Study Abroad Program in Rome

October 19th, 2018 § 0

The Department of English is pleased to announce preparations for the 2019 biennial Study Abroad Program in Rome, Italy, from approximately June 25-July 17th.

Students earn five upper-division literature credits, three creative writing credits (applicable to any genre workshop course), and two independent study credits–in just four weeks–all while living, studying in a Renaissance palazzo, exploring, eating, and playing in the most fascinating city on earth.

Please contact Dr. Jennifer Maier ( if interested, and drop by our first INFORMATION SESSION, Tuesday, Oct. 16th, at 4:30 in Marston 255. Hear from former Rome students; learn how this program satisfies degree requirements for English literature, creative writing, and integrated studies majors, and discover what makes Reading and Writing Rome SPU’s most affordable study abroad program. (Hint: Summer tuition is discounted by 75%!)

Night Against Procrastination

October 9th, 2018 § 0

Tuesday, October 9th
6:00-10:00 p.m.

Please join faculty members and students at this year’s Night Against Procrastination, a late-night study hall in Ames Library.

There will be food, raffle prizes, study tables, and tutors to encourage everyone to get going on academic assignments.

Levertov Reading

October 2nd, 2018 § 0

Image’s 15th Annual Levertov Award
Reading and Reception with Award Recipient Carolyn Forché

Friday, October 5 | 7:30 p.m.
The New Hugo House
Seattle, Washington

Image Journal and its co-sponsors, Seattle Pacific University’s English Department and Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Writing Program, cordially invite you to attend the 15th annual Denise Levertov Award presentation and reading. Named for the poet Denise Levertov, who spent her last years in Seattle, the award is given annually to an artist, musician, or writer whose work exemplifies a serious and sustained engagement with faith. This year’s event will honor poet and social activist Carolyn Forché, whose honors include fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Lannan Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

We are delighted that the Levertov Award will be one of the first events hosted at the new Hugo House location in Capitol Hill. Founded by three Seattle-based writers, Hugo House has been a literary and cultural hub for two decades, where literary icons like Billy Collins, Amy Bloom, and Sharon Olds have led workshops and given readings. We are thrilled to partner with them as they launch their next chapter.

Join us on Friday, October 5, for the award presentation and reading, followed by a question and answer period, as well as a wine and dessert reception. For more information on the award and Forché’s work, please visit the Image website at

Reading by Paul Willis

September 27th, 2018 § 0

Today, Thursday, Sept. 27, Paul Willis of Westmont College will read from his two new books at 4:30pm in the CIS Conference Room in Lower Marston (entered from the east exterior of Marston Hall).


One book is Deer at Twilight, a collection of poems about the fauna and flora of the North Cascades, where Paul was a national park artist-in-residence.  The other is To Build a Trail: Essays on Curiosity, Love and Wonder, inspired by his experience of building a trail on the Westmont campus.

Manola Secaira ’18

May 31st, 2018 § 0

Manola checked in with us last week as she was making plans for graduating next month. In an email, she described her experiences in the English Department and beyond.

“I’ve loved SPU’s English major for expanding my understanding of and experiences with literature,” Manola said. “My favorite classes, like The Sentence, The Essay, and Latinx Literature, were those that introduced me to authors I might not have otherwise encountered. I love digging into details, and classes like these also allowed me to explore what classes with broader themes may have only skimmed.”

Last summer, Manola talked her way into a paying internship at the environmentalist media outlet Grist. “I’m majoring in both English Creative Writing and Communications Journalism,” Manola explained, “so writing for Grist allowed me to fulfill a lot of the personal aspirations that fueled my desire to complete both majors.

“Grist focuses specifically on covering issues of environmental justice and, as a contributor to their newsletter, I had the chance to search for stories related to that theme on a daily basis. I also had the chance to work with writers I admire, so having them as mentors helped my own writing develop quickly. It’s an experience I’m so grateful to have had, especially as it was one that allowed me to help others through the writing of stories, and it’s inspired me to pursue stories related to environmental justice in the future.”

What’s next for Manola? “I’m aiming for a journalism-related fellowship at the moment, but generally, I’m freelancing and pursuing a career in online journalism. On the side, I’m hoping to start submitting short stories to contests or publications. So, basically, I’m excited to be doing a lot of writing for the foreseeable future.”

Thanks for letting the department know what you’ve been up to, Manola, and see you at Ivy Cutting!