UH Manoa creative writing professor Ian MacMillan selected for Distinguished Graduate Mentoring Award

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Posted: Apr 26, 2006

The UH Manoa Graduate Division has announced that its annual Distinguished Graduate Mentoring Award for 2006 will go to Professor of English Ian MacMillan.

MacMillan has taught in the UH Manoa Creative Writing Program since 1966. He is author of seven novels and four short story collections, has made over a hundred appearances in literary and commercial magazines, and has won awards for his short fiction including The Associated Writing Programs Award, The O. Henry Award, Pushcart Prize, and a Best American Short Stories Award. He received the 1992 Hawaiʻi Award for Literature, and his novel Village of a Million Spirits won the 2000 PEN-USA-West Award for Fiction. Recent novels include The Braid, published last summer by Mutual Publishing, and The Seven Orchids, out from Bamboo Ridge Press this past March. Both books are set in Hawaiʻi.

The mentoring award was established last year so that current or former students could nominate their faculty to recognize excellent mentoring — one of the foundations of outstanding graduate education. The UH Manoa Graduate Council selected MacMillan from a pool of more than a dozen nominees.

"The support and guidance of experienced, professional teachers and scholars such as Professor MacMillan are critical to the success of our students doing graduate work," said UH Manoa Chancellor Denise Konan. "We applaud the Graduate Council‘s initiative in identifying outstanding faculty for this annual recognition."

A letter of nomination for MacMillan said, "Ian embodies all of the Council‘s criteria. While he continues to publish an unbroken stream of short fiction and novels, he provides guidance to an astonishing number of students who benefit from his artistic discernment, conscientious instruction, and strong advocacy. Each of us feels privileged to study with a prolific, award-winning author who liberally shares his time and expertise. In short, he actively helps each student fulfill his potential as a writer by devoting countless hours to reading manuscripts, offering insightful advice, writing letters of recommendation, and encouraging students toward publication."

During its deliberations, the Graduate Council identified a "short list" of three finalists. In addition to Professor MacMillan, the others were C. Mike Douglas, Director of the Globalization Research Center and Professor of Urban and Regional Planning, and Ricardo Trimillios, Professor and Interim Dean, School of Hawaiian, Asian and Pacific Studies.