Montpelier's VCFA Well Represented In 2015 Children's Book Awards

Feb 9, 2015

Vermont College of Fine Arts, in Montpelier, was in celebration mode last week as the American Library Association announced its annual awards for young adult and children's literature. Three alumnae, one of whom is now on the faculty, and a former faculty member of the school's Masters of Fine Arts program in Writing for Children and Young Adults earned ALA honors.

“These awards are further proof of the caliber of students who come to VCFA and the success of our MFA programs,” said Matthew Monk, VCFA's academic dean. “We are thrilled that the American Library Association recognizes these authors in such a meaningful way.”

The school sent out a press release acknowledging the following ALA honorees:

  • Class of 2008 alumna Jandy Nelson’s novel I'll Give You the Sun is the winner of this year’s Michael L. Printz Award for excellence in literature written for young adults. It also received an honor in the Stonewall Book Award – Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s & Young Adult Literature Award given annually to English-language children’s and young adult books of exceptional merit relating to the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender experience.
  • Kekla Magoon, '05, and a new faculty member, received a Coretta Scott King (Author) Book Award honor that recognizes an African American author and illustrator of outstanding books for children and young adults. Her young adult novel How It Went Down also received a starred review from Kirkus Reviews and was a Junior Library Guild Selection.
  • Julie Berry, class of '08, received an honor for the recording of her novel The Scandalous Sisterhood of Prickwillow Place in the Odyssey Award category for best audiobook produced for children and/or young adults, available in English in the United States.
  • Brown Girl Dreaming, by former faculty member Jacqueline Woodson, earned both a Newbery honor for a distinguished contribution to American literature for children and Sibert honor for a distinguished informational book published in the United States in English. In November Brown Girl Dreaming was named a National Book Award winner.

“We are incredibly proud of Kekla, Jandy, Julie and all of our talented alumni,” said Melissa Fisher, director of the Master’s of Fine Arts in Writing for Children & Young Adults program. “And we’re grateful to see their rigor, commitment and breadth of work recognized by these prestigious awards. Well done!”