Marvin E. Williams Scholarship Drive to Open With Memorial
"The Caribbean Writer" - the Literary Gem of the Caribbean - is
hosting the first Annual Marvin E. Williams Scholarship Drive in
honor of former editor Marvin E. Williams, a home grown Crucian
scholar, poet and former professor of English on UVI's St. Croix
On Friday, Nov. 19, beginning at 6 p.m., UVI invites the entire
Virgin Islands community to come out to honor the memory of Marvin
E. Williams who died April 7, 2010. The memorial will take place in
the Great Hall of the North West Wing on the St. Croix campus, with
a videoconference link to the first-floor conference room at the
Administration and Conference Center on the St. Thomas
Known in the community as a professor of English, an accomplished
poet and scholar, Williams taught at UVI from 1992 to 2008 and
served as editor of The Caribbean Writer from 2003 to 2008.
A Cornell University graduate, who attended Central High School,
Williams was deeply committed to his community and felt a profound
need to contribute to the social and literary development of his
homeland. In addition to his three individual collections, "Ebony
Field" (1976), "Dialogue at the Hearth" (1993) and "Overture to
Kin" (2007), Williams also edited and compiled the seminal text,
"Yellow Cedar Blooming-An Anthology of Virgin Islands Poetry"
(1998). The publication provides a historical overview of writers
from the entire Virgin Islands from as early as 1897.
In "Seasoning for the Mortar," he provided another groundbreaking
collection of poems and stories by Virgin Islands writers who were
published in "The Caribbean Writer" from Volume 1 (1987) to 15
(2001). These two impressive volumes, as well as his individual
collections, are evidence of Williams' scholarship, poetic
abilities and commitment to exposing other writers to both the
region and beyond. This is why the present editor, Dr. Opal Palmer
Adisa, saw fit to establish a scholarship to both honor and
celebrate the achievements of this important local, but also
internationally recognized, writer.
The program is jam packed and will prove to be educational,
motivational and entertaining. A select number of UVI students will
present choral readings of Marvin Williams' poems which have been
selected by Dr. Adisa. There will be dancing in Williams' honor and
speeches by those who knew him, including his wife, Dasil. The UVI
choir will sing and other surprise guests are expected. The event
location on the St. Croix campus is the Great Hall, with a
videoconference link to the Administration and Conference Center on
the St. Thomas campus. For the minimal cost of $10 for adults and
$5 for children/students, attendees will get to participate in a
historical event that speaks to the achievement of one of St.
Croix's own. Middle school and high school teachers and students
are urged to attend, along with the community at large.
All proceeds will go towards awarding a student with a $1,000 UVI
scholarship toward tuition and books.