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Southern Oregon University

We encourage students to write in multiple genres,
to explore issues that matter to them.
As a result, we find a 40% publication rate
among our students."

—Professor Bill Gholson, former Department Chair

The English and Writing Program offers three merit-based scholarships for current students: the John Smith Burley Memorial Scholarship, the James K. Bowen Memorial Scholarship, and the Isabel Meyn Scholarship. We grant these scholarships to students who demonstrate progression towards exceptional fulfillment of English and Writing major requirements. You'll find applications and other important information at the SOU Financial Aid Scholarship website. There are numerous and varied scholarships there for both current and prospective students.

English and Writing students produce two literary journals, one traditional and one Web based. Established more than twenty years ago, West Wind Review produces an annual paperback anthology of poetic and fictional works of writers from around the world. In Spring Term 2004, students in a Technical Writing class created an electronic Web-based magazine, Cognito , as a resource and outlet for English and Writing students. Both publications offer students the opportunity to write, edit, and select emergent literary works.

Beyond our journal and e-zine, we are proud of the large percentage of publishing English and Writing students. Where other schools might be satisfied with seeing around 15% of their students published in some official capacity, we push our students to do better than their already outstanding 40% publication rate. We encourage our students to seek out places to publish, either internally or externally, before they graduate.

Cognito is a student-run electronic magazine, “e-zine,” featuring student writing. It focuses on promoting active writers among Southern Oregon University’s English and Writing students. The e-zine not only publishes student works, but also provides resources for both the aspiring creative and academic writer.

Cognito offers quarterly writing contests and shares submission leads as a way to create a buzz of writing. Second-year editor, Kyle Stich, said, "Our acronym seems inappropriate as we now collaborate with Multimedia students for production." Watch for creative projects, as this new student publication takes advantage of all Web technologies offer, as they take student writing into the twenty-first century.

West Wind Review
Established in 1981 and based in Ashland, Oregon, West Wind Review is Southern Oregon University's student-run literary anthology publishing poetry, short stories, and artwork through a process of anonymous selection, favoring not someone's name but rather diverse and accessible writing that examines the human condition. Published annually in the spring, West Wind Review also serves as a training ground for university students interested in learning about publication production.

"I became an English major because reading
and writing well is an eminently practical skill.
The ability to read, write, or edit text
is a core competency in any profession."

—Robert Casserly,
2004 James K. Bowen Scholarship winner

Each year we present ten awards to bright and outstanding students. We value their achievements and believe their efforts need recognition. By awarding these students, we hope their peers will emulate their dedication to their studies and community engagement.

The awards reflect students' efforts to master the craft of writing, analyze the texts of Shakespeare and other authors, and explore Multicultural issues. Faculty members nominate and vote for those students they believe most deserve the awards, which are presented at an annual awards ceremony. The awards include an official SOU certificate and an individually chosen book or gift certificate.

  • Carol McNair Shakespeare Award
  • Michael Baughman Fiction Award
  • Herman Schmeling Award for Expository Writing
  • Robert L. Casebeer Poetry Award
  • Art Kreisman Award for Creative Writing
  • Outstanding Graduating Senior Majoring in Literature
  • Outstanding Graduating Senior Majoring in Writing
  • Outstanding Critical Essayist in Literature
  • Outstanding Student Teacher of English
  • Catherine Molinar Knapp Multicultural Award

Our English and Writing Program offers many experiential and financial opportunities for students to pursue, including collegiate publications, scholarships, and awards.