Swansea University became the first British University to run an English module based solely on a literary prize, where students examine contemporary works of fiction, poetry, drama and short story collections longlisted for the Swansea University International Dylan Thomas Prize. Students undertaking the module wrote reviews and blogs, and recorded a series of informative podcasts with the six shortlisted authors. These were successfully co-published with the Wales Arts Review.
24 internship opportunities were created as part of this year’s prize, which offered students the chance to gain valuable experience in event management, hospitality and public relations. Students helped with the organisation and running of the prestigious award ceremonies and the Prize related events that took place at the world-renowned Hay Festival.
‘This module was the most beneficial and enjoyable module of my final year, it gave me the knowledge and experience to help kick-start a career in publishing after university.’ (Molly Holborn)
‘Thanks to Dr Nick Taylor-Collins and Dr Elaine Canning for all they have done concerning this module. I think I speak for each member of the class when I say it has changed us for the better. May it continue to do so!’ (Jacob Fleming)
‘I thought that the Dylan Thomas Prize module was a welcome break from the traditional modules featured on the English Literature degree. So much emphasis is placed on looking backwards that it's been a great opportunity to take the skills we learned in our first two years and apply them to contemporary novels. And, I couldn't have thought of a better lecturer to bring the module to life than Dr Nick Taylor-Collins. I'd very much like to see it continue as it's a brilliant addition to the syllabus.’ (Daniel Morgan)
‘It's been eye-opening to learn about the processes involved in the Dylan Thomas Prize — from the submission process, to the PR, to the judging and shortlisting. Placing the module in the second semester of third year also gives us a great chance to draw on what we've learned over the course of our degree and apply it to the texts we encounter — and the fact that the books are new to everyone, including the tutor, makes for an interesting range of approaches. And, of course, the opportunity to meet the authors, and discuss their work, is a really great experience.’ (Niall MacGregor)