"In our composition classrooms, how many of us take the time to talk to our students about their everyday writing lives? Do we ask them about the responsibilities they feel (or not) to their writing activities and spaces, and if they feel more authoritative in one community versus another? Do we dismiss these extracurricular practices, many of them rooted in popular culture, because we assume they are playful or even disruptive rather than critical or productive?

If students' extracurricular practices are as important to them as Andrea Lunsford's Stanford Study of Writing suggests, and if these practices are as dynamic as the research of Rebecca Black and other literacy scholars suggest, it seems that inviting students to talk about them within the context of the composition classroom is an essential pedagogical practice. Doing so can help bridge the extracurriculum and curriculum and can serve as a way to help students enhance their rhetorical knowledge and critical thinking skills by, for instance, comparing the social and material conditions across different sites of literacy."

-- Exploring Literacy Sponsorship in the Digital Extracurriculum: How Students' Participation in Fan Fiction Sites Can Inform Composition Pedagogy

Welcome!

I received my B.A. in English from UC Berkeley, my M.A. in English from Boston College, and my Ph.D. from the Joint Program in English and Education at the University of Michigan.

In August 2012, I joined the English department at St. Thomas Aquinas College in Sparkill, New York, where I teach a variety of classes and also direct the Writing Program. I teach all levels of composition, from the introductory composition courses to the more advanced 200-level rhetoric courses. As a generalist in American literature--I specialized in American lit at both Berkeley and Boston College and taught American lit at BC--I teach an American lit survey, American Literature to 1900, and American Autobiography. Additionally, I teach Critical Methods, the gateway course to the English major; a world lit class built around the graphic novel, and various independent studies courses designed with the input of students and their interests.

In 2013, I became Director of Writing. As such, I oversee the two-year Writing Program at STAC and support a faculty of 10-15 instructors. Recently the faculty approved a revision to our general education curriculum, and I am in the process of revising the Writing Program curriculum in order to continue meeting the evolving needs and interests of our students and faculty. I also host discussions with faculty across the College to help them integrate reading and writing into their courses in order to deepen students' knowledge and help them transfer their skills from one rhetorical space to another.

In addition to advising English as well as Criminal Justice majors, I serve on a number of committees and am also co-sponsor of the Gender-Sexuality Alliance group and one of the sponsors for the local Sigma Delta Tau chapter. Recently I was part of a task force that helped establish a B.S. degree through STAC at Sullivan County Correctional Facility. I have been recognized throughout my career for my work in and out of the classroom, most recently with the 2018 Student Government Association's award for Faculty Advisor of the Year.

I present at national conferences on a regular basis. Much of my work focuses on web-based "sponsors of literacy," to borrow Deborah Brandt's term, and in particular fan fiction sites. My current project, tentatively titled (Re)reading, (Re)watching, and (Re)writing The Handmaid's Tale in the Trump Era: Examining Intersections of Fanfic and Activism, is a qualitative research project that asks participants to consider their literacy practices in fan spaces devoted to Margaret Atwood's novel and Hulu's series in the context of activism. I also write about what compels students to plagiarize and how to prevent as well as respond to it as well as explore the specific challenges facing faculty at small liberal arts colleges.

In 2012, Longman/Pearson published the second edition of Writing Places, edited with my co-authors Paula Mathieu, Tim Lindgren, and George Grattan. In the past few years I have presented at several local, regional, and national conferences on a variety of topics, from using "the culture of food" as a unifying theme for composition courses, measuring and addressing students' habits and dispositions regarding plagiarism, contributing to campus conversations about sustainability, and enhancing students' critical writing skills. 

Please browse my bio, CV, and teaching and administrative philosophies, and feel free to contact me!



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