September 25, 2022
Keegan Waller

The English Department’s Creative Writing committee has named Keegan Waller their 2022 Student of the Year! According to the nominating committee, “Keegan is an exceptionally talented writer who isn't afraid to take risks and do hard things in his writing. His work reveals depths of human experience and emotion under the surface of everyday work and relationships. His writing is curious and observant, thoughtful and empathic, full of striking imagery, characterization, dialogue, and great sentences. Keegan is deserving of this award, as well, for his work as nonfiction editor on our undergraduate literary magazine, Sink Hollow, where he has employed his talents in building a writing community and helping to produce a first-class magazine. He has been praised by faculty advisors as “‘one of the strongest and most congenial genre editors we've had.’”

Keegan has always been a writer, but he didn’t decide to pursue a Creative Writing emphasis until he began his college career. His inspiration sprouted from his English 1010 professor at Salt Lake Community College, the writer A.J. Ortega. During his undergraduate studies, Keegan took pleasure in his work within the program and his connections with faculty and peers. Recently graduated, he had only good things to say about his time at USU: “My experience in the Creative Writing program at Utah State has been nothing but positive, from my amazing professors who pushed me to improve, my amazing peers who offered feedback on my work and allowed me to read their own, to my time reading submissions for Sink Hollow.”

Keegan is now enjoying his graduate studies at USU. His schoolwork keeps him busy, but he continues to journal and write for his courses. The department looks forward to his future creations and pursuits!