Jan. 7, 2021
For Immediate Release
Brantford – Wilfrid Laurier University has appointed 2020 Scotiabank Giller Prize winner Souvankham Thammavongsa as the inaugural Laurier Stedman Fellow for a period of three years.
Thammavongsa, a creative writing instructor in Laurier’s English program at the Brantford campus, won the Scotiabank Giller Prize for her book of short stories How to Pronounce Knife. Thammavongsa’s book is a New York Times Editors’ Choice and on the list of Time magazine’s 100 must-read books of 2020.
“I am immensely grateful to the university for giving me this amazing opportunity to work and to engage with the talent that is here in the community,” said Thammavongsa. “I am especially so pleased I get to call Laurier home.”
The Laurier Stedman Fellowship was established by the university to honour the wishes of the late Mary Stedman, whose endowment to Laurier was intended to help foster arts and culture at the university's Brantford campus and in the Brantford and area community. The Laurier Stedman Fellowship will allow the university to bring Canadian artists of international calibre to Brantford and area, boosting arts and culture in the region.
“We are overjoyed with the work Souvankham is doing with our creative writing students and look forward to seeing her contributions to the wider campus and community that the Laurier Stedman Fellowship will enable,” said Ken Paradis, English program coordinator at Laurier’s Brantford campus.
The Laurier Stedman Fellowship and the Laurier Stedman Prize, a $10,000 biennial creative writing contest for local high school students, were created under the guidance of the English program at Laurier’s Brantford campus as a way to honour Stedman’s wishes.
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