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Frederick Douglass Day

Conferences & Institutes

The Department sponsors several conferences and institutes where people can come together to share knowledge and learn from each other, with both professional and public audiences. 

The Brian M. Conley Young Writers’ Institute

For the past twenty years, UT students and faculty members have inspired area high school students and their teachers to write prose and poetry. More than 1,300 students have attended the annual daylong writing workshop.

Locally and nationally recognized writers lead workshops for students in poetry, fiction, songwriting, screenwriting, journalism, and performance poetry; and peer-oriented workshops for teachers of writing. Writing instructors from Knoxville and surrounding areas are invited to exchange ideas while gaining instruction from a lineup of accomplished and published writers.

Formerly known as the Young Writers’ Institute, the program was renamed to honor UT alumnus and former Metro Pulse owner Brian M. Conley, who gave an endowment to the program a decade ago, ensuring it will continue for many years to come.

The Stokely Writing Conference

This conference takes place each summer and brings together local high school teachers for several days of workshops. Participants learn techniques and strategies to help teach writing to high school students.

NEXUS Interdisciplinary Conference

NEXUS is a biennial, interdisciplinary conference hosted by the graduate students in the University of Tennessee’s English department. In 2022, the theme of NEXUS was “Community and Collaboration: How the Light Gets In,” and featured speakers Joshua R. Eyler, Ross Gay, and Maren Linett.