CWEP Student Writing Award
Every year, the Committee for Written English Proficiency (CWEP), an interdisciplinary group of faculty and administrators who oversee practices and policy related to student writing on campus, recognizes undergraduate and graduate students who demonstrate excellence in writing within their discipline. A call for nominations will be posted in the spring, and faculty will be asked to submit an outstanding student paper for an award. Since 2016, CWEP has sponsored competitions for the following awards:
This award recognizes any type of writing, as long as it was submitted to fulfill requirements for a GWAR course.
2016 Awardee: Kareena del Rosario, The Power of the Fabliaux, (FR 400 GW French Culture - GWAR; Instructor: Le Marchand)
In submitting Kareena’s paper, Professor Le Marchand said: “Kareena del Rosario’s The Power of the Fabliaux written for French Culture 400 GW, in Spring 2016, is exemplary as it showcases excellent and meticulous research on the Medieval literary genre of the fabliau, with well-chosen examples to illustrate her arguments that this genre gave a voice to the peasants at the time and served as a platform to express their views of the society. Kareena’s writing is colorful and vibrant, while informative and structured”.
2016 Honorable Mention: Elijah Behar, The Mold Remains Intact, (PSY 305 GW Contemporary Issues in Psychology - GWAR; Instructor: Christine Perry)
The review committee offered the following comments: “The author wrote a beautiful personal essay placing a memory of an experience he had in the context of a larger insight. Behar’s first person account of his first day at the Berklee School of Music reads like a coming-of-age story. He writes with delightful descriptive detail (“surrounding me were 20 other skinny teenagers with shaggy brown hair, peach-fuzz mustaches, tight black jeans… playing the same damn blues riff”), and clearly understands well and responds eloquently to the task at hand.”
2016 Honorable Mention: Michelle Stone, Palestine and Israel: The Path Towards Cooperation, (I R 309 GW International Relations Analysis and Application - GWAR; Instructor: Juanita Darling)
In submitting Michelle’s paper, Professor Darling said: “The goal for papers in the International Relations GWAR course is for students to apply relevant theory to analyze primary sources that are not widely available, producing original research. Michelle Stone selected a challenging topic and learned about developments through credible primary sources. She then drew on her knowledge of theory to explain which factors or variables were salient to her case, explaining past outcomes and predicting future directions.”
2017 Awardee: Ariana Balagtas, Of Histories and Hiveminds: The Weaponization of Community in Fuente Ovejuna and The Crucible, (CWL 400 GW Approaches to Comparative and World Literature - GWAR; Instructor: Dane Johnson).
In submitting Ariana’s paper, Professor Johnson said: “The paper is a striking comparison of Lope de Vega's early 17th century Spanish play with Arthur Miller's 20th century American drama. The notion of a "weaponization of community" is already an arresting way to bring these two texts together, and the paper manages to manage the dance of the shared and the meaningfully distinct in exemplary comparative fashion. The plays were serious in their own times, perhaps as relevant as ever right now, and Ms. Balagtas' careful work in and through them models lightly but carefully contextualized reading with a sense of how such reading can enlighten the readers of today. The writing is clear, controlled, and vivid throughout with professional-level weaving in of a range of well-selected sources and a penchant for phrases that are striking and revealing at the same time. Knowing the scholarship on Fuente Ovejuna fairly well, I can state that this paper also provides a fresh perspective. It could be developed into a full-fledged article. It's the sharpest undergraduate critical writing I have read in awhile—and sharper than much of what I read in published scholarship.”
2017 Honorable Mention: Noah Agape Scandrette, Measurement of Muon Lifetime, (PHYS 490 GW Advanced Laboratory II - GWAR; Instructor: AKM Newaz)
In submitting Noah’s paper, Professor Newaz said: “In this advanced laboratory course for physics seniors, students conduct three experiments and write papers following the guideline of a peer review journal. Writing a physics technical paper following the guidelines of a peer review journal is very challenging and requires thought and effort. It is even more challenging for an undergraduate student. A good paper requires acquiring high quality data, analyzing the data properly (calculations and error analysis), plotting (visualizing) the data properly and arriving at the right conclusion. This paper is very well written based on the student's own data set acquired in this class. Mr. Noah did everything properly and wrote this paper concisely. The figures presented in the figure are properly prepared. The extensive data analysis has been done properly. Furthermore, the paper is understandable for the physics researchers outside the experts in particle physics.”
This award recognizes any text demonstrating effective storytelling, analysis, exposition or original research, as long as it was submitted to fulfill requirements for a course in a graduate program.
2017 Awardee:Max Czapansky, Quantifying Habitat Accessibility in Marine Species, (GEOG 857 Issues in Marine and Estuarine Conservation; Instructor: Ellen Hines)
In submitting Max’s paper, Professor Hines said, “Max is the best student I've ever had. His work is complex, but he explains it well, and I believe his paper let's his excitement and dedication to knowledge and conservation come through.”
2017 Honorable Mention: Allyce Ondricka, Why Suzie Wong Is (Possibly) a Lesbian: Reading the Queer Possibility of the Unseen in Filmic Representation of Asian Women's Sexuality, (CINE 720 Critical Paradigms and the Cinematic; Instructor: Celine Shimizu)
In submitting Allyce’s paper, Professor Shimizu said, “Allyce Ondricka's paper is not only astute in terms of scholarly research, it is bold and original in recasting what is assumed about Asian women in cinema: their embodiment of heterosexuality. The paper focuses on the anxious repetition of racialized gender which attempts to naturalize images of hyper-heterosexuality for Asian women in Hollywood films. Ondricka revisits two films that show how "these repetitions can never be exact or complete, leaving excesses and gaps in the forms of identity they construct, allowing for the image to undo itself, destabilizing the heterosexual matrix these images belong to. This method still allows for the text to have racist and sexist implications, but looks at the ways in which these ideologies can, through their imperfect reenactment, leave room for their own undoing.” She builds from my own work on the subject, and major theorists Homi Bhabha and Judith Butler as well as Cynthia Liu, Peter X. Feng, and Jee Yeun Lee in order to read performances of lesbian subjectivity in images deemed always already heterosexual. The paper is truly creative and convincing-- it does what scholarship does best - illuminates what we think we already know and makes us see ourselves and the world anew.”