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MFA creative writing student is among the NAACP’s Image Award nominees

A student in Chapman University’s MFA in Creative Writing Program has been nominated for an NAACP Image Award. Mauri Helffrich (MFA ’16 ) co-authored the book Big Words to Little Me: Tips and Advice for My Younger Self, an Image Award nominee in the category of Outstanding Literary Work-Instructional.

Under the pen name Jessie Lee, Helffrich co-wrote the book with dancer, actress and writer Sakina Ibrahim. The book offers girls guidance on how to navigate life’s challenges as they grow from childhood to adulthood.

The literary awards will be announced Thursday night at a non-televised event. The entertainment awards, which include special honors for Empire’s Jussie Smollett and John Legend, will be handed out during a TV broadcast from the Pasadena Civic Auditorium on Friday, Feb. 5, on TV One.

Established in 1967 at the height of the civil rights movement, the NAACP Image Awards is the nation’s premier event celebrating the outstanding achievements and performances of people of color in the arts, as well as those individuals or groups who promote social justice through their creative endeavors.

Dawn Bonker

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