Poet Mary Ann Samyn will be the featured poet at the annual Esther Goldhaber Jacovitz Poetry Series being held at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 25 in the J. Irving Whalley Memorial Chapel on the Pitt-Johnstown campus. Ms. Samyn is associate professor in the master of fine arts creative writing program at West Virginia University and author of Rooms by the Sea, which is a winner of a Kent State Press Chapbook Prize; Captivity Narrative, a winner of an Ohio State University Journal Prize; Inside the Yellow Dress; Purr, and Beauty Breaks In.
“A generous endowment from a Pitt-Johnstown alumna Esther Goldhaber Jacovitz has made this series possible. Each spring, our Writing program invites a poet of national nature to read on the Pitt-Johnstown campus. This year we are very pleased to welcome the dynamic and vibrant Ms. Samyn. Her poetry has been widely published and much awarded,” Dr. Eric Schwerer, Pitt-Johnstown associate professor of writing, said.
Her work has been featured in many of the nation’s best literary journals. She also has been awarded the Emily Dickinson Prize from the Poetry Society of America, the James Wright Prize, and a Pushcart Prize.
Born in Cambria City, Esther Goldhaber Jacovitz graduated from Johnstown High School in 1933, then attended Pitt-Johnstown from 1933-1936 when it was located on the second floor of Johnstown High School, where she majored in history with a minor in English. She attended the University of Pittsburgh from 1936-1937.
The event, which is being sponsored by Pitt-Johnstown’s Creative and Professional Writing program, is free of charge and open to the public. A book signing will follow.
The Esther Goldhaber Jacovitz Poetry Series began in 2004. Previous poets have included Terrance Hayes, Nick Flynn, J. Allyn Rosser, Thomas Lux, Marilyn Chin, Mark Halliday, and Lynn Emanuel.
Founded in 1927, Pitt-Johnstown is located in the Laurel Highlands of Western Pennsylvania and is the first and largest regional campus of the University of Pittsburgh. The University offers a high-quality educational experience in a supportive living-learning environment designed to prepare students for the real world of the 21st century. Pitt-Johnstown is recognized by U.S.News & World Report as a “Best Baccalaureate College” (2010), by the Princeton Review as a “Best Northeastern College” (2010), and by G.I. Jobs as a “Military Friendly School.” Additionally, Pitt-Johnstown has been named to the 2009 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll.
Pitt-Johnstown…at the forefront of leading baccalaureate colleges…