Maria Riillo is the literary awards fellow at PEN America, where she will be assisting the Literary Awards team with a unique awards season. She previously worked as a virtual intern with human resources at PEN America during the summer of 2020. She is a recent graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, where she studied comparative literature and creative writing, with a focus on dramatic writing. During her time at UPenn, she was an active member of the performing arts scene, specifically theater. She also interned at a large nonprofit theater in Philadelphia, where she assisted the literary and artistic departments, reading scripts and providing feedback on the artistic vision.