Many institutions of higher education provide opportunities for students to publish their creative and academic work. While student newspapers and research publications make up many of these opportunities, literary and art journals are also quite popular.
Literary and artistic pursuit within an educational setting are documented to be part of a well-rounded education, regardless of publication or not. So, why publish? Dr. Melissa Lenos, assistant professor and chair of liberal arts and sciences, explains that Donnelly takes the time, energy and consideration to transform student work into a printed publication in part to show students that their work has value, and that there is a wider audience for it.
"Writing is not simply something a student does for a grade or for personal pleasure, it can be for an extended audience who will read the writing and look at their visual work out of true interest and admiration,” she said.
Throughout Donnelly's history, publishing student works has been an important part of the academic experience. From students producing “Newsletter” in the 1950s, and a poetry magazine in the 1960s entitled “Well-Used Sidewalk,” to the 1970s with the publication of the literary journal, “The Athenian,” the opportunity has been readily available on campus.
While “The Athenian” ceased publication some time ago, more recently, since 2014, Lenos has led the effort to publish and edit “dime: the Arts and Literary Journal of Donnelly College". Each fall semester, all students have the opportunity to submit their works of fiction, poetry, essays, creative nonfiction and visual art. In the spring, “dime” is released, and selected students win the Sister Mary Faith Schuster Award for outstanding submissions. Take a look at the most recent issue and the list of award winners.
In addition to “dime,” during the spring 2018 semester, Dr. Paula Console-Soican, assistant professor of English, published a collection of student essays under the title “The Immigrant's Song”. This collection represents essays submitted in a class by the same title where students had the opportunity to explore their own relationship to “immigrant fiction” discussed in the course. In the preface, Console-Soican writes, "With this collection of student essays from my immigrant fiction class from the fall of 2017 at Donnelly College, I am merely extending the importance of reporting, of documenting the stories that people need to tell, and in this case the autoethnographic essays that my students have learned to write. I do so under the knowledge that each one of us has a way of writing or talking in this autoethnographic sense that is unmatched and crucial to listen to. In what follows I am attempting to give my students their own voice against and across the constraints imposed by our class, by the fact that this was a final exam in which the personal essay meets the literary response to one of the books we read for class."
“dime” is supported by the Department of Liberal Arts and Sciences as well as the Sister Mary Faith Schuster Award donors, Larry and Joan Ward.
“The Immigrant's Song” was a special project supported by various departments within the college.