Aside: Ward Prize Reception Honors Distinguished First-Year Writers


Some students come to Middlebury with writing skills already established. Some become great writers while they are here. Some have great writing thrust upon them… That, or they learn those skills exceedingly fast. Anyway, the school wants to reward those writing skills, and does so with nominations for the Paul Ward Prize for excellence in writing.

Paul W. Ward ’25 was a Pulitzer Prize and French Legion of Honor-winning journalist. After his death, his widow, Dorothy Cate Ward ’28, established the prize to carry on his legacy of excellence in writing. Paul Ward spent his career emphasizing the “precise and exact usage of words, exact meanings, phrases expressed lucidly and gracefully,” wrote Dorothy Ward in her letter to the College. “We, his family, hope these beliefs and standards will furnish the criteria on which this prize will be judged.”

“And so they have,” said Mary Ellen Bertolini, “every year, since 1978.” As the Associate Director of the Writing Program, Mrs. Bertolini is proud to carry on the legacy of the prize in connection with the Ward family, the Middlebury Center for Teaching, Learning and Research, and the faculty across all departments that are supportive and encouraging of young writers.

The 34th annual Ward Prize reception was held this year on October 5. The forty-two nominated students were in attendance, as were their parents and the nominating faculty. As this year’s winner of the Ward Prize, Catherine Costley read an excerpt from her essay Emily Dickenson and Sylvia Plath: Their Exploration of Female Transcendence. The reception also included presentations by the two runners-up, Margaret Morris and Carolyn Orosz, and acknowledgement of the two honorable mentions, William Cuneo and Margaret Hadley.

All nominees have been invited to train as peer writing tutors and first year seminar mentors next year. The winner has also received $500 and the runners-up $250 each.

Below is a list of all of the Class of 2015 Nominees:

Garrett Chadwick Brann
Tess Lacey Clark
Catherine Anne Costley
William Joseph Cuneo
Taylor Grey Custer
Theresa Beatrice Duncan
Emma C. Eastwood-Paticchio
Katherine Alexander Eiseman
Megan Else Ernst
Brita Caroline Fisher
Martin Wik Fowler
Erica Lynn Furgiuele
Scott Thompson Gilman
Lydia Helena Gordon
Margaret Olivia Hadley
Katherine Ramsey Hamilton
Blake Anderson Harper
Kathryn Judith Hill
Emily Day Hoang
Jacob John Hobbie
Lillie Grace Hodges
Kaitlin Marie Horan
Matthew Lewis Jerrehian
Lucy Lee Killian
Halley Ashby Lamberson
Chelsea Ryan Melone
Margaret Kathryn Morris
Limla Monica Moua
Carolyn Elizabeth Orosz
Elizabeth Atwood Oyler
Abhishek Raman Parajuli
Hannah Cross Reeve
Sonia Rose Rodrigues
Tayla Caroline Satkwich
Robert Alexander Silverstein
Charles Gordon Steinberg
Natalie McShea Valentin
Chloe Anne Wilwerding
Tyler Graydon Wood
David Isaac Yedid
Danny Zhang