Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Bonnie Jo Campbell ('98) wins Guggenheim Fellowship

Bonnie Jo Campbell, an English Department alumna (MFA in Creative Writing/Fiction, 1998) nominated two years ago for a National Book Award, is one of the recipients of a prestigious Guggenheim Fellowship in Fiction for 2011. For information about the fellowships, see HERE.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Emeritus Professor, Arnold Nelson, dies at age 92

Arnold G. Nelson

Arnold G. Nelson, age 92, of Verona, WI, died peacefully at the Hospice Center in Fitchburg, WI on November 13, 2010.

He was born July 10, 1918 to Frank and Anna Nelson in Stillwater, MN, where he spent his childhood. He graduated from Hamline University in St. Paul, MN, and after serving in the Army Air Corps in World War II (where he was stationed at Truax Field in Madison, WI), he returned to school at the University of Minnesota to earn a Master’s degree, and a PhD in American Studies.

He enjoyed a long career as a college professor teaching English and Communication. He spent a year at Stout Institute (now the University of Wisconsin-Stout) in Menomonie, WI, and then settled down for twenty-six years in the English Department of Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo, MI. During this time he and a colleague produced a radio program on communication called “We Mean to Say” for the University radio station, and he received a Fulbright Grant to teach American Literature in Turku, Finland for the 1964-65 academic year. He approached teaching with a creative flair, always seeking new American writers and other artists to engage his students. He retired as a Professor Emeritus in 1980.

Upon retirement, he and his wife Helen moved to Ludington, MI and took up many projects and adventures. Their travels included rafting on the Colorado River, camping on Isle Royale in Lake Superior, and trips to England, Sweden and Iceland. He received a grant to journey to Alaska where Helen’s grandfather, Edwin M. Randall had traveled and taken many photographs of the mining operations and living conditions during the height of the Gold Rush. He and Helen spent the summer taking photos and doing research, which led to publication of an article in the Alaska Journal.

Since moving to the Madison, WI area in 2003, he spent his time exploring the internet, e-mailing friends and keeping current on politics and the newest generation of writers. At the age of 90 he completed a memoir and critique of writing titled How to Write a Good Sentence: A Manual for Writers Who Know How to Write Correct Sentences, which was published in the Spring & Summer volume (Volume 27, Number 1 & 2) of the Alaska Quarterly Review.

His family and friends will remember him for his sense of humor, his great wealth of obscure knowledge about books, art and architecture, and his passionate interest in the panorama of American culture and liberal thought.

He is survived by his wife Helen, and his daughters Kristine Seaman (Barney) of Chattanooga, TN, Ingrid N. Kelley of Madison, WI, and Linnea Nelson (John Martin) of Owen Sound, Ontario, Canada. He is also survived by grandchildren Zack Czengoldi and Robin Seaman of Chattanooga, TN, Carmen Nave (John Verne) of Waterloo, Ontario, and Lenore Brooks (Ryan) of Toronto, Ontario; and great-grandchildren Maia and Logan Disbrow of Chattanooga, TN and Ada Verne of Waterloo, Ontario.

Memorials may be made to the Heifer Project through their web site. Please go to the Nelson Family page at http://www.heifer.org/myregistry/anelson.