Maria Vertkin

English | Entering Year: 2022 | Robert R. Anschuetz Memorial Olin Fellow

Maria Vertkin is an MFA candidate in the Creative Writing program, focusing on nonfiction. Her writing explores migration, erasure, colonization, ancestral/transmitted treasures and traumas, and plurality of identity. She also enjoys writing fairytales for grownups! Prior to attending Washington University, Maria spent fifteen years in the nonprofit sector, including eleven years as the Executive Director of Found in Translation, a Boston-based nonprofit organization she founded in 2011 with the dual mission of creating economic mobility opportunities for multilingual women and reducing racial and linguistic disparities in healthcare. Maria holds a Bachelor of Social Work degree from Regis College, and is the recipient of the Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowship for New Americans.

In Fall 2022, Maria was awarded the Robert R. Anschuetz Memorial Olin Fellowship in American Cultural Studies. The award is to recognize scholarly work concerned with issues of race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, class, and other social contrasts that spur so much debate, expression, and conflict within the United States and across borders.