The College Administration Announces the Termination of the Gettysburg Review

By Laken Franchetti, Editor-in-Chief

Yesterday afternoon, an email was sent to faculty from President Iuliano and Provost Jamila Bookwala revealing the termination of The Gettysburg Review. The email stated that the decision came as a result of finding that the Review did not significantly enhance the student experience.

Iuliano is holding meetings for the employee community throughout October in order to discuss the challenges and opportunities at the College.

“As we have discussed as a community, and will continue at our meeting on October 4, the changing demographic and enrollment realities across higher education require us to be as strategic as possible in the investment of our limited resources,” the email said. “We must have a more intentional focus on the programs and activities that directly and significantly enhance student demand and the overall student experience.”

The email to faculty members also acknowledged how the Review has been active at the college since its debut in 1988.

“The dedication, creativity, and passion that have gone into the Gettysburg Review over the years have enriched our community and the broader literary world. We are especially grateful for the Review’s dedicated and talented editors and staff who have made the Review what it is,” the email said.

Gettysburg Review editor Mark Drew and Managing Editor Lauren Hohle questioned if the administration truly understood what the Review’s mission was.

“There’s a lot of moving parts that the administration has no concept of,” Drew said. “We do a lot of developmental editing with writers. We are professionals. We do professional work.”

Drew and Hohle were informed of the Gettysburg Review’s termination at a meeting this past Friday, and they were not involved in prior conversations about this decision or what they could do to reverse it. The administration found that the Review’s budget could be used better elsewhere.

“We, Lauren and I, personally are heartbroken and devastated. We’re angry too, and that is the sort of thing that fuels us to keep going,” Drew said. “Honestly, in that meeting, we got the very distinct impression that they [administration] would have been okay if we had just left that day.”

In preparation for this meeting, Drew had been instructed to give the Provost’s office a “Welcome Pack” about the Gettysburg Review to introduce the new administration members to the publication and their mission. Drew and Hohle then discovered that the meeting was about ending the Gettysburg Review, and one of the administration’s arguments was that the Review did not publish work by students or faculty.

“My response to that was that was never our mission, which says to me that she didn’t bother to read the materials I gave her in that ‘Welcome Pack,’” Drew said. “It took me away from doing my job for something that someone wouldn’t read and didn’t read, and then it all resulted in that insulting and demeaning firing.”

Hohle shared her disappointment that the Review was not consulted prior to this decision.

“It is disappointing that the administration has had three years of financial crisis to have a single conversation with us and chose not to. There was no discussion about fundraising or how we could generate more income or further serve the campus with the curriculum reform that supposedly values co-curricular engagement and internship opportunities,” Hohle said.

Hohle additionally shared that the Review has expanded their grant funding by $20,000 during the past few years, yet the administration would not allow discussions on how to further fundraise or recognize financials.

“We’ve increased our funding, and there’s been no effort to talk about how we can make this more sustainable in their eyes, or even expand the way we serve the campus,” Hohle said. “We could, potentially, take on more interns, we could potentially be in more classrooms, like there are definitely more things we could be doing and we want to do, but there is no discussion about how to implement those changes.”

The English Department has worked closely with the Review to provide a publishing internship opportunity for students. The internship program started in 1995, and the Review has had approximately 80 to 90 interns over the time that this opportunity has been available. Hohle believed that the Review and its internship opportunity held a value that the college administration did not recognize.

“There is significant value to the Gettysburg Review that goes beyond our value to the literary community—value that I just don’t think they [the college administration] see,” Hohle said. “We are considered to be one of the top-ranked literary magazines in the country, if not in the English language—I don’t know of many other programs at the college that can make that claim.”

The Gettysburg Review, along with their student interns, will be active until December, and they have been told they are allowed to publish the final issue by then. The Review had already selected three interns for the spring semester, yet they will now be unable to take part in this publishing opportunity.

Current Gettysburg Review intern Savannah Metzger ’25 shared her disappointment at the Review’s termination, and she expressed her belief that the college administration does not recognize the importance that the Review holds for students.

“I just think the college does not realize that by eliminating the Gettysburg Review, it would stifle student engagement,” Metzger said. “It would take away opportunities from English majors and interns to come. The Gettysburg Review is what sets this college apart and this English Department apart from other programs.”

Professor of English Fred Leebron echoed similar sentiments and felt that the Review is a treasure of Gettysburg College.

“I believe the Gettysburg Review is the essential partner of the English Department in everything pertaining to the literary arts at Gettysburg College; that it is also a national treasure is beyond doubt,” Leebron said. “It is hard to reconcile these facts with this unsettling and stunning news.”

Professor of English and former English Department Chairperson Christopher Fee shared similar thoughts. He believed that the Gettysburg Review was something that the college could offer to students that was not available at most English departments across the country.

“There are a handful of English departments in the United States that could boast a major literary magazine, which offered their students hands-on publishing experience,” Fee said. “And we have, in my career, been one of those, and without that what do we have that’s so different from everyone else?”

Fee felt that this decision was reminiscent of another administrative move to end the program in secondary certification in English. That program was lost as a result due to the end of the education department.

“The [English] department was against that, as well, but our concerns were unheard, even as our numbers of majors and college admissions suffered immediate set backs,” Fee said.

Interdisciplinary studies adjunct instructor Matt Greene agreed that the English Department would suffer a significant impact due to the administration’s decision to end the Review: “…while English & the Humanities are struggling, creative writing is booming, and the Gettysburg Review remains one of the absolute most important journals nationally (placing in the top 10 in all categories in Clifford Garstang’s Pushcart Prize rankings for the last 10 years running). That matters because creative writing classes are filling, and the demand is only growing. By axing the Review, the college is impacting the English department in a few ways.”

Greene also expressed how losing the internship opportunity for students at the Review is an equity issue.

“Standard publishing industry internships are unpaid and in Manhattan, therefore inaccessible to any student from a middle or working class background,” Greene said. The Review, meanwhile, represents one of just a couple opportunities nationally for undergraduates to intern for a top-ranked literary magazine… all while still on-campus.”

Drew shared that the Review has received emails and messages of disappointment from former interns, alumni, subscribers and published writers.

Alumna Anna Audia ’23 participated in the Gettysburg Review’s internship during the spring of 2023, and she questioned the administration’s decision: “It is difficult to be a proud alumna when your institution’s administration terminates aspects of the College that made your Gettysburg experience so rewarding. Hearing that the administration has decided to terminate The Gettysburg Review both worries and aggravates me—not only as a former intern of the Review and as a student of literature—but also as a Gettysburgian.”

The Gettysburg Review provided Audia the opportunity to gain experience in the publishing industry, and the knowledge she gained in this internship helped her after graduation from Gettysburg. Audia participated in the Columbia Publishing course at Columbia University, and she credits her time at the Review as helpful in gaining that opportunity.

“Publishing internships are highly competitive and limited,” Audia said. “My experience and mentorship at the Review got me accepted into the Columbia Publishing Course at Columbia University and has prepared me with the skills and knowledge required for a career in the publishing industry.”

Audia then reflected on the administration’s decision and what this loss means for the college.

“The Gettysburg Review is an important tool, foolishly terminated by the College’s administration, in connecting Gettysburg with the nation. The Review is a national literary magazine that offers writers the opportunity to showcase their work. The Review also serves as an opportunity for new writers to debut their talent,” Audia said. “The Gettysburg Review is a place where writers from around the country—and even around the world—have brought their voices to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, and shared stories and taught lessons. That sounds pretty important to creating a consequential education.”

In a message posted to the Gettysburg Review’s website, Drew urged supporters of the Review to contact the administration to express the mission, merits and impact of the publication.

“It was made clear to us that they know little about who we are, what we do, and what our value is, and could be, to the Gettysburg College campus. We encourage you to reach out to the college’s president, Bob Iuliano, and provost, Jamila Bookwalla. Tell them what you think of this decision and the merits of publishing great literature,” Drew said.

Drew gave the contact information for Iuliano (, 717-337-6010) and Bookwala (, 717-337-6820).

Editor’s Note: The author of this article served as an intern for the Gettysburg Review last spring semester.

Author: Laken Franchetti

Laken Franchetti ’24 serves as the Editor-in-Chief for The Gettysburgian. She has previously served as News Editor, Assistant News Editor and as a staff writer for the news and arts and entertainment sections. Laken is an English with a writing concentration and history double major. On-campus, she is the Editor-in-Chief for Her Campus, the Nonfiction Genre Head for The Mercury and a user services assistant at Musselman Library. Laken is also a Lincoln scholar and spent the Fall ’22 semester abroad in London and Lancaster, England. In her free time, Laken is an avid film fan and enjoys reading.

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  1. I literally was just talking up the Gettysburg Review to prospective students at a college fair. What a loss for the college.

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  2. This is such a bad decision. Another example of mismanagement and lack of care from college admin when it comes to the Humanities. Maybe they should actually consult the experts next time before they axe a functional and prestigious limb from this college’s rapidly decomposing body.

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  3. A major loss to the college. I can’t tell you how many students have enjoyed the internships and how many prominent authors have visited the college because of their relationship with the review. So disrespectful to Mark and Lauren, and the magazine as a whole.

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  4. As a Gettysburg alum (Class of 1982), whose career has been devoted to scholarly publishing, I find this decision short-sighted and a blot on the college’s standing, both in terms of its liberal arts programs/majors and its contribution to creative expression.

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  5. Strong case to continue this high quality piece that informs alumni, students , parents and friends ($) of GBURG. This reeks of the same mentality that banished physical education and education degrees and the broad-based alumni board, the newspaper in print, and even the venerable Bullet logo, described by a graduate in NCAA hall of fame as one of the most distinguished college logos in the country. Then, of course, there is the break from the Lutheran Church which founded the first Lutheran college in our nation, with land given by Thaddeus Stevens: Reestablish the historical significance and relationship and tear down in the college church the curtain blocking the magnificent painting of the inclusive welcoming Christ. Bring them all back and the college will realize increased loyalties. What’s next to go, Bullet Points?
    It’s clear there is belt-tightening. What about the huge number of administrators who seem to be falling over one another Five people now serving provost functions? Dozens assigned to multi-cultural roles? So many personnel necessary to counsel psychological needs? Are traditional faculty roles being transgressed?
    Follow the money. Rather than shrinking the student body and selling off capital assets the trustees and the administration should delve deeply into an absolutely contrasting business model. Utilize a three semester system and increase the student body over 3,000. Put all capital assets to work instead of having the many functional and magnificent assets shamefully underutilized. Support the faculty and those who interact with it to enhance its role.

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  6. Wow. I’m from Wisconsin and went to university in Minnesota as a journalism student, and of course, EVERYONE reads / has read / knows about the Review. It’s iconic, and something aspiring — as well as established, well-versed authors, professionals, etc. — look to. What a disgusting, disrespectful joke to to disband a publication that has demonstrated for decades its impact. To not even include the EiC in any conversations surrounding this decision over the course of several years, of which there dozens I’m sure … What a display of utter disrespect. This is not how a college survives, let alone thrives.

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  7. The heavy handed way this was handled by the maladministration only reinforces our decision to stop our yearly donations and cut the College from our will. We initially did so in the wake of the pious witch hunting of generous and committed donor and alumnus Bob Garthwait, Jr. , several years ago by the prior administration. The “changing demographics” rationalization to cease publication is unintentionally hilarious. What do you mean, El Presidente, that the current student body is too illiterate to appreciate literature? The cruelest remark was the “thank yo, now go away” swan song. My wife, a former proud 1977 alumna and past winner of an Outstanding Young Alumni award, is equally appalled.

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  8. I am a poet who has long considered The Gettysburg Review one of the best literary journals in this country. Frankly, I would not know about Gettysburg College were it not for the Review. I have not been published in the Review’s pages, but would be proud to appear there.

    There is great dismay in the nationwide literary community about this decision and a universal feeling that the administration, with very little attempt to understand the importance of the Review or find some way to continue its publication, has significantly tarnished the reputation of Gettysburg College.

    At a time when the study of humanities in this country is increasingly endangered the administration has done a real disservice to those who still care about the written word, presumably including many of your students and faculty. But in purely practical terms, I imagine this will be a serious blow to the reputation, future enrollment and donor support of Gettysburg College. I hope the administration will reconsider this short-sighted decision.

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  9. Worth mentioning in e-mails:

    Iuliano’s salary (2022) = $511,504
    The recent “record-breaking” $10M donation was from an English grad.

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  10. The Gettysburg Review is literally the only reason why thousands of people nationwide have ever even HEARD of this university.
    Incredibly short-sighted and anti-intellectual to axe it, especially since the manner in which it happened showcases the administration’s clear ignorance about the journal’s prestige.

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  11. I graduated from Gettysburg College in 2015. I’m currently pursuing an MFA in Poetry at George Mason University. I can personally attest that as soon as news broke that The Gettysburg Review had been cancelled, the creative writing community on campus was devastated. I certainly have no intention of taking this news sitting down. I’ve sent an email to Bob Iuliano, Jamila Bookwalla, and the Office of the Provost – since there are reports that the emails to Bob Iuliano and Jamilia Bookwalla are being blocked. My mother attended Gettysburg, graduating in ’78 and teaching at the college in ’84. My younger sister graduated in 2020. I have long been proud of being a Gettysburgian. If the college is looking to increase donation funds with this decision, they are sorely mistaken. I have donated in the past and I will not, ever, be donating to Gettysburg College in the future if the decision to cancel The Gettysburg Review stands. I may not be like Daria Lo Presti Wallach, and have the ability to donate $10 million dollars to Gettysburg College. According to an article published by the college, it identifies Wallach as as “ardent and passionate supporter of Gettysburg’s goal to provide A Consequential Education to all students—one that enables students to gain greater insight into themselves, identify their passions, and achieve success in their postgraduate careers” (Jewart).

    Certainly, The Gettysburg Review contributes to students being able to identify their passions and achieve success in their postgraduate careers. This article alone goes to show how many alumni have benefitted from their internships with the review. The Gettysburg Review absolutely allows us all to find greater insights within ourselves – as art is often want to do. As participants in a liberal arts education, we should value that.

    Every cent counts. I will be putting my money towards institutions that value the arts.

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  12. Very disappointed in the Colleges decision. Hope they will reverse. The College seems to have put profit margin over the values of the written word in academics, embracing diverse perspectives, and sustaining the human spirt. These are values I thought Gettysburg College stood for in through a unique liberal arts education. Now I’m far from sure. There is still time to fix this though.

    – Kevin Wright
    B.A. English
    Class of 2020

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  13. College zpuivatuons are do valuable in so many ways. There is far too little opportunities for new writers and ignoring the humanities is a big mistake.
    There has to be a way to support this special part of the esteemed Gettysburg College.
    Personally, I am appalled at this major decision by staff and perhaps your Board.
    Print information is especially i
    portant in this political climate. People do read and need to

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  14. There are other positions that can be eliminated. Please share the emails of the board of trustees so we the parents that pay for this education can share how we really feel about what’s happening at Gettysburg College.

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  15. Wow, what a disrespectful way to deal with people and their work. So this is what the “new experience” is all about for new students. They’ll learn that you need to take the human out the humanities and use empty corporate word shells when you cannot justify your position with facts. Great way to go at a liberal arts College. I would never have heard of this institution if it hadn’t been for their excellent literary magazine.

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    • Absolute silence from the administration? The Board of Trustees have fiduciary and moral responsibility to engage in reconsideration.

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