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Undergraduate Writing Symposium: Faculty Nominations

The Undergraduate Writing Symposium provides an opportunity for departments and faculty to showcase exemplary undergraduate writing–academic, creative, and even digital–and gives us all an opportunity to celebrate the achievements of our undergraduate students.

In Spring 2021, the Symposium will be held virtually over Zoom and as two separate events, each with its own distinct focus. Please scroll down below the Symposium Nomination form section for the categories of nominations being sought for Spring 2021 as well as additional information for nominators.

Symposium Nomination Form

Symposium Nomination Deadline: Friday, January 29, 2021)

Symposium Faculty Nomination Form 

Follow the link above or copy and paste the form URL into your browser:

Email nominations: While web form submissions are preferred, faculty may also send a brief nomination email to (please include “Symposium Nomination” in the subject line).

Creative Writing Event and Nominations

The first event, a Creative Writing Showcase, will be held on Friday, April 9.

To be eligible for this year’s Creative Writing Showcase event, nominated writing must have been produced during the 2020 calendar year or be an ongoing or recently completed advanced project.

First-Year and Advanced Research Writing Event and Nominations

Celebrating the achievements of undergraduate authors at both the beginning and end of their journey as writers in college, the second event, an Academic Writing Showcase, will feature the writing of first-year authors, on the one hand, and the research writing of more advanced undergraduate authors, on the other. This second event will take place Thursday, April 15.

To be eligible for this year’s event, nominated first-year writing must have been produced during the fall 2020 semester.

Faculty may nominate students for advanced research writing that is completed or still in progress. Immersion projects are welcome. (For advanced projects, students need only submit an abstract, not a complete draft.)

Faculty may submit up to five nominations total across all categories. Scroll below the nominations form for additional guidelines and information.

Guidelines for Nominators

We welcome nomination of argumentative essays, research reports, creative pieces (fiction, poetry, etc.) and other writing projects, including digital compositions, to be considered for inclusion in the event. To be eligible, first-year writing and creative pieces must have been written during the 2020 calendar year. Advanced research projects can either be completed or ongoing.

Each faculty member may complete as many as five nominations.

First-Year Nominations / Submissions

All first-year students whose writing is nominated will be considered for inclusion in the symposium as well as in Scaffold: A Showcase of Vanderbilt First-Year Writing, a digital collection begun in Spring 2019 as an extension of the symposium.

The Process Following Your Nomination

Once you submit your nominations, you will be copied on the email inviting your students to submit their writing and compete for inclusion in the Symposium. We invite you to follow up with the students that you have nominated to encourage their participation.

We also encourage you to join us for the symposium itself! The 2021 Undergraduate Writing Symposium will consist of two events: a creative writing showcase on Friday, April 9 and a showcase of first-year and advanced research writing on Thursday, April 15. Both events will be held via videoconference.