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            OXFORD, Miss. – John Hodges, a published fiction writer enrolled in the University of Mississippi’s acclaimed master of fine arts in creative writing program, has been awarded a $3,000 scholarship by the university’s MFA committee.
            Philanthropist Jim Barksdale funded the scholarship as part of his support for the creative writing program.
            “I am deeply honored by the award,” said Hodges, of Florida and Alaska. “The many writers and outstanding teachers of Oxford have in the short time that I have been here offered so much support and inspiration. I greatly value their dedication and friendship.”
            Hodges’ short stories have appeared in more than a dozen print journals, including American Short Fiction, The Chattachoochie Review and Iron Horse Literary Review. His story “Crying Babies in Heaven” was nominated for a Pushcart Prize.
            As a photographer, Hodges participated in Light Work’s artist-in-residence program. His photographs have appeared widely and can be seen in the current issue of His poem The Teller on the Right” is slated to appear in Rattle, a biannual poetry journal, in December.
            “We must rely on donors to be truly excellent,” said Barry Hannah, director of the MFA program. “We are lucky for Barksdale and John and Renee Grisham, our angels and stone-fine, stand-up people.”
            “This award assists the Department of English to continue its progress toward excellence in the delivery of its degrees,” said Patrick Quinn, department chair. “Thanks to our generous benefactors, we are proud of our high-rated MFA program and the professors who make Ole Miss a top choice for graduate education.”
            Hodges received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Florida State University.
            The MFA program in creative writing recently has been listed by The Atlantic Monthly magazine as one of the five up-and-coming writing programs in the nation.
            For more information about the UM Department of English, call 662-915-7439 or go to .

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