USD student awarded prestigious Stegner Fellowship in poetry

VERMILLION, S.D. -- Sarah Den Boer, a Ph.D. student at The University of South Dakota, is the recipient of a 2010 Wallace Stegner Fellowship at the Creative Writing Program at Stanford University.

Each year, Stanford offers 10, two-year fellowships – five in fiction and five in poetry. Named for Wallace Stegner, the fiction writer and Stanford professor who founded Stanford’s creative writing program, this unique fellowship includes a living stipend of $26,000 per year, tuition and health insurance costs. The only requirements are writing and attendance at workshops, including weekly three-hour workshops with Stanford faculty. Den Boer is the first student from The U to receive this prestigious fellowship.

“The Wallace Stegner Fellowship is exceptionally competitive. There are about 1,700 applicants each year for only fellowships,” stated Emily Haddad, professor and chair of the USD Department of English. “The opportunity to spend two years in the Stanford Creative Writing Program, focusing full-time on her writing, will be tremendously important for Sarah’s development as a poet. We are so impressed that her outstanding work has been recognized in this way.”

Den Boer, a native of British Columbia, Canada who recently moved to Bozeman, Mont., earned her bachelor’s degree in English at Dordt College in Sioux Center, Iowa, and her M.A. in English at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Now in the final stages of completing a Ph.D. in English at USD, Den Boer is the author of a chapbook collection of poems, “Sawdust, Sugarcube,” published by Dancing Girl Press (www.dancinggirlpress.com/sawdust.html). She has also published poems in several literary magazines.