Student Opportunities

ACU offers many services and activities to enrich students beyond the classroom. Students participate in special events such as the annual Lectureships, Spring Break Campaigns, social clubs and intramural and intercollegiate sports.

Study Abroad
Interested Language and Literature majors may qualify for the Study Abroad program, which allows students to gain international experience while earning class credit overseas. ACU Study Abroad locations are found in Oxford, England; Liepzig, Germany; and Montevideo, Uruguay; while other ACU students travel to other sites in Australia, China, Russia, Uganda, and more through the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities (CCCU), of which ACU is a member institution.

Dialektos
With the Dialektos program, the Department of Language and Literature offers students the opportunity to learn less commonly taught languages through directed independent language acquisition. Through Dialektos, we can help you to learn virtually any language in the world.

Sigma Delta Pi
Sigma Delta Pi is the only honor society devoted exclusively to students of Spanish in four-year colleges and universities. It is not only the largest foreign language honor society in existence, it is among the elite as attested by its membership since 1966 in the Association of College Honor Societies (ACHS), the nation's only certifying agency for college and university honor societies. Bestowal of membership in Sigma Delta Pi is an honor that will be with students for the rest of their lives. Since SDP inaugurated its Abilene Christian University’s Chapter Omega Gamma in the Fall of 2010, many students have graduated with the red and yellow cords of our Honor Society. For more information on SDP contact the adviser Dr. Beatriz Walker at beatriz.walker@acu.edu or visit Chambers 312. Learn more about member benefits

Service-Learning
ACU students volunteer in a number of community services in the Abilene area, including the following:

  • Habitat for Humanity
  • Abilene State School
  • Christian Homes of Abilene
  • University Wildcat Kids
  • Meals on Wheels
  • Hendrick Medical Center
  • Hospice of ACU

For the full list of organizations with which you might volunteer while a student at ACU, visit the ACU's office of Service-Learning and Volunteer Resources.

ACU Writing Center
The ACU Writing Center offers free service to all students, faculty, and staff for the discussion and improvement of writing tasks of any kind. Language and Literature majors, graduate students, and other capable writers from across the university staff the center, which is located in the Learning Commons of the ACU Library. Visit the Writing Center blog for more information and for writing tips.

The Shinnery Review
The Shinnery Review, ACU's annual student-produced literary magazine, offers students the opportunity for hands-on experience in soliciting work, making editorial decisions, and marketing a publication. ACU Language and Literature majors serve on the magazine's staff. 

Special Events
The Language and Literature Department regularly hosts special events like the following:

  • Def Jam Poets (slam poetry)
  • Visiting poets and writers (past guests have included Ray Bradbury, James Michener, Gwendolyn Brooks, Galway Kinnell, W.D. Snodgrass, Li-Young Lee, Robert Flynn, Walter McDonald, Naomi Nye, James Ward Lee, Kathleen Norris, and the late William Stafford, among others)
  • High Tea in the Inkwell
  • The Black Tulip (campus-wide open-mic night)

Departmental Scholarships
Several scholarships are available to Language and Literature majors each year. Rising juniors and seniors are considered for academic awards of $500-600 and for textbook scholarships of $250. These honor past faculty members--Mima Williams, Clara Mae Ellis, and Jewell Watson.

Creative Writing

  • Courses: "Fiction Workshop," "Poetry Workshop," and "Advanced Creative Writing"
  • Visiting writers who discuss writing and perform their work
  • Staff work on The Shinnery Review, campus literary magazine (learning editing and desktop publishing)
  • Opportunity to perform at the annual Black Tulip coffee house on campus. Poetry Workshop students may also perform at local art galleries.
  • Opportunity to study under published writers of fiction (Prof. Albert Haley, Dr. Preston Harper, Prof. Steve Weathers) and poetry. Albert Haley, winner of the John Irving First Novel Award, is Writer in Residence. 
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