Contests & Awards

Please take note of deadlines and varying conditions of eligibility. With the exception of the Mitchell Adelman Award, please submit all work online using this form:


Awards and Contests for Creative Writing

The Mitchell Adelman Memorial Scholarship for Creative Writing

The Mitchell Adelman Memorial Scholarship for Creative Writing is an award for excellence in creative writing, dedicated to the memory of Mitchell Adelman, a poet and a Rutgers College student, Class of 1990, who died of leukemia. Students are invited to submit either a single work of short fiction or a group of poems (no less than three and no more than five). Eligible students must be enrolled in the School of Arts and Sciences (school 01). Students must currently be of sophomore, junior, or senior status, with a cumulative GPA of 3.000 at the end of the Fall 2019 semester. The SAS English Department faculty review all entries and determine the recipients of the Mitchell Adelman Memorial Scholarship.

Please note that all materials submitted must be your own work. For information on the University’s Policy on Academic Integrity, and in particular on plagiarism, please go to

The deadline for submission of materials is March 4, 2020

A complete packet includes the following materials:

1. A typed cover sheet with the following information:

  • Name
  • RUID Number
  • Class Year
  • E-mail address
  • Mobile Telephone Number
  • Fiction or Poetry

DO NOT include any of this information on any additional pages.

2. A single work of short fiction or a group of poems (no less than 3 and no more than 5) printed single sided.

Note: If you do not provide all materials, your submission will be returned and will not be reviewed. Completed submissions should be emailed or hand delivered to:

Ms. Kate Cahill (


SAS Scholarship Office

35 College Avenue/College Avenue Campus

New Brunswick, NJ 08901-1164


Remaining awards and contests deadlines: March 16 , 2020 

Academy of American Poets 2020 Enid Dame Memorial Poetry Prize

Dedicated to the art of poetry, the Academy publishes prize-winning poems, and a plan is underway for an annual supplement focusing on the prizes.

  • Open to all undergraduates
  • Maximum of 5 poems may be submitted
  • $100 prize for best poem(s)

Evelyn Hamilton Award in Creative Writing

  • Open to all undergraduates
  • Awarded for the best original story, creative non-fiction, or group of three or more poems                    
     *Please label works as creative non-fiction, fiction, or poetry*
  •  8-10 pages maximum 

Composing in New Media Prize

  • Open to students who have produced multimedia composition, documentary film, digital story, graphic narrative, or any work in new media
  • This year’s prize is underwritten by Writers House
  • Hand in submissions electronically to or on DVD to Murray Hall 102 or 106

Open Only to Undergraduate Douglass Women in New Brunswick:

Julia Carlie Prize

Open only to undergraduate Douglass Women. Do not apply if you are not a Douglass Woman.

Prize awarded for original poetry.

  • 8-10 pages maximum

Edna Herzberg Prizes

Open only to undergraduate Douglass Women. Do not apply if you are not a Douglass Woman.

Prizes awarded for an essay, for fiction, and for poetry.

  • 8-10 pages maximum

*Please label works as essay, fiction, or poetry*

Awards and Contests for Coursework

James Suydam Prize in English Composition

  • Awarded to the best essay on a topic of the writer’s choice of contemporary social, political, or educational significance
  • Minimum length 5 pages
  • 8-10 pages maximum

Ernest W. Thomas Memorial Prize for Interpretation of Shakespearean Works

  • Open only to Douglass Residential College Students
  • Awarded to the best paper submitted for a regular course assignment concerning Shakespeare’s works
  • 8-10 pages maximum

Irving D. Blum Prize

  • Awarded for the best essay submitted for a regular course assignment
  • Essays may be in original form or revised, but should be retyped and free of instructor’s marks and comments
  • 8-10 pages maximum

English Department Faculty Prize

  • Awarded to an outstanding essay written in coursework
  • Essays of 1,000 to 4,500 words are eligible and will be judged on substance and style

  • 8-10 pages maximum

Jamima Dingus Qualls Prize

  • Awarded to the best undergraduate essay on women writers or feminist issues in English or American Literature
  • 8-10 pages maximum

Toni Cade Bambara Prize in African American Literature

  • Open to English majors in the Junior year that have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 and have taken two or more African American literature courses
  • Submit a paper written to fulfill a course assignment AND a brief personal statement describing how your work in and out of class exemplifies ideals associated with Toni Cade Bambara
  • 8-10 pages maximum

The English Department reserves the right not to give a prize or award if no entries are judged to be of sufficiently high quality.