Congratulations to the winners of the 2013 Betty and Edgar Sweren Student Book Collecting Contest. The annual competition, which is sponsored by the Friends of the Libraries and was endowed in 2007 by longtime Friends Betty and Edgar Sweren, recognizes the love of books and the art of shaping a thoughtful and focused book collection.

The contest is open to all registered Johns Hopkins University students, and entrants must submit a bibliography of up to 50 items and an essay describing the collection.

“This contest is one of the highlights of the year at the libraries,” said Winston Tabb, Sheridan Dean of University Libraries and Museums. “We are given the opportunity to learn about some fabulous collections and to meet the truly fascinating individuals from across the university who created these very personal book collections. I want to thank all who entered and to congratulate this year’s winners.”

First prize for the undergraduate division was awarded to Lily Boettcher, from the Krieger School of Arts & Sciences, for her collection The Publication of American Values and the Formation of “Nation,” 1870-1915. There was a tie for first prize in the graduate category, with Krieger School student Amanda Zecca and Elisabet Pujadas, a student at the School of Medicine and the Whiting School of Engineering, each receiving top honors for their respective collections, From Berkeley to Black Mountain: Avant-Garde Poetry, 1945-1965 and Deconstructing Santiago Ramón y Cajal. Boettcher, Zecca, and Pujadas each received $1000 for their winning entries.

Second prize in the undergraduate category was awarded to Joseph Shaikewitz, from the Krieger School of Arts & Sciences, for How Do You Spell Contemporary?: Defining, Discovering, and Displaying Today’s Art World. Janet Jai, also from the Krieger School, garnered second prize in the graduate division for poemArt and Its Predecessors (Finding Out Where I came From). Both Shaikewitz and Jai were awarded $500. There were no third place winners in either category this year.

“We are delighted that the overall quality of the entries not only has increased every year, but also that the 2013 event certainly has produced a bumper crop of exceptional merit, resulting in a graduate division first place tie for two especially remarkable and unique collections,” said Betty Sweren.

Selections from this year’s winning entries will be on display on M-level of the Milton S. Eisenhower Library through July 1.

One thought on “2013 Student Book Collecting Contest Winners Announced

  1. As a student, I see this contest every year, but this year the winner’s selections were bland, unimaginative, and offered nothing new.

    Thank you for your note and for taking the time to examine the exhibition. Sorry you didn’t find this year’s winners to your liking. The judges were very enthusiastic about the entries we received this year, and you are more than welcome to submit your collection next fall when the contest begins again.

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