Weekly Round-Up

2021 Undergraduate Creative Writing Awards:

The English Department is pleased to announce its annual undergraduate literary competitions in Short Fiction and Poetry. Depending on available funding, there will be 2-3 prizes in Fiction and 2-3 in Poetry this year. Past prizes have ranged from $100 to $1000.  Submission deadline: February 28.

Contest rules are as follows:
Short Fiction: Submit no more than one unpublished story (7500 words, maximum length)
Poetry: Submit up to 200 lines, as a single unpublished poem or a group of unpublished poems

Only University of Illinois undergraduate students are eligible. To be considered for a prize, submissions must adhere to the following rules:

  • All submissions must be sent via email as an attachment to: jdudek4@illinois.edu.
  • The subject line of your email message must read as follows: “UNDERGRAD POETRY: Last name” or “UNDERGRAD FICTION: Last name”
    • If you enter in both categories (poetry and fiction), you will need to send separate emails.
  • In the body of your email, please include:
    • Your name
    • address
    • phone number
    • e-mail address
    • status (undergraduate student)
    • UIN
  • Your entry is to be contained in one attached .docx file. The name of this file must be the contest category followed by your last name, such as “FICTION JONES.docx” or “POETRY JONES.docx” Your name should not appear within the document itself.

Please direct any questions to John Dudek, Associate Director of Creative Writing at Jdudek4@illinois.edu

ESC Weekly Meetings Every Tuesday at 7:00pm on Zoom

Black Lives Matter: From the Frontlines of Criminal Justice Reform:

Join Center for Advanced Study for a conversation with Los Angeles-based artist, activist, educator, and public speaker Patrisse Cullors. The event will be held on 18 February 2021 at 4:00 pm CST. Register here https://illinois.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_tckcSKztRz-BODg602tDDA. Form more information visit http://cas.illinois.edu/node/2413.


Join the WRC, Women & Gender in Global Perspectives, and the Bruce D. Nesbitt African American Cultural Center for a virtual book club! They will be diving into Hood Feminism: Notes from the Women That a Movement Forgot by activist, writer, and Illinois alum, Mikki Kendall.

The book club will be held on Monday, February 15 @ 6 p.m. CST. Register now – the first 30 registrants will receive a free copy of the book! Register for the book club here https://illinois.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_KoR5hOWTR0y3nrqYbB_I9g.

The author event will be held on Tuesday, March 2 @ 6 p.m. CST. Mikki Kendall herself will join the club for a (virtual) author talk and share what led her to write Hood Feminism and more. For the author even, register here https://illinois.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_apAetqoLT023K4BfEhTEXg.


Women & Gender in Global Perspectives and the Women’s Resources Center will host a virtual screening of the acclaimed documentary, RBG. This film follows the life and legacy of the late Supreme Court Justice, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and it will be available for viewing, for free, beginning at 4 p.m. CST on Tuesday, February 16th until 4 p.m. CST Thursday, February 18th.

On Wednesday, February 15th at 4 p.m. CST, there will also be a virtual conversation with the film’s directors, Julie Cohen and Betsy West.

2nd Annual International Women’s Day Photography Contest:

March 8th is International Women’s Day! As part of the annual celebration events, including Women’s History Month throughout March, the Women’s Resources Center, OIIR-International Education and International Student and Scholar Services are hosting the 2nd annual photography contest. The top awards will be given during the Global Engagement Lounge on March 10, 2021. Share your talent and submit an original photo that celebrates women’s achievements, experience, and resilience! Deadline for submissionsFebruary 24, 2021.

Black History Month 2021 Calendar:

Check out this collection of events and programs taking place this month in honor of Black History Month. Shout-out to the Bruce D. Nesbitt African American Cultural Center for compiling this exciting calendar!

February 17, 2021:

CONTRA-TIEMPO: ARTS & SOCIAL ACTION | Bruce D. Nesbitt African American Cultural Center https://go.illinois.edu/FoodForTheSoul

February 18, 2021:

BLACK LIVES MATTER: FROM THE FRONTLINES OF CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM | Center For Advanced Study https://cas.illinois.edu/node/2413


February 19, 2021:

NOBCCHE BLACK HISTORY MONTH CONFERENCE | National Organization for the Professional Development of Black Chemists and Chemical Engineers (NOBCChE) https://go.illinois.edu/NOBCChE

February 20, 2021:

NOBCCHE BLACK HISTORY MONTH CONFERENCE; DAY 2 | National Organization for the Professional Development of Black Chemists and Chemical Engineers (NOBCChE) https://go.illinois.edu/NOBCChE

BLACK SACRED MUSIC SYMPOSIUM XV | University of Illinois Black Chorus https://forms.illinois.edu/sec/959018119

February 21, 2021:

PASSPORTS AND PASTRIES: A VIRTUAL BLOCK PARTY AND PASSPORT INITIATIVE; DAY 1 | #Hei Butterfly The Initiative https://www.facebook.com/HeiButterflyThelnitiative

February 22, 2021:

PASSPORTS AND PASTRIES: A VIRTUAL BLOCK PARTY AND PASSPORT INITIATIVE; DAY 2 | #Hei Butterfly The Initiative https://www.facebook.com/HeiButterflyThelnitiative

SERVICE WITHIN THE BLACK COMMUNITY | Health of the Homeless, Contact: Healthofthehomeless@gmail.com

February 23, 2021:

THE ARTS AS ACTIVISM: A CONVERSATION WITH NIKKI GIOVANNI | Bruce D. Nesbitt African American Cultural Center  https://diversity.uic.edu/nikki-giovanni-webinar/

COCOA HOUSE | Eusa Nia https://go.illinois.edu/CocoaHouse

February 25, 2021:

ADVANCING HEALTH EQUITY THROUGH COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT AND ANTI-RACISM | Carle Illinois College Of Medicine https://go.illinois.edu/Carle

February 28, 2021:

THE HARLEM RENAISSANCE PROJECT | Illinois Theatre Department https://vimeo.com/488679496

All February:

BLUES DANCING AND ITS AFRICAN AMERICAN ROOTS EXHIBIT | Spurlock Museum of World Cultures at Illinois https://go.illinois.edu/BluesDancing



The Bailey Undergraduate awards are $3000 awards ($1500/semester) given each year to undergraduate students at the University of Illinois who have demonstrated positive impact and commitment as a result of service, community involvement, leadership, and action. Financial need and academic achievement will also be considered. University of Illinois – Urbana campus undergraduate students in all programs are eligible to apply.

For more information or to apply online, visit: universityymca.org/bailey/undergrad 

Application deadline: February 28.

Zoom Office Hours: 2021-22 Undergraduate Scholarship Application

Tuesday, February 23, 2 PM – 4 PM CST | Register to join | Facebook event

Friday, February 26, 10 AM – 12 PM CST | Register to join | Facebook Event

Counseling Center Clinical Services for Spring 2021:

For Spring 2021, Counseling Center is offering telehealth (online) counseling and virtual outreach and educational programming. For specifics of how this works, please view this blog post.

For after-hours emergencies, students who remain in the Champaign-Urbana area can reach out the Champaign County Crisis Line staffed by Rosecrance at 217-359-4141. We also have an extensive list of resources available on our website, including a listing of crisis lines throughout the United States.

Tuesday @ 7:

Led by Counseling Center Paraprofessionals, Tuesday @ 7 workshops focus on topics that are often growth areas for students. All students are welcome. Upcoming workshops include:

Tuesday, February 16: You’re Not Alone: Coping with Loneliness

Tuesday, February 23: Mental Health 101: Building Awareness and Skills

To attend a Tuesday @ 7 workshop, please use Zoom ID 844 1537 2453 (Password: tue7)

The complete list of topics for this semester can be found here

RIO Online:

These times are not easy. Feeling isolated and lonely is very common, and life is very different than it was before the pandemic. Many people are having strong reactions to these changes. RIO, which is led by Counseling Center clinicians, provides an interactive experience that helps you

-Learn mindfulness skills to identify why you’re feeling the emotions you are and accept them.

-Manage stress, anxiety, and other emotions productively.

-Identify what’s most important to you and prioritize accordingly.

This series is open to all Illinois students—you do not need to be a current client of the Counseling Center. RIO is not considered counseling and is not confidential. It offers courses throughout the semester at different times and days to meet scheduling needs. Please register on its website.

In Focus Workshops:

In Focus workshops are designed to address concerns students with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and ADHD-like symptoms commonly have. This series is typically offered once in the fall and once in the spring semesters.

For Spring 2021, In Focus will meet on Monday March 1,8, 15, 22, and 29 from 3-4:30 p.m. To register for In Focus, please complete this form.

Rutgers English Diversity Institute (REDI):

The Rutgers English Diversity Institute (REDI) is a one-week summer program at the New Brunswick campus of Rutgers University. This year REDI week will be held virtually from June 5 to June 11. REDI is designed for advanced college students and recent graduates whose cultural, ethnic, and socioeconomic backgrounds may contribute to diversity in the fields of English and American literary studies. At REDI, students will learn about traditional and nontraditional subfields and critical approaches in English and American literary studies from Rutgers University faculty. REDI activities will include seminars, lectures, workshops on applying for graduate school and on digital resources in literary studies, a trip to a research library, and a cultural excursion to New York City. Up to fifteen students, chosen from a national pool of applicants, will each receive a $750 stipend for participating in the program. For more information and application visit https://english.rutgers.edu/redi-home.html.

Strengthening and Empowering Educators of Diverse Statuses (SEEDS):

SEEDS, Strengthening and Empowering Educators of Diverse Statuses, is a new student-led organization that focuses on meeting the unique needs of undergraduate students of color in the College of Education. Note: if you are an English major on the Sec Ed track then you are also eligible to participate. 

It strives to create a safe haven in which students are welcome to have an open dialogue about struggles, as well as build community through mentorships, strengthening ally relations, and engaging in community outreach. Members of SEEDS will have access to a variety of resources that will help them grow in their professional development journey.

If you are interested, please reach out via email at seedsillinois@gmail.com. Feel free to check out our website as well https://seedsillinois.weebly.com/.

Summer 2021 Virtual Global Experiences:

Virtual Global Experiences provide students the opportunity to work remotely with organizations around the world, collaborate on hands-on projects, and conduct research with international faculty and peers. Students will participate in a 1 credit pre-professional course during the term they conduct the virtual project and are encouraged to investigate additional internship or independent study credit options within their departments.

You can also browse student portfolios from previous terms for a glimpse into their experiences and reflections.

The deadline to apply is March 15, and students can submit applications through the My Study Abroad Portal

For more information visit https://www.studyabroad.illinois.edu/outgoing-students/virtual/ and see the following flyers:

Campus Study Halls:

Beginning Feb. 16, the Wellness Ambassadors program will begin hosting campus study halls. Wellness Ambassadors support the university’s COVID-19 educational compliance efforts by providing health resources to the university community. The study halls offer students the opportunity to study in select campus classrooms while the ambassadors ensure compliance with testing requirements, face coverings, and adherence to room capacity.

Study halls will be offered as follows:

  • Tuesdays from 5:30-8pm—Everitt Lab 2310
  • Thursdays from 6-9pm—Bevier Hall 108
  • Sundays from 6-9pm—Gregory Hall 100

This information is posted here along with other information on classroom study space options. Please help spread the word!

Expressive Art Drop-In Group:

The Counseling Center will be starting a new workshop titled Art Space: Creative Self Care & Coping. This is a drop-in workshop held on Mondays from 3-4pm, first session is on 2/22.

This workshop is for those who:

  • Enjoy coping through art (e.g. drawing, playing music, dancing, singing, writing)
  • Are looking to learn new coping skills
  • Are struggling to articulate/understand their internal experience
  • Are looking to connect with others.

For the zoom link and meeting ID, see the flyer below:

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