SHU alum donates poetry collection to Walsh Library

Seton Hall Alumni and famous poet, Maria Mazziotti Gillan, recently donated 386 new books of poetry to the circulating collection at the Walsh library this Dec.

Dr. Marta Deyrup said all of the books in the donation are American poetry ranging from 2010-2012, and are from major publishers. The entire collection was added to the fourth floor of the library which is publicly available for students to check-out now.

According to Gillan, she began accumulating a large collection of contemporary poetry from judging contests and decided to use these texts to give back to Seton Hall.

“As long as I’m judging contests I will continue to donate books to that collection,” Gillan said.

According to Deyrup, the donation from Gillan is a special collection that enhances the circulating section at the library.

“It’s wonderful when alumni love the university so much and give back to it,” Deyrup said.

Most donations to the library are “rare materials” made to the special collections center on the first floor. The donation made by Gillan is unique because it’s a large collection of recently published books for the circulating collection on the fourth floor. It will allow English majors or anyone to “know what’s new and out there” in the contemporary world of poetry, said Deyrup.

Gillan said she attended Seton Hall University as an English major, and eventually went on to publish fifteen books of poetry, found the Poetry Center at Passaic County Community College where she is now the executive director and win multiple awards for her work.

“I really have to thank Seton Hall for the big push they gave me and for hiring such wonderful teachers,” Gillan said.

Gillan said she has appeared on numerous radio shows, and has read her work at universities, festivals, and centers all over the country and parts of Europe.

According to Gillan, the opportunities provided at Seton Hall gave her solid foundation to her career, she hopes the collection of books may do the same for aspiring writers.

“If you’re going to write, you have to read. You have to read everything that you can get your hands on,”Gillan said.

Every book in the collection is from a major publisher, and Gillan stated that it provides an opportunity for students to “get more excited about what’s going on in contemporary literature.”

“I’d encourage everybody to come to the library and see the books,” Deyrup said. “We’d be happy to introduce anyone and give a tour of the collection.”

Deyrup and Anthony Lee are the English department Liaisons to the library, and can personally help with any questions about the collection.

Mary Marshall can be reached at

Author: Mary Marshall

Mary Marshall is the Editor In Chief of The Setonian. She is a senior at Seton Hall, originally from Chicago. Mary is currently majoring in journalism and minoring in political science. She is a former intern for NBC Dateline, Tom Brokaw and MSNBC. Mary reports on local crime and breaking news on campus.

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