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Festival Enhances Students,Teachers

by aec

An editorial published in the March 26th in the Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Festival Enriches Students, Teachers

Though the Chattanooga Festival of Writers, which convenes here Friday, is relatively young, it already has earned a justifiable and widespread reputation for excellence from the readers and others who attend it as well as from the authors who present the programs. Less known, but just as valuable to the community and region are the student enrichment programs and professional development workshop for teachers that are a vital part of the festival.

Sponsored by the Arts and Education Council, the festival is a companion to the council’s heralded biennial Conference of Southern Literature, which is held in oddnumbered years. The Friday and Saturday festival offers addresses, readings and other events at the downtown Sheraton Read House and on the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga campus. The student programs, which emphasize the importance of creative writing, complement the festival’s regular programming.

Winners of the Young Southern Student Writers program, a poetry and prose competition for K-12 students, will be announced Thursday at Memorial Auditorium. The competition is a major event, as evidenced by the record 3,900 entries — up from 500 in 1999 — submitted by students in area school systems and home school associations. The entries are judged by members of the English Department at UTC. It obviously is a task enjoyed by the university professors. “We are thrilled that the Young Southern Writers contests continue to grow at such a rapid pace,” says Dr. Verbie Prevost, chairman of the program since it began. “What a splendid opportunity for students to demonstrate their creativity and be recognized for it.” It is, indeed.

The Classroom Residency program is another important segment of the enrichment program associated with the festival. The residency allows students to read an author’s work and then to meet him or her to discuss it and the creative process. Authors will visit five county schools on Thursday and Friday as part of the program. It’s a win-win situation. Students learn from professional writers and the authors are able to interact with youngsters who like to write.

In addition, the AEC offers a Creative Writing Workshop for Hamilton County teachers in conjunction with the festival. Several award-winning authors at the Friday event will offer fresh insight on the best ways to bring the world of writers and writing to students in their classrooms.

The AEC’s Festival of Writers has gained a place of prominence on the expanding list of the community’s productive and varied cultural events, and it understandably has won the affection and patronage of area residents. The inclusion of enrichment programs that directly touch hundreds of the area’s students and teachers makes the festival especially noteworthy.

This story was published Wednesday, March 26, 2022

Point of View TV Now Online

by aec

For the first time ever, the Arts & Education Council's television show, Point of View, is available as a podcast on the AEC website.

The most recent episode featured writers participating in the upcoming Chattanooga Festival of Writers, March 28 & 29, 2008.

More episodes will be available each week.

You can also watch Point of View, the longest running locally produced show of its kind, on Channel 12 at 5:30 AM on Sundays, and on Cable Channel 3 at 10 AM on Thursdays and 9 PM on Fridays. The radio version airs on Sunday mornings on 96.5 FM - The Mountain, Sunny 92.3 FM, ESPN radio 1370 AM and Ruby 1310 AM.

Point of View offers a great underwriting opportunities! Interested businesses or individuals should contact the Arts & Education Council, 423-267-1218.

Enjoy the show!