Orange Alert

Writing Center 6-Word Memoir Winners Announced

Posted on: May 13, 2021


When the Writing Center launched its 6-word memoir contest, we weren’t sure what to expect. We knew the year was difficult, and we knew that students (and faculty) were tired of spending time on Zoom. We also knew energy was low and stress levels were high.

Yet when given just six words, students surprised us with moments of resilience, occasional sparks of hope and optimism, and insight into how they are managing in difficult times. The memoirs revealed grace, wit, and a very real need for caffeine. Students talked about the challenges of finding internships and the value of connection, even when standing six feet apart.

Two winners were chosen from close to 90 submissions:

  • “Life is short, say yes more” by Molly Harrigan, a freshman Magazine, News, and Digital Journalism major
  • “Stay out of your own way” by Aaqilah Wright, a senior Writing and Rhetoric major

Both received a $25 gift card to Starbucks.

Other excellent entries included:

  • Andrew Lieberman, “A person needs connection, not WIFI”
  • Clarena Paez, “My MacBook feels like an oven”
  • Wilson Sosna, “Paid internships? Never heard of them”
  • Chase Sumpter Gillyard, “There was not nearly enough coffee”
  • Sasha Temerte, “Still forming friendships, six feet apart”

Thanks to all who submitted six-word memoirs! And thanks to Patrick W. Berry, Emily Dressing, Ben Erwin, Jonna Gilfus, Faith Plvan, and Sidney Turner for helping to select the winners.

The Writing Center will be open for both online and in-person appointments this summer, beginning June 7. For more information, visit