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Bowsprit Earns Superior Distinction from the National Council of Teachers of English

Bowsprit Earns Superior Distinction from the National Council of Teachers of English

Tabor Academy’s art and literary magazine, Bowsprit, has been recognized as a superior magazine by the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) for the 2023 Recognizing Excellence in Art and Literary Magazines (REALM) program. The REALM program publicly recognizes excellent literary magazines produced by students with the support of their teachers and is designed to encourage all schools to develop literary magazines that celebrate the art and craft of writing. This year, schools in 46 states and five countries nominated 375 student magazines, representing work from middle school to college-aged students. 

Throughout the year, the Bowsprit team conducts calls for submissions by making announcements at All School Meetings, hanging up flyers around campus, and encouraging their peers to participate.

“Our submissions range from paintings to poems, ceramics to short stories, and highlight the diversity of mind the Tabor community has,” writes the Editors’ Note in the latest issue of Bowsprit. “Since last year’s edition was not released, this year we offer you a double issue featuring 2022’s work under the theme, ‘Behind the Mask’ and 2023’s works under the theme, ‘Fear and Hope.’”

If you hold the magazine one way, cover-art by Shanna Yuan ’23 introduces the “Behind the Mask” collection. If you flip it over, the cover-art by Emma Zhou ’23 reveals the works of “Fear and Hope.” Yuan’s artwork features a subject covering their face in black-and-grey, while they are surrounded by a rainbow of vibrant colors. Zhou’s artwork almost parallels Yuan’s, the cover and subject both being black and grey, with the subject opening a birdcage to reveal light and color.  

According to the magazine’s faculty advisor Chris White, Bowsprit is 100% student produced. He says, “The magazine beautifully illustrates the creativity, imagination, and resourcefulness of the editors and contributors. When Tabor emerged from the darkness of Zoom and the cover of masks, student artists and writers created a wide range of visual and written pieces to try to make sense of their worlds. The editorial board over the past three years has included some of Tabor's top artists and writers, and we're fortunate that a core group from last year are back for the 2023-2024 production.”

Congratulations to the Bowsprit editors from 2022 and 2023 on this significant recognition: Cece Clemente ’24, Effie Gao ’24, Bryn Kerslake ’23, Natalie Konowicz ’24, Lizzie Simmons ’24, Ivana Zhang ’24, Emma Zhou ’23, Emeli Fowler ’22, Aliyah Jordan ’23, Max Richardson ’22, Erin Sweeney ’22, Sarah Bohlman ’22, and Shanna Yuan ’23.

“The award was very validating for us as a group,” says Simmons, self-proclaimed “Submission Wrangler.” “This was most of our first times being involved in anything like creating the magazine, so it was really cool to get and has definitely made us more excited to get to work collecting submissions and assembling another great magazine.”

Tabor looks forward to sharing a digital version of the 2022 and 2023 edition once it is available.