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First-Year Writing Awards 2022

Donald E Barnett Awards   

Each year, the English Department recognizes excellent writing in English 1101 and 1102 by presenting two Barnett Essay Awards. Named in honor of Donald E. Barnett, who directed the Freshman English Program for many years, the awards consist of cash prizes and publication of the winning essays in the First-Year Writing Guidebook. These awards are supported by the English Department Fund.

For English 1102

Helen SormeHelen Sorme, "Loving Your Mother and Her Earth"

Nominated by Hannah Victoria Warren

Helen is a first-year intended journalism student from Tyrone, Georgia. Her love for writing blossomed greatly under Hannah V Warren’s course focusing on magic and monstrosity in literature. On campus, Helen is a writer for Rouge Magazine as well as a member of the Club Swim team. She plans to pursue an MA in Health and Medical Journalism at UGA after the completion of her undergraduate degree. Helen’s passions outside of academics include hiking, baking, and running, along with spending time with friends over chai lattes.

Michael G Moran e-Portfolio Awards   

Beginning in 2007, the English Department began recognizing the excellent work being done in ePortfolios for English 1101 and 1102 by presenting the portfolio awards. Named in honor of Michael G. Moran, a former director of FYW who did much to shape and improve the program and who has continued to support it by serving loyally on the First-Year Writing Committee, these awards also consist of cash prizes and publication of selected exhibits from the winning ePortfolios in the First-Year Writing Guide. These awards are supported by the English Department Fund

For English 1101

Avery Jainniney 

Nominated by Jessica Marie LambertAvery Jainniney Head Shot

Avery Jainniney is a rising second-year International Affairs and Political Science major from Augusta, Georgia. She has a special interest in immigrants’ rights, both at home and abroad, and aims to use her career to uplift migrants, displaced individuals, and refugees. After her expected graduation in 2025, Avery would like to work for a human rights organization, like the ACLU or UNHCR, and then attend law school, which would allow her to one day be an immigration litigation attorney. As an immigration litigation attorney, Avery would have the opportunity to enact large-scale policy change by bringing regional and national class-action lawsuits against the government concerning unconstitutional laws regarding immigration. Avery is currently a student in the Morehead Honors College and a Fall 2021 UGA Presidential Scholar. In addition, Avery has worked with University Housing this year as a Community Service Assistant, where she assists the residents and administrative staff in her dormitory. In her free time, Avery enjoys cheering on the Dawgs at football games and attending fitness classes at Ramsey Student Center. 

For English 1102

H. Fernando Head ShotHiranya Fernando 

Nominated by Katy Elizabeth Dwyer

Hansini Fernando is a freshman at the University of Georgia majoring in Horticulture. She’s from Warner Robins, Georgia and has lived here for about four years. She enjoys reading and gardening, and she loves to experience and learn through the new opportunities that academics provide her. She aims to stay persistent with learning and taking up new chances that will help her flourish as a student and person and help her nurture meaningful connections through the rest of her years at the University of Georgia.

Excellence in Teaching Award

G. StecherEnglish Department Winner: Gabrielle Stecher

The Center for Teaching and Learning administers the Excellence in Teaching Award (ETA), sponsored by the Graduate School. This highly competitive award recognizes UGA graduate students who have demonstrated superior teaching skills and contributed to teaching beyond their own classroom responsibilities. The Excellence in Teaching Award is the top teaching award for graduate students at UGA.



Outstanding Teaching Assistant Awards  

English Department Winners: Gina Abelkop, Emily Beckwith, Nick Ciavarra, Zachary Perdieu, Hannah Warren​​​​​​​, and Christina Wood

The Center for Teaching and Learning administers the Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award, sponsored by the Office of the Vice President for Instruction. This award recognizes the top ten-percent of teaching assistants demonstrating superior teaching skills while serving in the classroom or laboratory.  


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