Carol Severino, Director

My favorite part of tutoring is getting to know the students and their areas of interest. I love it when students are enthusiastic about their writing topics and teach me about them. As a writing center director, my goals are to reach more student and community populations with our services, or at least with the message about the value of planning and revision in the writing process. I like to keep up with my twin sons and my toddler granddaughter, learn new languages, play the drums, swim and walk by the lake with my dog, and in the summer, cook what I harvest from my garden. I research second language writing in the Writing Center, especially vocabulary issues. I like to write creatively in English and Spanish, both fiction and nonfiction.

Deirdre Egan, Assistant Director

Deirdre EganThe Writing Center is a great place to work. It’s busy, friendly and lively, with good conversation and (usually) good coffee. My job is to manage the day to day operations of the Writing Center and to give feedback on work sent to us through our online system. I was born and raised in Ireland and have an electic but occasionally useful background in the health sciences, political science and feminist theory. When I’m not here, I’m studying the bizarre behaviors of American teenagers and being informed by the four who live in my house about their peculiar belief systems. I also write (slowly), teach (once in a while) and read whenever I can.


AlexI’m a PhD candidate in the Department of English where I study nineteenth- and twentieth-century American literature. I also work as a research assistant in The Walt Whitman Archive and independently pursue creative writing opportunities, such as poetry, film, and short fiction.  Before coming to Iowa, I worked as an adjunct professor at Marquette University where I taught courses in rhetoric and composition.  While I enjoy the classroom setting, the Writing Center is an invaluable resource because it allows writers and tutors a unique opportunity to work closely with one another.  I look forward to helping students no matter what stage of the writing process they’re in—whether that means brainstorming a possible thesis for a ten page paper, or finishing work on a dissertation chapter.


My favorite thing about tutoring is the variety of people and ideas that I encounter daily: what a delicious opportunity! I love collaborating on the puzzle of how to best get ideas on the page, especially with students who come from a linguistic tradition (whether another register, dialect, or language) that falls outside the conventions of this Academic English thingy we’re all attempting to emulate. I try to show that we have the option to preserve aspects of our non-academic selves in our writing and, when thoughtfully done, it can enrich our work and push—even if only a smidgen—at the boundaries of scholarly discourse. When I’m not rattling the bars of academia, I am at home, spoiling my cats, learning Portuguese, and discussing Yu-Gi-Oh! with my ten- year-old son.


I teach Interpretation of Literature and I tutor in the Writing Center as I complete my PhD in English. My research interrogates 20th-21st century conceptual and documentary poetics through a feminist lens. In my spare time, I write children's stories, hike, and try not to burn down my kitchen.




I’m a PhD student in the College of Education. I love working at the UI Writing Center because, although I have worked with English and Spanish second language learners on their writing processes in different areas, I’m still learning a lot about the fascinating world of tutoring (and enjoying it!). I have an M.Sc. in Teaching and Learning Foreign Languages, and I used to teach English Language Literature to Spanish speakers. I love helping people to overcome their fears about writing and to express themselves, because I believe we all have something interesting to say. I enjoy reading, learning new things, blogging, and watching soccer.


I’m a PhD candidate in the Department of English, and I study poetry, queer theory, and affect. I have previously taught Rhetoric and been a TA for Introduction to the English Major. I know how difficult writing can be, and I like to help my tutees find ways to cope with writing anxiety. I also particularly enjoy helping students improve the structure and organization of their papers. In my spare time, I watch hockey, listen to and play music, and read a wide array of online journalism.



I am a Rhetoric instructor and M.F.A. student in the Nonfiction Writing Program who specializes in narrative, arts criticism, travel writing, and life writing. A graduate of the Missouri School of Journalism, I have worked as a writer and editor at various magazines. I think what I love about the Writing Center is what I love about newsrooms: the chance to help a diverse range of writers take their writing and thinking to a higher level.   



HeidiI am a doctoral candidate in English specializing in Victorian poetry. I've worked as an English teacher in a public high school and taught Rhetoric at the University of Iowa. I currently teach Interpretation of Literature and tutor in the Writing Center. My favorite part about working in the Writing Center is helping students revise. I liken the process of revision to artistic production, where artists often embrace struggle and difficulty as a means toward growth. My approach to tutoring allows students to write from a place of uncertainty, to dwell in the messiness of thinking, and to develop a self-imposed discipline when writing. When I am not reading, writing, or teaching, I enjoy spending time with my family, walking my dog, gardening, experimenting with new vegan dishes, and flying stunt kites.


I am a graduate student in the department of Epidemiology through the College of Public Health, with a focus in depression and mental health. Although I specialize in scientific and technical writing, I love working with students of all disciplines to help them shape their ideas into a clear, organized, and well-developed finished product. In my spare time I like to work in my garden, play the cello, and go on adventures with my son and daughter.



I'm an M.F.A. student in the Nonfiction Writing Program and I teach in the Rhetoric department. My professional background is in journalism, but I love working with writers of all stripes. What I love about my work at the Writing Center is the opportunity to sit down one-on-one with a student and ask the questions and offer the guidance that will allow whatever they're working on — a cover letter, research paper, reading response, reported article, short story, essay, or really anything — to really shine.



JohnI’m a doctoral candidate in the English Department where I study continental philosophy and transatlantic (post)modernisms. In addition to my work in the writing center, I also teach Rhetoric. Before attending the University of Iowa, I worked as an adjunct instructor at Western Illinois University where I taught courses in basic, first-year, and advanced composition. Although teaching rhetoric absolutely rocks and I enjoy the classroom setting, the Writing Center provides unique opportunities for students to receive individualized writing instruction and for staff to encounter writing projects from diverse academic disciplines. I look forward to my weekly meetings with students and reading the work submitted to our online feedback system.


KeryI’m an Master's student in the School of Library and Information Science. I hold a Master’s degree in historical musicology and undergraduate degrees in Music and English from the University of Iowa. I spent the last two years in the musicology PhD program at McGill University, and Montréal’s poutine and French patisseries have changed me forever. My research interests include children’s music and literature, American history, birdsong, and conservation history. Helping people with their writing is one of the most challenging and rewarding things I do, and I love being part of the Writing Center team.  


LauraI’m a graduate of the Writers’ Workshop and a current MFA Candidate in Literary Translation, and I’ve taught creative writing and translation at the University of Iowa. I love working on issues of clarity – in both thought and language – and helping writers bring out their works' potential! I have particular interest and experience in guiding students through high-school-to-college writing transitions, working with writers on longer projects like graduate theses/dissertations/job papers, application essays (undergraduate and graduate), business writing (undergraduate and graduate), and, of course, creative writing at the undergraduate and graduate levels. If you’d like to explore your creative side, come check out the creative writing group I facilitate on Fridays from 2-4 PM in 110 EPB!


I like spending time with writers in the Writing Center, hearing their thoughts and plans for a paper. I like seeing writers’ faces when I ask questions that they haven't yet considered. I guess I like seeing how writers rethink and re-imagine their work. Re-seeing is revision. Life is a revision, too. After working as a nurse for eleven years, I earned a BA in English and Comm Studies, worked as a medical researcher, and then earned a PhD in literacy studies. I have taught Rhetoric and similar courses at three universities, and I currently teach Rhetoric to pre-healthcare and health science students here at Iowa. I am co-author of the book The Lost Art of Retinal Drawing, which combines medicine and art. I am currently working on a project that looks at human nature as it relates to genealogy. In my spare time, I play with my grandson and two cats.


LydiaI am a PhD candidate in the Department of English, specializing in 19th century British literature and Disability Studies. I have taught Rhetoric and currently tutor in the Writing Center. I love tutoring and getting to know and work with a variety of students from different fields and backgrounds. I know the writing experience can be stressful and I value helping students develop their confidence in themselves as writers. Revising is one of my favorite parts of my own writing process and I enjoy developing and working through that process with students, helping them figure out how they can better structure and organize their work. When I’m not tutoring, studying, or working on my own writing, I love to read, travel home to Montana, and spend time outside, either cross country skiing in winter or hiking in summer.


TheresaI'm an M.F.A. student in the Playwrights Workshop, part of the Theatre Department, where I teach Playwriting I. Before I came to graduate school, I spent five years working as a publicist in book publishing -- so I've worked with writers of all stripes! In my free time I like reading for fun, which is rare these days; walking in Hickory Hill Park; and watching too much television.




ZachIn both my teaching and my tutoring at the Writing Center, I like to foreground the importance of writing as a skill that every student needs, regardless of major or career path. It's always rewarding to see a student internalize the process of writing, as I see them grow over the course of a semester or more. The best writing advice I was ever given comes from an advisor who told me, "Writing is 90% rewriting," and there's no better place to do that than Iowa's Writing Center. In addition to my work at the Writing Center, I teach Interpretation of Literature (including courses on narrative time and the superhero genre), and my dissertation focuses on an emerging genre of contemporary American literature which uses superhero comics to engage with issues of identity and ethics




Chelsea W.I am a fourth-year undergrad studying English, French, and Gender/Women's/Sexuality Studies. In addition to editing, which I hope to pursue in the future, I have a passion for creative writing. I try to find creative ways to express myself in any piece of writing writing – from literature essays to research papers – and I have enjoyed exploring that through tutoring. When I'm not working in the Writing Center or scribbling in notebooks at Java House, you can find me on stage at the Theatre Building or on my couch watching Netflix.


EmilyI’m a senior majoring in journalism with minors in French and English. I’m in my third semester as a Writing Fellow and have worked with Psychology of Gender and Interpretation of Lit. This semester, I’m working with Human Rights Advocacy. I want to go into book publishing and editing because I believe in the power of books and their importance in our society, whether they’re in a physical form or e-books. In my free time, I like to watch TV shows on Netflix, eat far too much chocolate and ice cream for my own good, participate in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), and dance competitively with Iowa’s ballroom dancing team, Hawkeye Ballroom


EmmanuellaI am an undergraduate senior, majoring in Art History with a minor in Human Relations and on track for the Writing Certificate. I love working with people, and I think that collaborating with others to help further their sense of expression as well as your own is a wonderful thing. My areas of “expertise” are art history papers and well as any descriptive academic writing, however I am more than happy to brainstorm ideas and help refine any academic or creative piece of work. I’m also very fond of reading, so book recommendations are always appreciated. 

Laura W.

I’m a third-year undergraduate studying English, Creative Writing, and Chinese. I also work as a Writing Fellow and have fallen in love with peer tutoring. It has helped me grow as a reader and writer, but most importantly, it has given me a great sense of purpose when I can help straighten out a knotty sentence or develop a more organized essay. When I’m not doing something writing-related, you can probably find me watching Netflix, taking a nap, or pretending that I know how to cook.



MichaelI'm studying Linguistics and French here at Iowa. I’m an Iowa City native with a long term goal of teaching ESL, though I love working with both native and nonnative English speakers. I'm happy to help with any sort of writing, but I’m most comfortable with persuasive essays. In my free time I like to play just about any sport, play cards, and do just about anything outside. My favorite TV show is Parks and Recreation.



NatalieI am a junior majoring in English and International Studies.  I've been peer tutoring ever since I was in high school, and I love connecting with people. Everyone can benefit from having a second pair of eyes to read a paper, or someone to help with brainstorming. I've taken science classes, history classes, creative writing classes, literature classes, and international studies classes. Come to me with any assignment and I will do my best to help you leave the writing center more confident than when you came in.



RobI am an undergraduate student in my fourth year studying Linguistics. When I work with students who come from a non-native English background, I come across many manipulations of language which fascinate me through the presence of an interlanguage between a writer's first language and English. Together, the student and I can work together to help them reach their academic goals. Outside of the Writing Center, I enjoy spending my time playing piano in the extraordinary stylings of Arnold Bax and Jean Sibelius.