Beiling Wu Prize in Writing

The Beiling Wu Prize in Writing, named for a former Northwestern graduate student in the humanities, will be given to a doctoral or MFA student who wrote the best essay on literature or literary culture in the first year of his/her program.


Monday, June 24, 2019 (by 11:59 pm)


  • Students must be nominated for a paper written in their first year.
  • Students must be in a humanities doctoral program or a TGS MFA program.
  • Each eligible program may nominate one student.


The amount of the award is $1000, which will be added to the student's stipend. One prize will be awarded each year.

Application Instructions

  • Applications are by program nomination only.
  • Directors of Graduate Study (DGS) should select the best paper as of the end of the first year review.
  • A letter of nomination from the DGS must accompany the paper.  The letter should:
    • Provide a contextualizing frame about the nature of the submission (i.e., was it a final paper for a seminar, etc.)
    • Include brief commentary about how the essay fits within but also challenges some current trends in the field
    • Note how the paper stands out relative to other first year students in the program
    • Include any evaluative comments from the instructor of the course, if the paper results from a course assignment
  • The paper and letter of nomination should be sent as PDF files to All materials must include the student's full name.

Review Process

Papers will be reviewed by a committee. Nominees and nominating programs will be informed of the outcome by the end of September.


Email for more information.