Recently rechristened the Bucknell Seminar for Undergraduate Poets, the Seminar is now under the direction of alumna K. A. Hays. (The program was formerly known as the Seminar for Younger Poets). Held for three weeks in June, the Seminar provides an extended opportunity for undergraduate poets to write and to be guided by established poets. Staff and visiting poets conduct writing workshops and offer lecture/discussions, present readings of their own work, and are available for individual conferences.
In the past, such poets as Terrance Hayes, Dana Levin, Mary Ruefle, Brigit Pegeen Kelly, Jean Valentine, Carl Phillips, and Ada Limon have served as visiting poets. Numerous readings provide the participants with the opportunity to hear and be heard by their peers. Applicants compete for ten places in the Seminar, all of which come with fellowships. Fellowships include tuition, housing in campus apartments, and meals. Accepted students are responsible only for their travel to Bucknell and a modest library deposit. A limited number of travel scholarships are available.
The 2019 staff will include visiting poets Eduardo Corral, Aracelis Girmay, Donika Kelly. Dates for the 2019 Seminar are June 8 - 29. The application postmark deadline is Jan. 31, 2019. See Frequently Asked Questions for eligibility and application guidelines.
Visiting Poets for 2019
Eduardo C. Corral's first book, Slow Lightning, won the Yale Series of Younger Poets competition in 2011. He's the recipient of a Whiting Writers' Award, a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, and the National Holmes Poetry Prize and the Hodder Fellowship, both from Princeton University. He teaches in the MFA program in Creative Writing at North Carolina State University.
Aracelis Girmay is the author of The Black Maria (BOA Editions, 2016), Kingdom Animalia (BOA Editions, 2011), winner of the Isabella Poetry Award and a finalist for the National Books Critics Circle Award, and Teeth (Curbstone Press, 2007). She is also the author of a collage-based picture book, changing, changing (George Braziller, 2005). She has received fellowships from Cave Canem, Civitella Ranieri, and the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as a Whiting Award. She teaches and lives in New York City.
Donika Kelly is the author of the chapbook Avarium (500 Places, 2017) and the full-length collection Bestiary (Graywolf, 2016), winner of the 2015 Cave Canem Poetry Prize, among other awards. A Cave Canem graduate fellow, Donika holds an MFA from the Michener Center for Writers at the University of Texas at Austin, and a Ph.D. in English from Vanderbilt University, where she specialized in American literature and film studies. She teaches in New York City.
Staff Poets for 2019
Katie Hays, Director
Born in Phoenixville, Pennsylvania, K. A. (Katie) Hays was educated at Bucknell, Oxford, and Brown Universities, where she earned an M.F.A. in 2005. She is the author of three books of poetry, Early Creatures, Native Gods (Carnegie Mellon, 2012) and Dear Apocalypse (Carnegie Mellon, 2009) and the forthcoming Windthrow (Carnegie Mellon, 2017). Her poems have appeared in Best American Poetry (2009, 2011) and other anthologies and widely in journals and magazines. She has also published fiction and verse translations and has served as an editor of West Branch, Bucknell's national literary journal. Hays has received residencies at the Elizabeth Bishop House in Great Village, Nova Scotia, and at the Frost Place in Franconia, New Hampshire. She has taught creative writing at Bucknell since 2010 and in 2014 served as Acting Director of the Seminar for Younger Poets. She is thrilled to assume the directorship of the Seminar for Younger Poets beginning with the 2016 Seminar.
Deirdre O'Connor, Associate Director
Deirdre O'Connor's book, Before the Blue Hour, was the winner of the Cleveland State Poetry Prize for 2001. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Crazyhorse, The American Journal of Nursing, Frontiers: A Journal of Women's Studies, Poetry and other journals. A native of Pittsburgh, O'Connor holds an MFA from the Pennsylvania State University. She directs Bucknell's Writing Center.
Leslie Sainz, Seminar Associate
Leslie Sainz, 2018-19 Stadler Fellow, is a first-generation Cuban-American, born and raised in Miami, Florida. A CantoMundo Fellow, she received her MFA in poetry from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her work has appeared in or is widely in journals. She was the Fall 2017 Writer-in-Residence at the Hub City Writers Project.
Jan Verberkmoes, Seminar Associate
Jan Verberkmoes, 2018-19 Stadler Fellow, received her MFA in poetry from the University of Mississippi. Her poems appear in Ecotone, Pleiades, 32 Poems, Propeller, Lana Turner, and elsewhere. She has received scholarships and grants from the Fulbright Program, the Sewanee Writers' Conference, and the Squaw Valley Poetry Workshop.