Competitions offer students publishing opportunities

By Tyler Poda/reporter

TCC offers several modes for its students to express their creativity and have it published and recognized across the district.

NE Campus has a writing competition each year. Students enter submissions in poetry, short fiction and nonfiction essays. The submissions are judged by the English department faculty, and the winners are published in the fall semester’s edition of Under the Clock Tower, the department’s literary journal.

“Those who receive even a semifinalist notification feel encouraged to keep writing and attempting big things,” said English associate professor Rebecca Balcarcel, who took over as editor for the student journal in 2004.

Placing in this competition can go a long way as students can add this to their list of awards and achievements, which impresses universities, employers and scholarship committees, Balcarcel said.

“Honing one’s writing skills is valuable in itself,” she said.

South Campus has offered the Script magazine to its students for publishing their creative work for the last 30 years. Script publishes all types of writing such as poetry, fiction, academic essays and personal essays. It also includes visual art, music, film, plays and anything creative.

Script promotes the voices of South Campus students,” faculty editor Logen Cure said. “It provides the opportunity for students to participate in their community and be a part of the long, impressive legacy of the publication.”

Cure, who has been faculty editor the last three years, teaches Academic Cooperative English, a class designed to offer hands-on experience in making a publication. Her students are the editorial staff. They do everything to make the magazine.

Students submit their creative work via Blackboard. Her class reviews every submission, rates them and decides which ones will be published.

“I love watching students feel a sense of pride and accomplishment,” Cure said.

SE Campus also has a creative writing magazine titled Compass. Like Script, Compass is produced by students. A group of students reviews each submission and narrows the selections down to the ones that best fit that year’s theme.

Arlandis Jones, the lead faculty sponsor for the last two years, said they mostly receive poetry submissions. But he has recently been seeing more nonfiction, a few pieces of fiction and some plays.

“We don’t see much artwork,” he said. “I’d like to see more artwork: acrylics, paintings, sculptures, even jewelry. That would be nice to include.”

Jones said he hopes the magazine helps students become confident in their writing and they become unafraid to share their work.

“I like to see the students published because it gives them something to aspire to,” he said.