Professors honored by Arts Council

By Gary Budzak

April 20, 2014

Ohio Wesleyan University recently announced that two of its professors have earned awards, an important hire was made and a talk will be held this week.

English Professor David Caplan and Theatre & Dance Professor Bonnie Milne Gardner earned $5,000 grants and Individual Excellence Awards from the Ohio Arts Council.

“Both Bonnie and David are so talented and bring so much to the Ohio Wesleyan and Delaware communities,” OWU spokesman Cole Hatcher told The Gazette. “We’re excited to see their accomplishments recognized by the Ohio Arts Council. The award certainly is named appropriately in their cases.”

Gardner’s award, her second, was for her play “The Secret War of Emma Edmonds,” which is based on the story of a woman who claimed to have been a soldier during the American Civil War. The work premiered at OWU in October.

“The resources I’ve had at OWU have been instrumental in the success of this script,” Gardner said in a statement.

Caplan earned his award for criticism related to his recently published book, “Rhyme’s Challenge: Hip Hop, Poetry, and Contemporary Rhyming Culture” (Oxford University Press). In “Rhyme’s Challenge,” Caplan suggests that hip-hop artists are the new poets, using their arsenal of wordplay in the realms of doggerel, insult and seduction.

“I hope readers will gain a better appreciation of the hip-hop artists’ verbal artistry,” Caplan said in a statement. “I came to write the book after many students asked me, ‘Is hip-hop poetry?’

In other OWU news, Susan Dileno was appointed vice president for enrollment. Starting this summer, she will oversee the offices of admission and financial aid, and help prospective students and families navigate the college-enrollment process. Dileno held a similar position at Baldwin Wallace for 11 years.

Lastly, Alumnus David Paul will discuss “International Public Service in Dentistry” at 7:30 p.m. April 24 at the R.W. Corns Building, 78 S. Sandusky St. The event is free and open to the public.

Paul, who graduated from OWU in 1985 and is a professor at Tufts University, will discuss his experiences building a mobile dental clinic in the Dominican Republic.