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Awards and Scholarships


Outstanding English Senior

Awarded each spring at the LAS Honors Day Program to an English senior selected by English faculty for outstanding scholarship and contribution to the department and discipline.

Peter Dusenbery Award for Outstanding Senior in Literary Studies

English department faculty choose a graduating senior (either December or May) with the strongest record of accomplishment in literary courses. Criteria include an excellent grade point average, strong letter of support from a faculty member and a demonstration of superior skills in critical reading and literary discourse.

Outstanding Senior in English Education

The English department faculty choose the most outstanding December or May graduate in English education. Faculty consider all English-teaching majors who have completed their student teaching either prior to or during the spring semester. Criteria include an excellent record in both English and teacher education courses and a strong letter of support from faculty in the Department of Teacher Education.

Olive B. White Award

Each year, the creative writing faculty select a graduating creative writing major or minor to recognize for his/her contributions to the creative writing courses. 


Senior Scholar

This award honors a current junior for outstanding performance and contributions to the department and community. The criteria for selection include: 1) student must be enrolled full time, and 2) student must be majoring in English. Selection is based on faculty recommendation (50 points), campus and community activities (25 points) and overall GPA and GPA in English (25 points). This award comes with a monetary prize.

The Ballowe Scholarship in Creative Writing

Awarded in recognition of a writer's attention to the subtleties of language, development of an individual voice and ability to engage the reader. After receiving his doctorate from the University of Illinois, James Ballowe served 36 years as professor and administrator at Bradley University. He retired in 1999 as Distinguished Professor of English Emeritus. His most recent books are “A Man of Salt and Trees” (Northern Illinois University Press, 2009), a biography of Joy Morton, the founder of Morton Salt and of The Morton Arboretum, and the anthology “Christmas in Illinois” (University of Illinois Press, 2010), containing stories and images that reflect the cultural diversity of the state. He also edited the poetry for “Creatures in the City”, a natural history anthology. He serves as a founding editor of “Fifth Wednesday Journal” and conducts interviews with its featured poets.