Comprehensive Studies Program
1139 Angell Hall
435 S State St
Ann Arbor MI 48109-1003
hours: Mondays, Wednesdays 10 am - 2 pm & by appointment
Education/Degree:B.A. in English [Seattle University]
M.F.A. in Creative Writing—Poetry [University of Michigan]
non-degreed graduate status in Poetry and Creative Nonfiction [Vanderbilt University]
ABD M.P.M. Pastoral Ministry [Institute of Theological Studies, Seattle University]
My favorite thing about teaching in CSP is...
...the opportunity to get to know my students and witness their surprise. Many students come in with a general sense that they “hate” writing, and I appreciate having the opportunity to walk the journey of investigation and adventure with them. Because of the nature of my course and topic (community, identity, growth), we slowly build community throughout the semester, and students become effective collaborators in the learning process.
From my classes, incoming students should expect...
...that I work to demystify the writing experience, and, in my class, there is not much lecture! Students don't just learn about writing: they learn skills that help them grow in their abilities to both write and think critically–skills that will transfer and aid them in other disciplines. They should expect to read a lot; many students really enjoy the readings and use them as models for their own writing. Additionally, students should expect to collaborate with their peers in writing workshops, as studying one another’s writing is empowering. Finally, students learn to write powerfully, because they are writing about issues they care about.
My favorite piece of advice for undergraduate students is...
...the same in writing as in life: we all want to be understood and communicate as clearly as possible. Always have audience awareness, and know that credibility is a virtue. Be patient with yourself; often students have really high expectations but a low sense of accomplishment in writing. If you are willing to embrace the writing process, you'll be fine! All knowledge is self-knowledge in the end; you can discover things about yourself through writing.
In my free time, I enjoy...
...writing my own experimental poetry and prose–I mix up genres and find myself writing 7-page poems, when I’m not reading student work, grading, or tweaking class materials to make them perfect, I also binge-watch sci-fi—each of the Star Trek series and Firefly; I’m waiting for Octavia Butler and N. K. Jemison’s trilogies to be presented in film! I go on long walks and love spending time with my family and our rescue beagle, Barry Allen (yes, named after The Flash!).