Scholarships, Conferences, Contests and More

It’s January 4th, and only the second day of the quarter, so chances are your brand new calendars are still looking pretty blank. Not for much longer! Today on Ex Libris we have a good long list of deadlines to write down, whether you’re looking for contests, scholarships, publications, or conferences. So get out your calendars, because there’s something for everyone.


For current seniors or recent graduates of DePaul considering graduate school: the Office of Multicultural Student Success is currently accepting applications for the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Graduate Arts Award which recognizes and rewards promising up-and-coming artists from lower income backgrounds.

The Foundation will award up to 15 scholarships to outstanding students in the visual arts, performing arts, and creative writing who plan to begin graduate studies in fall 2012. Each award will cover a portion of educational expenses, including tuition, living expenses, and other required fees for the length of the approved graduate degree program, up to three years. Scholarships vary depending on the cost of attendance and other scholarships or grants received. The maximum award available per student is $50,000 per year. Scholars may use the award to attend any accredited graduate school in the US or abroad. Awards are for students who have not yet pursued a graduate or professional degree.

Minimum eligibility includes: senior or recent graduate status, a cumulative GPA of 3.2 or better, plan to pursue a graduate degree in the performing arts, visual arts, or creative writing AND begin the program in fall 2012, and have demonstrated financial need. Students MUST be nominated by the DePaul Faculty representative designated by the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation. Interested students must request a Jack Kent Cooke Graduate Arts Scholarship Information Packet from Nikiah Barnes at This packet details the requirements for participation in the application process.

Completed applications must be turned into the Office of Multicultural Student Success, Suite 304 in the Lincoln Park Student Center, no later than 5:00pm on Thursday, January 26, 2012. Please contact Nikiah Barnes at 773-325-7325 or at with any questions.


The Clinton Institute of the University College Dublin has announced a call for papers for their Media and the Arab Spring Conference taking place 14-15 April 2012, which will explore the widespread perception that media – old and especially new – have significantly influenced the events of the “Arab Spring”. The conference will bring together media practitioners, writers, commentators and scholars to investigate the role of different forms of media in shaping these events and perceptions of them.

Speakers include: Kamel Riahi (writer, Tunisia), Joseph Massad (Columbia University, US), Rami Abdurrahman (Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, UK), Caroline Rooney (University of Kent, UK), Ayman el-Desouky (SOAS, UK), Sahar el-Mougy (writer, Egypt), Scott Lucas (EA Worldview, UK), Michael Graae (photojournalist, UK)

Paper proposals (max. 250 words) are invited on all aspects of the “Arab Spring”. Possible topics include (but are not restricted to):

  • the evolutions and contributions of “citizen journalism” in the region
  • the role of the Internet and new social media in fueling and shaping the Arab Spring
  • hip-hop and street art – the early shades and sounds of change in the region
  • the roles of the Arab press and media and the effects of (self)censorship before, during, and after the uprisings
  • Arab literature and the revolutions
  • the role of international media in framing the Arab Spring
  • the role of media in the development of civil society and post-conflict nation-building
  • the role of diaspora media in relation to the ongoing events and the futures of the post-conflict states

Please send your paper abstracts (in e-mail attachments) to Rita Sakr: before 1 February 2012. For further details, see


So to Speak: a feminist journal of language and art is now accepting submissions for its Fall 2012 issue. This issue will feature the fiction contest winner, as well as poetry, nonfiction, and art. Submissions will be accepted from January 1- March 15 through the online submissions manager.

The contest judge for the Fall 2012 Fiction Contest will be Ru Freeman. The winner will receive prize money and publication, and contests finalists will be published in the issue. The contest entry fee of $15 will include a free copy of the Fall 2012 issue for all entrants.

 So to Speak, founded in 1993 by an editorial collective of women MFA candidates at George Mason University, has served as a space for feminist writing and art for nearly 18 years. So to Speak publishes poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and visual art that live up to a high standard of language, form, and meaning. They look for work that addresses issues of significance to women’s lives and movements for women’s equality and are especially interested in pieces that explore issues of race, class, and sexuality in relation to gender.

Please visit  for full submission guidelines.


2012 Creative Writing Competition

The Union League Civic & Arts Foundation supports the creative writing efforts of young people by granting a total of up to $13,800 in awards.

College Division, Ages 18 – 24 as of June 1, 2012:
First Place – $1,200, Second Place – $800, Third Place – $600
POETRY: First Place – $1,200, Second Place – $800, Third Place – $600

Young Adult Division, Ages 25-30 as of June 1, 2012:
First Place – $1,500, Second Place – $1,000, Third Place – $800
POETRY: First Place, $1,500, Second Place, $1,000, Third Place, $800

1. The submission must be an original work of creative writing– a poem, a short story, novel excerpt, or work of creative nonfiction. Novel excerpts should stand alone as self-contained fictional movements.
2. Each entrant is limited to and may not submit more than one piece.
3. Entrants must be living and or studying within a one hundred-miles radius of the Chicago Loop or students registered in an Illinois school within a one hundred-mile radius of the Chicago Loop.
4. The submission should be typed in Word format, in English in Times New Roman 12- point font, have reasonable margins and be double-spaced. Poems must be no less than 5 and no more than 100 lines, not counting title and spaces between stanzas. Poetry entries may be in any verse form, without restrictions on theme or style. Stories, novel excerpts and works of creative non-fiction should not exceed 6,000 words.  Submissions that exceed the line, word or page limit will be disqualified.
5. The submission should be labeled as a poem, short story, novel excerpt, or work of creative non-fiction. Please include this on the submission itself.
6. Pages should be numbered consecutively in the upper right-hand corner. The title should appear on the top of each page. The author’s name and birth date should not appear anywhere on the submission.
7. We encourage applicants to submit their work online at
8. If necessary, applicants may mail their application and submission. Mailed submissions should include the following materials: five hard copies of the submission, a CD or flash drive with the submission in Word format, and an entry form.
• Submissions will not be returned.
• The author of any winning entry grants the Union League Civic & Arts Foundation a royalty-free right of electronic and printed publication on our website and any future anthologies. The author will retain full copyright to the work. Should we publish this material, we will provide each awardee with a copy of the publication either in print or electronically. Additional copies will be available for purchase.
• The work of the winners may be published at our discretion. The Union League Civic & Arts Foundation reserves the right to edit entries that will be published. Entries that are extensively edited will be submitted to the author who may elect not to print the work in edited form.
• Deadline (drop off, postmark, or electronic submission) for an entry is June 1, 2012.  Materials can be sent or delivered to Anne Shea, Union League Civic & Arts Foundation, 65 West Jackson Boulevard, Chicago, IL 60604-3598.
• Competition results will be released (via email or letter) by October 2012.

To Apply:


And because we know how long winter break has been, a few quick reminders of deadlines we posted before the break:

January 13th – Deadline for submitting an abstract for Concordia University’s Enunciating the End conference.

January 16thExtended deadline for submissions to ROPES Literary Journal.

January 31st – Deadline for submitting work to the Dzanc Books/CNC DISQUIET International Literary Award.

January 31st – Submission deadline for Merton Institute Poetry of the Sacred Contest.


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