Retired Miami Dade College (MDC) professor and alumnus Geoffrey Philp was recently awarded a Silver Musgrave Medal in Literature by the Institute of Jamaica at the University of the West Indies in Kingston, Jamaica. Awarded annually in recognition of excellence in art, science and literature, the Musgrave Medal is named in memory of Sir Anthony Musgrave, the founder of the Institute and the former Governor of Jamaica.
“Miami Dade College gave me a second opportunity to earn a college degree,” said Professor Philp. “It was the first place where I won prizes for my poetry. These prizes gave me the validation that I was a poet and the confidence that I could write for an American audience.”
Philp is the author of more than 12 books of poetry and fiction. His poems and short stories have been published in World Literature Today, Oxford Book of Caribbean Verse, sx salon, Caribbean Writer, Oxford Book of Caribbean Short Stories, Pree and Johannesburg Review of Books.
Throughout his career, Philp earned many awards for his work, including the Marcus Garvey Award for Excellence in Education (2022) and a Luminary Award from the Consulate of Jamaica (2015). His poem, “A Prayer for my Children,” is featured on The Poetry Rail at The Betsy, an homage to 12 writers that shaped Miami culture.
His forthcoming collection of poems, “Archipelagos,” borrows from Kamau Brathwaite’s “Middle Passage” lecture, Aime Cesaire’s “Discourse on Colonialism,” Sylvia Wynter’s “1492” and Amitav Ghosh’s paradigm in The Nutmeg’s Curse to explore the relationship between Christianity, colonialism and genocide in the Plantationocene. He is currently working on a graphic novel for children titled “My Name is Marcus,” and a collection of poems “Letter from Marcus Garvey.”