Sara Swenson, a Ph.D. student in the Department of Religion in Syracuse University’s College of Arts and Sciences, has been selected to receive this year’s Mary Hatch Marshall Essay Award, an annual award for the best essay written by a graduate student in the humanities at Syracuse University. Swenson’s essay is entitled “Subject to God: Ecumenical Monasticism and the Making of the Shared Self.” She is a native of Brainerd, Minn.
Full- and part-time students from the following departments are eligible for the award: African American Studies; English; Fine Arts; Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics; Latino-Latin American Studies; Religion; Philosophy; the Writing Program; and the Women’s and Gender Studies Program. Faculty members who served on the Marshall Award Selection Committee were Gerry Greenberg (chair), Ben Bradley, M. Gail Hamner, Janis Mayes, and Stephen Meyer.
Library Associates established the annual award to honor and help perpetuate Mary Hatch Marshall’s scholarly standards and generous spirit. Members of Library Associates, Marshall’s friends and family, the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation, and the Central New York Community Foundation all contributed to the endowment established in 2004 that funds the award.
Born in 1903, Marshall graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Vassar College, received a Ph.D. from Yale University, and was later named a Guggenheim Fellow. She joined the SU faculty in 1948 and became the first woman to achieve the rank of full professor in The College of Liberal Arts. During her tenure, Marshall held the Jesse Truesdell Peck Chair in English literature; helped to establish the Honors Program, serving as its first director; and was among the founding members of Library Associates. After retiring from full-time teaching with emeritus status, Marshall continued to offer courses through the Humanistic Studies Center at University College until 1993. Among the awards and honors she received were the Post-Standard Award for Distinguished Service to the Syracuse University Library, a Chancellor’s Citation, and an Outstanding Teacher of the Year Award.