Renowned Purdue poet keynotes university's summer commencement

August 3, 2013  

Marianne Boruch

Marianne Boruch 
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WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Marianne Boruch, the Purdue professor who in March won the prestigious Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award, keynoted the university's summer commencement ceremony.

The summer commencement ceremony was Aug. 3 in the Elliott Hall of Music. There were 1,174 candidates for graduation, which included 662 graduate students, 510 undergraduates and two professional degree-seekers.

Boruch earned international acclaim in March when it was announced that she had received the Kingsley Tufts award for "The Book of Hours," which was published by Copper Canyon Press. The award is given annually to a mid-career poet by Claremont (Calif.) Graduate University. The $100,000 prize that goes with the award is one of the largest monetary prizes for writing in the United States.

summer commencement 2013

Purdue President Mitchell E. Daniels Jr., presents a diploma to a new graduate during commencement ceremonies on Saturday (Aug. 3) in the Elliott Hall of Music. (Purdue Photo/Mark Simons) 
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Boruch came to Purdue in 1987 as creative writing professor, developing and directing the master of fine arts program from its inception until 2005. In addition, she has taught at summer writing conferences, including Bread Loaf in Vermont. Her work includes seven collections of poetry, two books of essays on poetry, and a memoir. Her poems and essays have been published in such places as The New Yorker, Poetry, The Nation, Poetry London, The Paris Review, and the American Poetry Review. She has received numerous awards, including fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts

"Commencement - what a curious, heartening word for the grand finale of so much hard work and discovery," Boruch said. "We need to cheer and honor every graduate."

Commencement videos will be available. A DVD costs $30, and order forms are available at Stewart Center's Loeb Playhouse box office or by calling 765-494-3933. The deadline for ordering is two weeks after the ceremony.

For more information, call 765-494-6157 or email

Purdue has been holding summer commencement ceremonies on the West Lafayette campus since 1984.

Related information: Text of Marianne Boruch's commencement address

Writer: Jim Bush, 765-494-2077, 

Source: Christine DeHahn Pass, assistant registrar for records, registration and graduation, 765-494-6163,

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