The Calista Cummings Award

An Akron schoolteacher who taught math with poetry, Calista Cummings created and edited Akron’s earliest successful literary magazine, The Akron Offering. Working with limited assistance, inadequate funding, and an inexperienced local publishing industry, she provided a forum for Midwestern authors to exchange original literature in 1849 and 1850. Her magazine only survived for twelve monthly numbers, but Cummings' editorial work, characterized by a “clear head” and a “kind heart,” was fondly remembered for many decades.

Prize: TBD, but historically:

  • Undergraduate: $100

  • Graduate: $100

Who can enter:

  • All UA graduate and undergraduate students.

Submission Guidelines:

  • Students must submit a paper on a topic in American Literature before 1900. The paper must be written for a class during the preceding academic year.
  • Cover sheet must include student name, email address, student ID number, and class for which the paper was written.
  • Students must use a header with page numbers and last name of the student on each page.
  • The paper must be double-spaced in 12-point font, preferably Times New Roman.
  • Save the title of your document in “LAST NAME-Award Title” format (for example, SMITH-Cummings Award).
  • Upload your document in PDF form.
  • Access to the submission form will re-open in the Spring 2023 semester.