Mixing poetry and astronomy

Dr. Laura Long, associate professor of English at LC, has been awarded a Mednick MemorialFellowship to do research in Bath, England this summer for a book on the first female professional astronomer.

Dr. Long will work on her book-in-progress, A Path Between the Stars: Poems about Caroline Herschel. Herschel (1750 to 1848) and her brother William Herschel did groundbreaking research in Bath, and the house where they lived and worked is now the Herschel Museum. 

While in England in June, Dr. Long will also present a paper at the Seventh Biennial International Auto/Biography Conference in Sussex, England. Her presentation is titled “A Poetics of Life Writing, Interrupted: Caroline Herschel and Telling Fragments.” 

The Maurice L. Mednick Memorial was created in 1967 in honor of a young Norfolk industrialist who died from accidental causes. The Mednick Memorial Fund is administered by the Virginia Foundation for Independent Colleges (VFIC) to encourage the professional development of college teachers and improve their academic competence through fellowships for research and advanced study. Since 1975, approximately 515 research grants have been awarded to the colleges.

Founded in 1952, the VFIC is a nonprofit fund-raising partnership supporting the programs and students of 15 leading private colleges in the Commonwealth: Bridgewater College, Emory & Henry College, Hampden-Sydney College, Hollins University, Lynchburg College, Mary Baldwin College, Marymount University, Randolph College, Randolph-Macon College, Roanoke College, Shenandoah University, Sweet Briar College, University of Richmond, Virginia Wesleyan College, and Washington & Lee University.