Camden Campus, Rutgers — The State University of New Jersey
Contact: Tom McLaughlin
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Rutgers–Camden Receives $10,000 NEA Art Works Grant for Writers in Camden Series

CAMDEN — Thanks to a $10,000 National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Art Works grant, Rutgers–Camden is poised to become a literary hub in South Jersey. The NEA grant will support the university’s Writers in Camden series, which brings renowned writers to Camden for workshops and readings that are free of charge and open to the general public. Guest writers this year will include Rutgers-Camden alumnus Chinelo Okparanta and Pulitzer Prize winner Junot Diaz.

“We’re particularly proud of our literary program, and of the people we’ve brought to campus,” says Lisa Zeidner, a professor of English, who co-wrote the grant proposal with Patrick Rosal, an assistant professor of English, at Rutgers–Camden. “We’re starting to get real traction in terms of audience attendance. These programs are good for Rutgers–Camden and good for the city of Camden.”

In August 2012, the NEA received 1,547 eligible applications for Art Works grants requesting more than $80 million in funding. Art Works grants support the creation of art that meets the highest standards of excellence, public engagement with diverse and excellent art, lifelong learning in the arts, and the strengthening of communities through the arts. The 817 recommended NEA grants total $26.3 million and span 13 artistic disciplines and fields. Applications were reviewed by panels of outside experts convened by NEA staff and each project was judged on its artistic excellence and artistic merit.

The upcoming Writers in Camden Series will run September 2013 through April 2014. Most readings are held at 7 p.m. in the Stedman Gallery, and are followed by Q & A sessions and receptions with the authors.

The Writers in Camden series is also sponsored by the Office of Sponsored Research and Programs and the Office for Campus Involvement at Rutgers–Camden.

For a complete listing of projects recommended for Art Works grant support, please visit the NEA website at