Alumnus Gregory Pardlo

Rutgers University–Camden alumnus Gregory Pardlo recently earned the Pulitzer Prize for poetry for his collection Digest (Four Way Books, 2014). Pardlo CCAS’99 received the honor for his “clear-voiced poems that bring readers the news from 21st-century America, rich with thought, ideas, and histories public and private,” the Pulitzer Prize jury said. Digest has been nominated for several other literary honors, and the collection made the New York Times’s “Ten Favorite Poetry Books of 2014.”

“Greg’s distinctive voice and raw talent for poetry were clear from the first creative writing workshops that he took,” says Lisa Zeidner, a professor of English at Rutgers–Camden. Pardlo credits Zeidner’s poetry workshop for sparking his interest. “Lisa showed me possibilities within the genre, and taught me discipline in the craft that filled a need in me I hadn’t been able to name,” says Pardlo, who lives in Brooklyn and is a teaching fellow in undergraduate writing at Columbia University. — Tom McLaughlin