SUNY Canton Receives National Endowment for the Arts Grant for Living Writers Series

SUNY Canton Lecture SeriesThe National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) announced it will award SUNY Canton $10,000 to support the college’s popular Living Writers Series.

The series, which began in 2012, has hosted 15 prominent literary guest speakers from across the country. All events are free and open to the public. According to SUNY Canton Assistant Professor of English Phil K. LaMarche, the award funding will be used specifically to bring globally recognized authors to campus in conjunction with African American and Native American History months.

“I’d like to thank the National Endowment for the Arts for supporting the Living Writers Series,” said LaMarche, who created and directs the series. “This award will help foster discussions of diversity on campus at a time when they are greatly needed across our country.”

Throughout the past several years, the series has grown in popularity and guests have included renowned writers such as bestselling authors Mary Karr, William Rhoden and George Saunders. This year leading environmental activist and climate change pioneer Bill McKibben drew a crowd of more than 700 attendees from throughout the North Country region.

McKibben, Saunders, Karr

“The Living Writers Series has proven to be a valuable asset to SUNY Canton and the community,” LaMarche said. “We have brought a diverse list of creative artists and intellectual minds to our campus to engage with our students and the greater community.”

The award is part of the NEA’s “Challenge America” program, which aims to support projects that benefit populations whose opportunities to experience the arts are limited by geography, ethnicity, economics or disability.

Phil A. LaMarche poses for a photo with Award-winning New York Times columnist and bestselling author William Rhoden.

Phil K. LaMarche poses for a photo with Award-winning New York Times columnist and bestselling author William Rhoden.

“The arts are part of our everyday lives – no matter who you are or where you live – they have the power to transform individuals, spark economic vibrancy in communities and transcend the boundaries across diverse sectors of society,” said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. “Supporting projects like SUNY Canton’s Living Writers Series offers more opportunities to engage in the arts every day.”


About SUNY Canton

SUNY Canton is Northern New York’s premier college for career-driven bachelor’s degrees, associate degrees and professional certificate programs. The college delivers quality hands-on programs in engineering technology, health, management and public service and recently received number one rankings in library resources, library services and tutoring services in the SUNY Student Opinion Survey. The college’s faculty members are noted for their professional real-world experience in addition to outstanding academic credentials. SUNY Canton OnLine offers hundreds of flexible and convenient courses as well as ten exclusively online bachelor’s degrees. The college’s 14 athletic teams compete as members of the NCAA Division III.

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