TODAY, March 24, is the Deadline to RSVP for the CAALS VIP Reception and Dinner

RSVP DEADLINEThis year, Marygrove’s Contemporary American Authors Lecture Series welcomes US Poet Laureate NATASHA TRETHEWEY. She will read from her works at 8:00 p.m., April 4, 2014, in Alumnae Hall, with a book signing and reception to follow.

We hope that you and your friends will join us this year. As in previous years, the evening reading and reception are without charge. However, to keep the evening without charge, we are continuing to offer you two special opportunities.

First, we are offering you the opportunity to join us at a VIP reception and dinner honoring Natasha Trethewey prior to the reading. Along with benefactors and friends of the series, corporate and foundation donors will be on hand to meet Trethewey and the Marygrove community, and to honor Marygrove student winners of the Mary Helen Washington, and Frederick P. Currier/Amy S. McCombs Writing Awards, competitions held in conjunction with the series. Please note that

• Cocktails begin at 5:00 followed by dinner at 6:00.
• You will have a choice of a meat or vegetarian dinner entree.
• You will receive reserved seating at the reading.

Faculty and staff reservations are available at the reduced rate of $75 per person, a savings of $25 off the regular price. The cost for all others is $100 per person. You may arrange to pay through payroll deduction, but the full amount must be deducted prior to the event. If you would like to purchase dinner tickets, Tiffany Alexander would be happy to send you a printed invitation that includes a response card and return envelope. We will need the response card returned by Monday, March 24, 2014.

Second, we offer the opportunity to support the series as a friend. We would be pleased to have you counted among the loyal supporters, as many of you have been over the life of the series. Contributions of $10 or more will get you listed on the “Friends” page in the program. In order to include your name in the program book, we will need your contribution by Monday, March 24, 2014. Please send contributions to Tiffany Alexander, noting whose name should appear in the program. Contributions will be accepted after March 24, but we may be unable to include your name in the program.

Please join us the evening of April 4, 2014. If you wish more information, contact Tiffany Alexander at or (313) 927-1443.
Thank you for your continued support of the Contemporary American Authors Lecture Series.

Want to watch CAALS speaker Terrance Hayes? You’ve got 3 options.

Empty Alumnae HallYou’re only hours away from watching the 25th annual CAALS speaker, acclaimed author and poet Terrance Hayes!

If you’d like to watch tonight’s free event at 8:00 pm, you have 3 options:


1.) In person: Alumnae Hall, Marygrove College, 8425 W. McNichols Road in Detroit.
2.) On Facebook:
3.) On UStream:

For more information, please visit

Get your 25th anniversary CAALS t-shirt before they’re gone!

CAALS shirtTo commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Contemporary American Authors Lecture series, we’ve made some snappy looking t-shirts. They are $15 and you can purchase them from Laurie Kopack: or 313-927-1383.

This year we are featuring poet Terrance Hayes; he will conduct a master class for Detroit area high school students on Friday, April 19, 2013 at 10:30 a.m. That same evening, the public is welcome to attend the evening lecture at 8 p.m. which will be followed by a book signing. The event is free and open to the public.

In addition, to commemorate the series’ anniversary, there is an art exhibit in Marygrove’s Beyond Words Gallery featuring Michigan artists who explored the themes of the nationally renowned authors who presented public lectures at CAALS over the past 25 years. The exhibit is now open and runs until May 17, 2013.

Pictured: Marygrove student Gaoussou Cisse models this year’s CAALS tshirt.

25th Annual CAALS Special Exhibit

CAALS ExhibitThe 25th Annual Contemporary American Authors Lecture Series Special Exhibit  begins on March 28th at 6:00 p.m.

Over the past 25 years, the annual lecture series has featured a number of critically acclaimed writers including Jamaica Kincaid, Octavia Butler, Samuel Delany, Paul Beatty, Harryette Mullen and more!  To commemorate the twenty-fifth anniversary of the lecture series, 25 Metropolitan Detroit artists were invited to create art inspired by the themes & cultures of the featured authors.

This exhibit features artwork by local talented artists: Corrie Baldauf, Christopher Batten, Jennifer Mercedes Boyak, Taurus Burns, Sue Carman-Vian,  John Corbin, Rose E. DeSloover, Mantrell Goodrum, Tim Gralewski, Mary Lou Greene, Christine Hagedorn, Lisa Luevanos, James Lutomski, Erin Marie McDonald, Alaina Plowdrey, Kathy Rashid, Rachel Reynolds, Karen Sanders, Tylonn J. Sawyer, Sally Schluter Tardella, Vito Jesus Valdez, Robert Zahorsky, and John Zawadski,

Beyond Words Gallery at Marygrove College
8425 West McNichols Detroit MI 48221

Mary Helen Washington Writing Award Contest Winners Announced

The Department of English and Modern Languages at Marygrove College has just completed the judging for the third year of the Mary Helen Washington Writing Award Contest, offered in conjunction with its Contemporary American Authors Lecture Series (CAALS). Named after nationally-renowned scholar, editor, essayist, and teacher Dr. Mary Helen Washington, and supported through the generosity of series sponsors Lillian and Don Bauder, this annual contest asks students to write essays in response to the works of the CAALS guest artist. This year’s students were asked to write essays or poems in response to the works of this year’s guest artist, National Book Award-winning poet Terrance Hayes.

The College is pleased to congratulate the 2013 winners, listed below with their winning entry titles, schools, and teachers:

Grand Prize: Sarah Mokh, “Lighthead’s Guide to Poetry,” an essay, Fordson High School, Kerry Howell

Second Prize: Lujine Nasralla, “Quid Sit Ars Poetica?,” an essay, Fordson High School, Kerry Howell

Second Prize: Zekeyra Phillips, “Emotions,” a poem, Cass Technical High School, Vicki Green

Second Prize: Skylar Wilkes, “Pieces of Perception,” a poem, Cass Technical High School, Vicki Green

The winners will receive their recognition at the Master Class with Mr. Hayes on the morning of April 19, 2013.

This year marks the 25th Anniversary of the Bauder Contemporary American Authors Lecture, and features a reading and book signing by Mr. Hayes, which will take place at 8 p.m. on Friday, April 19, in Alumnae Hall on the Marygrove College campus. The event is free and open to the public.


Students are invited to submit work for upcoming writing award– cash prizes

terrence_hayesThe Marygrove College English and Modern Languages Department announces

The Amy S. McCombs-Frederick P. Currier Writing Award

Cash Prizes Totaling $1,000

In honor of award-winning poet Terrance Hayes’s appearance on campus as the 25th guest speaker of the Contemporary American Authors Lecture Series, we invite student writing inspired by Mr. Hayes’s work. You may submit a poem, short story, or play; a personal, reflective essay; or a critical analysis of some aspect of Hayes’s writing. Continue reading

2012 Amy S. McCombs/Frederick P. Currier Writing Awards Winners Announced

Please join the Marygrove College English and Modern Languages Department in congratulating the winners of the 2012 Amy S. McCombs/Frederick P. Currier Writing Awards held in conjunction with the Contemporary American Authors Lecture Series: Continue reading

Extra! Extra! Read all about it: CAALS T-shirts being sold this Friday!

T-shirts for the 2012 Contemporary American Authors Lecture Series (CAALS) featuring writer Paul Beatty will again be available for purchase! Show your support for this premiere Marygrove event by sporting this great-looking shirt designed by Marygrove’s own Kathy Blanchard, IHM! Continue reading