Liza Case: Creative Writing/Chinese Studies

Liza Case

Creative Writing/Chinese Studies

B.A., June 2010, Summa cum Laude

Thomas W. Smith Academic Fellowship

Jane Chambers Student Playwriting Award

Richard Shepard Award for Excellence in Creative Writing

Stark Award in Drama

Dean’s List

Liza Case’s interest in China came about while working in Shanghai for a month in 2004, producing a show with Jacques D’Amboise and the National Dance Institute. When she returned, she started studying the language in an adult education course, then picked it up again when she entered City College. An accomplished writer, having been published and produced and having founded a newspaper about independent film that she published for nine years, she entered CUNY Baccalaureate with the plan of learning how to write about China. She’d already written a bit about Chinese-language film, but she knew she needed to expand her knowledge of their culture and history. Additionally, although already a published writer, she had never experienced receiving feedback on her writing, and looked forward to that from her writing classes.

While attending school, she was also raising her toddler son as a single parent, freelancing for a magazine and working as a reader for several screenplay contests.  Despite all of those the demands, she excelled in all her courses; Prof. Salar Abdoh, one of her mentors from the English department at City College, considers Case to be in the top one percentile of students he has ever taught. (Her second mentor is Prof. Ya-Chen Chen, Foreign Language, City College.) Prof. Drew Hopkins, Asian Studies, City College, refers to her as “positively brilliant, consistently producing elegant and insightful papers, marked by uncommon clarity and depth.”

For her Creative Writing area, Case included an independent study in Non-Fiction writing, as well as two writing courses from City College’s MFA program. Through these workshops, she wrote a full-length play, The Unspoken Ones, for which she won The Stark Award in Drama at City College, as well as the 2010 Jane Chambers Student Playwriting Award.  She also earned 15 life experience credits from CUNY Baccalaureate for her prior work in screenwriting, film production, acting and journalism.

Case will be graduating in June 2010 with a near-perfect GPA.  She has been accepted, with a full scholarship, to the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University for an MFA in Dramatic Writing.