The Peter Burton Hanson Writing Competition

The English Department is pleased to announce the ninth annual undergraduate writing awards, given for the best essays written by an English major in the categories of scholarly writing and creative writing respectively. The awards are named honor of Peter Burton Hanson, A&S ’91, an English major, who perished along with his wife, Sue Kim, and young daughter, Christine Lee, aboard United Airlines Flight 175, on 9/11/01.

Two prizes of $250 each for the best work written in an undergraduate English course (excluding first-year writing courses and Advanced Writing in the Disciplines courses) will be awarded at a special presentation at the Spring Majors’ Pizza Party on Wednesday, March 20th, from 12:00-1:30.   One prize is awarded in the category of Scholarly Writing, the other in the category of Creative Writing. 

Scholarly Writing includes essays on British, American, and comparative literature, literary theory, rhetoric, and film.

Creative Writing includes short stories, chapters from book-length works, poetry, creative nonfiction (such as memoirs), plays, and screenplays.


  • Work should be submitted by email to Professor Laura Green  ( by March 15th at 3PM

Eligibility Guidelines:

  • Work must be by an English major, written for a class in the major.
  • Eligible semesters are Fall 2011, Spring 2012, Summer 1, Summer 2 2012, and Fall 2012.
  • Students may submit in either category or both, but no more than one work in each category.
  • Collections of short creative work, such as a group of poems, will be read as one submission.
  • Work may be revised from the form in which it was submitted for the class before being entered in the competition.
  • Submissions in the Scholarly Writing category should be not less than five pages long.
  • Submissions in each category should not exceed twenty-five pages.

Submission Guidelines:

  • Submit one electronic copy of work in Microsoft Word or PDF format to the Professor Laura Green at
  • Include in the body of the email message: author’s name, email address, and phone number; title of work; course title, number, and semester; name of instructor for whom the work was written.
  • Judging is anonymous. The title should appear on the first page of the submission, but the author’s name must not appear anywhere in the work itself.

Please note that work not submitted in accordance with these guidelines may not be eligible. If you have any questions, please email Professor Green.