Catawba convocation features Jill McCorkle
Catawba College will mark its 160th year of operation when students, faculty, and staff gather for Opening Convocation on Thursday.
Author Jill McCorkle, a native of Lumberton, will be the speaker for the event that begins at 11 a.m. in Omwake-Dearborn Chapel.
Catawba President, Dr. Joseph B. Oxendine will convene the college for the 2011-12 academic year, while representatives from the College Board of Trustees, the Faculty Senate, the Staff Council and the Student Government Association will bring greetings. The convocation marks the first formal occasion of the college for the academic year.
McCorkle has the distinction of having her first two novels, “The Cheerleader,” and “July 7,” published on the same day in 1984 at the age of 26. She graduated from the UNC Chapel Hill in 1980, after studying with Max Steele, Lee Smith and Louis D. Rubin, and from Hollins College with an M.A.
Her teaching experience is extensive. She has taught at Tufts University, UNC Chapel Hill, Duke University, Bennington College, Harvard University, where she served as chair of the creative writing program, and Brandeis, where she was the Fannie Hurst Visiting Writer. She is currently a professor in the MFA in Creative Writing program at N.C. State University.
McCorkle is a member of the Fellowship of Southern Writers and now has eight books to her credit, five of which have been named New York Times notable books. Her stories have been published in The Atlantic, Southern Review, and Oxford American, among others. Her story, “Intervention,” is included in the most recent edition of the Norton Anthology of Short Fiction.
She has received the New England Book Award, The John Dos Passos Prize for Excellence in Literature, and the North Carolina Award for Literature. In addition to her published fiction, her essays and review have appeared in The New York Times Books Review, The Washington Post, The News & Observer, Southern Living, Real Simple, and the American Scholar.
Today, after many years of living and teaching in the Boston area, McCorkle is back in her native North Carolina and lives in Hillsborough with her husband.