McGovern Writes Her Future

Graduate Abigail McGovern Plans to Continue Studies in Creative Writing


Courtesy Photo

Abigail McGovern, Ferrum graduate, poses for a pic in Key West, FL on a family vacation in 2021.

Lindsey M. Foster, Editor

An English major ended a chapter in life and will begin to write another.

This semester, the Iron Blade said goodbye to December graduate and staff member Abigail McGovern.

After seven semesters, McGovern will be graduating with a major in English with a Creative Writing emphasis and minors in History and French.

“I’ve always wanted to be a writer,” McGovern said.

With this free semester, McGovern will be applying to graduate schools to receive a degree in Creative Writing.

“I didn’t initially plan to go to grad school,” McGovern said.  “I just thought I’d maybe start looking for industry jobs, but now I realized I still have a lot to learn to tell the type of stories I want to tell.”

In the fall of 2019, McGovern came to Ferrum from Round Hill, V.a., and continued the activity of long-distance running that she has been doing since she was 11 by joining Ferrum’s Cross Country Team.

“The first time I came to Ferrum I was terrified,” McGovern said. “I thought college seemed so overwhelming and I was here early for XC so I was mostly alone in my dorm and they’re the only people I knew.”

After completing Cross Country until her junior year, McGovern was also involved in different programs and organizations on campus during her college career. She was involved in the Boone Honors Program, served on the board of the National Society for Leadership and Success as their Membership Outreach Chair, and was also a PAL Tutor.

McGovern is mostly known for her diligence in Ferrum’s literary magazine, Chrysalis. She was on staff for all seven semesters and served as Editor-in-Chief for the publication for five semesters.

“She is reliable,  responsible, and dedicated,” said Katherine Grimes, advisor for Chrysalis. “The magazine has grown throughout the service of all the previous editors with whom I have worked, and Abigail’s tenure as editor-in-chief has seen even more advances.”

McGovern stated how much being a part of the publication has helped her and the publication grow.

“I rapidly found a family there they’ve pushed me to be a better writer and to come out of my shell every day I’ve spent on staff,” McGovern said. “I’m going to miss being a part of it very much. In a lot of ways, I don’t know I am without Chrysalis.”

While working on Chrysalis, McGovern grew her writing skills by learning journalism when she joined the Iron Blade.

“I had never really done any journalism writing before, so I was interested in seeing what another side of professional writing looked like,” McGovern said.

This was McGovern’s first and last semester on staff.

“I’m really glad I that I did join and I feel like everyone on staff was like a little family working together to make the campus a better place,” McGovern said. “I had a lot of fun and I’ll miss both journalism and the staff.”

McGovern also held roles in two other clubs on campus.

She also joined Help Save the Next Girl her sophomore year and became Co-president in the fall of 2021. McGovern worked alongside other Co-president, Emma Brubaker, senior and advisor Lana Whited.

“The organization’s mission aligns directly with her (Abigail’s) concern for the welfare of others,” Whited said. “One of the things I appreciate most about Abigail is her complete lack of ego and subsequent dedication to fostering everyone else’s success. As a campus leader and as a classmate, she is always focused on helping others be their best.”

McGovern also assisted in revamping the English Department’s Undead Poets Society this semester, which is a reboot of the English Club. She built the club with Celeste Burnett, senior, and advisor Daniel Murphy.

“Owing to her existing work with Chrysalis and the Iron Blade, we felt more fortunate to have such an adept leader ready to work and establish the club’s identity,” Murphy said. “In addition to being an unassuming leader and talented writer, Abigail is both kind and constitutionally encouraging in her disposition.”

McGovern will be back to walk across the stage this spring with the class of 2023 on May 6. She leaves Ferrum with this thank you:

“Thank you to my professors, friends, teammates, and all the people who pushed me to step out of  my comfort zone and go after the future that I want,” McGovern said. “I’m going to miss everyone so much, but I also can’t wait to see what happens next.”