Staff

Tutors

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

DeirdreThe 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.

Alex A.

Alex AI am 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 where I transcribe and encode Whitman’s personal correspondence.  Before coming to Iowa, I worked 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 are at, whether that means brainstorming a possible thesis for that midterm paper, or finishing work on a dissertation chapter.

Amanda

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.

Brady

BradyI’m a PhD student in the English Department and I study environmental literature and work in the digital humanities. I currently teach in the Department of Rhetoric and am particularly interested in rhetoric and composition pedagogy and in multimodal composition. I very much enjoy working with students on their writing, particularly on developing strategies for successful (and stress-free) writing habits. When I’m not on campus I enjoy reading, hiking, biking, kayaking, and backpacking.

 

Brittany

BrittanyI'm a third-year MFA candidate in the Nonfiction Writing Program, working on a long-term project about western Pennsylvania--the place I grew up and where my family still lives. I'm teaching the Art and Craft of Environmental Writing this semester, and I've taught Rhetoric 1030 and 1060 for the last two years. My favorite part about tutoring is helping my students to take a kernel of an idea and develop it into a full fledged argument. I have worked as a peer mentor for new Rhetoric instructors and I received the university's Outstanding Teaching Award from the Council on Teaching. I love getting outside to run, bike, hike, and garden, and I love to cook.

Caitlin

CaitlinI am a PhD candidate in the Department of English, specializing in addiction and recovery in the long British Romantic period (1850-1950). I currently teach in the Rhetoric department, and I'm enjoying my second year of tutoring at the Writing Center. I love meeting students through the center, and getting to learn about their different fields and backgrounds. The writing process can be daunting, but I truly enjoy increasing the confidence of students by providing them with important tools for success. I am a huge fan of pre-writing strategies and the effectiveness of repeated revision. When I’m not focused on writing, I’m hanging out with my cat (Tom-Tom), watching the 49ers, or watching mindless television

Chelsea

ChelseaI am a native Iowan, avid cyclist, and lover of all things literary.  I am currently writing a dissertation that focuses on women's documentary poetry from 1938-2015 in the US. After a tutoring session, I hope you'll walk out the door feeling organized, understanding the assignment, excited about critical thinking, and focused on expressing your ideas with care. I teach Interpretation of Literature and previously taught Rhetoric here at UIowa. I love writing-centered tutoring so much that I tutor in Kirkwood's Iowa City writing center, too. In a rare free moment, you will find me on a trail riding my recumbent tricycle, Irwin, listening to the latest crime-narrative podcast, or curled up with a big fantasy novel and my Maine Coon cat, Penny.

Claudia

I’m a PhD student in the College of Education with a M.Sc. in Teaching and Learning Foreign Languages. I have worked with both English and Spanish second language learners on their writing processes in different areas. I also used to teach English Language Literature to Spanish speakers to help them improve their English language skills. I love helping people to overcome their fears about writing and to express themselves, because I believe we all have something interesting to say. My areas of interest are education, foreign and second language acquisition, Spanish as a second and foreign language, literacy, literature, and writing. I enjoy reading, blogging, and watching soccer.

Daniel

DanielI'm a second-year MFA candidate in the Nonfiction Writing Program. I've previously taught Rhetoric and mentored first year Rhetoric instructors, but I'm spending this semester working exclusively in the Writing Center and for the Iowa Digital Engagement & Learning (IDEAL) Initiative.  As a student, I'm writing a creative, book-length project about the Midwest in the context of America's culture wars. That being said, I'm a Midwesterner--born and raised--though I've lived and worked on both coasts in television and film. My entertainment background comes out in my creative work, work for IDEAL, and in my tutoring style. In the Writing Center, my students and I work together to craft prose that is clear, sophisticated, and engaging.

Danielle

I’m a PhD candidate in the Department of English, and I study poetry, queer theory, and affect. I currently teach Interpretation of Literature, and I was a Rhetoric instructor before that, so I’m very familiar with those courses and the kind of writing they entail. I also enjoy helping students write and edit professional documents—resumes, personal statements, cover letters, etc. I have a particular interest in helping my students find ways to cope with writing anxiety, since I know from personal experience just how difficult that can be. In my spare time, I love to watch hockey, listen to and play music, and hang out with friends.

David

DavidI’m a lecturer in the Rhetoric Department and have worked in the Writing Center since the Spring 2017 semester. When I’m not thinking about teaching, I’m thinking about writing. In this sense, tutoring in the Writing Center is perfect for me. My background is in American literature—I wrote my PhD dissertation on the work of Philip Roth—but these days my focus is much more on pedagogy and the importance of crucial academic skills like writing, critical reading, and critical thinking. Outside of work, I enjoy spending time with my wife and two daughters, cooking, and talking about how great Iowa City is (it’s great, right?).

Dina

DinaI am a third-year graduate student in the Nonfiction Writing Program, working on a memoir about a house fire that disfigured and disabled me when I was a teenager. I teach The Art and Craft of Personal Writing as well as tutoring and conducting the weekly creative writing workshop in the Writing Center this semester. For two years I taught Rhetoric with an emphasis on arguing from personal experience and through the lens of my background in musical and theater performance. I also worked as a peer mentor for newly appointed rhetoric instructors and I received an Outstanding Teaching Award from the UI Council on Teaching. Depending on the weather, you may find me dancing down a sidewalk, reading in a diner, or philosophizing near a playground. Tell me all about your cat.

Eleanor

EleanorI am a non-degree graduate student with a B.A. in German from Grinnell College and an M.A. in Literary Translation Studies from the University of Rochester. I am currently an intern with the Writing Center, and I am interested in building a career in teaching college writing. I love grammar and usage, and I really enjoy helping students structure their arguments to have the greatest impact.  I also like to help students see writing as a process that they can have power over. In my free time, I can usually be found with my cat, Lola

Fernando

FernandoI’m a Lecturer in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese here at Iowa and I enjoy working with students on strategies to improve their writing in Spanish, both in creative and academic texts. My areas of interest include sociolinguistics, culture studies, applied linguistics and second language acquisition. At Iowa, I teach a variety of courses (Elementary and Intermediate Spanish, Spanish Language Skills: Writing, Spanish Language Skills: Speaking, Spanish in the U.S., Translation workshop English-Spanish) in different platforms (face-to-face, online, hybrid, virtual classroom). When I’m not working I like traveling, hiking, playing tennis, reading, and watching sports and movies.

Ivan

IvanI am a Lecturer in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at UIOWA. What I love the most about tutoring is being able to make a difference in a student’s intellectual, academic and creative life. I enjoy listening and communicating with students from different backgrounds. My favorite writing genres are fiction, comedy and drama, but I also love to write, read and discuss literary and scientific academic essays. I graduated from the MFA in Spanish Creative Writing at UIOWA. Since then I have been teaching Writing, among other courses, here in Iowa. In my free time I love to read, swim and enjoy nature.

Jaclyn

JaclynI am a PhD candidate in the Department of English, and I study literature and periodicals during the U.S. Civil War and Reconstruction Era. I earned a B.A. in Literature and Political Science from Mercer University. At the University of Iowa, I teach Interpretation of Literature, and I taught Rhetoric for two years. My favorite part of working in the Writing Center is helping students plan their writing assignments. The initial generation of ideas at the beginning of a project is exciting to me. When I’m not teaching, tutoring, or writing, I’m hanging out with my cat, reading, or watching Gilmore Girls.

Jane

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.

 

Justin

JustinI am a Lecturer in the Department of Rhetoric and I have an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. My creative interests have tended toward experimental poetry, poetics, cinema, and music, though I do like to read novels and the occasional pulp Western. I’m also a big baseball fan. I’m tutoring in the Writing Center because I enjoy collaboration, especially as relates to revision; I believe students and instructors thrive during the kind of one-on-one, conversational sessions the Writing Center facilitates.

 

Krista

KristaMy favorite part of working with students is watching them develop their skills as logical thinkers and helping facilitate their growth. From my experience, a student’s progress toward becoming independent intellectual thinkers becomes most evident in the way they structure their writing. I was born and raised in St. Paul, Minnesota. Currently, I’m a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Biology at the University of Iowa focusing on plant development. I teach biology labs for my home department and backpacking and camping classes for the Lifetime Leisure Skills Program. When I’m not my lab you can find me building something out of wood, cooking in the kitchen, or outside reading a good book - lately I’ve been a sucker for sci fi.

Laura

LauraI am a doctoral candidate in English specializing in nineteenth-century British literature. I've had the opportunity of teaching in the Department of Rhetoric for the last two years and look forward to taking on a new role as a tutor in the Writing Center this spring. Though I enjoy working with students on all parts of the writing process, my favorite piece--in my own writing and with others--is revising and organizing a drafted essay. I'm a big believer in multiple drafts and I think we can learn a lot from something we've already written. When I'm not writing or reading, I like to hike with my family in the mountains of the Pacific Northwest, cross stitch at home with my cat Gustaf, and attend any ballet that comes to Hancher.

Libby

LibbyI’m a masters student in the School of Library and Information Science pursuing a certificate in the UI Center for the Book, and have an MFA and MA in creative writing. I am interested in writing pedagogy and creative nonfiction. I love, when tutoring, helping students to work out the most succinct way of saying what they are trying to say. When home I enjoy Netflix binges and dog snuggles. 

 

Lindsey

LindseyI’m an ESL teacher here at the University of Iowa, and I dabble in teaching rhetoric as well.  I’ve been working in the Law Writing Center since 2014, and I’m looking forward to reading a greater variety of (non-legalese) student work this semester!  My favorite part about helping students with their writing is asking questions. When I’m not reading student papers, I’m out hunting or fishing with my pup, Skipjack, tending my bees, making up recipes (some better than others), or cuddling my embarrassingly large and entirely accidental collection of cats.  

Lucy

LucyI am a third-year graduate student in the Nonfiction Writing Program and am working on a book-length project about treasure hunting and metal detecting. I love reading old, odd books that I find in used bookstores. In my spare time, I love to bike, cook, meditate, and listen to podcasts.

 

 

Lydia

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.

Matt H.

Matt H.I am a PhD student in the English Department and I study twentieth-century American literature, with an emphasis on queer authors and literary celebrity. I also teach in the Department of Rhetoric. This is my first semester as a tutor in the Writing Center, and I hope to work with students to develop strategies that will make the writing process seem a little less daunting. I look forward to helping students achieve clarity in their writing, as well as assisting them as they hone in on their own unique, “writerly” voice. When I am not busy attending to the rigors of grad school, I like to watch trashy reality television and eat cupcakes.

Matt M.

MattIn addition to working at the Writing Center, I teach classes as a lecturer in the Rhetoric Department. I have a BA in English and Professional Writing, an MFA in Creative Writing, and a PhD in English and Comparative Literature. What I most enjoy about meeting one-on-one with students in this setting is everything I learn from the variety of disciplines I see represented in the papers I read. During the past few years, I have had a growing interest in teaching English language and literature to speakers of other languages and spent last academic year teaching at an agricultural college in Wuhan, China. In my spare time, I enjoy reading and writing poetry as well as studying Mandarin. 

Megan

MeganIn addition to tutoring in the Writing Center, I teach General Education Rhetoric and graduate courses in pedagogy and scholarly writing in the Rhetoric Department. I also help run the Honors Writing Fellows Program, an undergraduate peer-tutoring program for writers. And I love tinkering with my own writing––mostly essays and poetry––as well as working with other writers on their prose and verse. When I’m not writing, reading, or teaching, I’m probably riding my bike, crafting, or dreaming of my bucket-list goal of going into outer space.

Sophie

SophieI love working in the Writing Center because I am passionate about helping people recognize the power of their own writing, even if—especially if!—they don’t see themselves as “good writers.” Watching someone’s self-confidence grow is my greatest joy as a teacher, and working in the Writing Center lets me experience those moments continuously throughout the semester. When I’m not tutoring, I am studying for an MA in American Studies. My research focuses on collective memory, and I’m especially interested in projects that combine prose, poetry, translation, visual art, and bookmaking. Outside of school, my primary goal in life is to pet as many dogs as possible.

Taney

TaneyI'm a Master's candidate with the Nonfiction Writing Program, now into my third and final year. This next year I plan on finishing my creative thesis about my experiences growing up in the Mormon church, and then I will go on to teach -- though who knows where. I've written essays about a wide variety of subjects, including American Sign Language, antique consignment stores, video game tournaments, and the corporatization of the dying process. I'm a native Midwesterner, a husband, a father of three small kids, and an avid amateur photographer (though I hate taking pictures of myself).

UNDERGRADUATE STAFF

Alex L.

Alex LI am currently a senior studying both English and Journalism & Mass Communications with plans to earn a Master’s degree in secondary education. Over the past three years I’ve gotten the chance to work one on one with my peers as a Writing Fellow and peer mentor for the Honors program. I’m passionate about anything that has to do with reading literature, writing about literature, or creating it. I’ve had experience writing in an array of classes, and I always welcome the chance to delve into new and exciting subjects. I love getting the opportunity to work with fellow writers across campus and be a part of their process—it’s one of the most rewarding parts of being a peer tutor at Iowa! 

Alyssa

AlyssaHello! I am currently a senior studying Japanese and Foreign Language Education. In the future, I hope to add on an ESL endorsement. I may not be an English major, but that doesn't mean I don't enjoy writing! I love reading and working with all sorts of different essays and writers, from students preparing personal statements to literary analysis papers. My favorite part about tutoring is seeing the moment when students have their "Aha!" moment, and their thoughts are put onto paper. When I'm not in the writing center or in class, I'm usually playing video games, baking, hanging out with friends, or watching anime.

Ashley

Ashley CI'm a Senior in International Studies, focusing on Post-Colonial/Diasporic Studies and East Asian Studies, with a minor in Anthropology and a Writing Certificate. My friend once described me as a "whirlwind of constant evolution" and that sounds about right; I have a lot of interests and always try to find ways to learn about them more and mash them together. That being said, I've discovered writing as a wonderful way to mix my interests! I believe writing is a crucial method of expression and I enjoy encouraging and talking over parts of the writing process with peers. In my spare time, I listen to whatever Spotify recommends me or brainstorm ideas for new creative projects.  

Claire

ClaireI am a senior studying French and Arabic with a minor in translation, and this year I'll be serving on the board of both the Translate Iowa Project and Bridges International. Before settling on French I changed my major about six times, so I'm incessantly curious and excited to learn from you about your area of study while we work together on your writing. When I'm not in school or working, you might find me working my way through the mound of books that I keep buying faster than I can read them, probably while listening to "Hamilton" and drinking vats of coffee.

Cindy

CindyI am a senior studying History and Journalism & Mass Communication at the university. Besides working at the Writing Center, I am also a Writing Fellow and Research and Communication Intern at the International Writing Program. As a Spanish heritage speaker, I am particularly interested in literature that serves as an avenue toward cultural exchange, but love reading just about everything I can get my hands on. I look forward to working with fellow students as they go through the messy but ultimately rewarding writing process. In my free time, I like to catch up on politics, find new places to eat, and listen to new music.

Dani

DaniI am a junior physics and astronomy double major with a minor in mathematics. However, I am an avid writer and reader of various genres. I have taken many creative writing workshops and have been a writing fellow for courses focusing on scientific engagement and dramatic literature/staging. I enjoy discussing literature from any subject, such as science, history, and sociology. I think that being able to sit down and talk about writing with another person is the best way to think about how to edit an essay at any stage. Discussion is the best tool for any kind of revision. When I'm not researching space or writing stories, I am composing music or looking for new recipes to cook and bake. 

Girindra

GirindraI am a senior majoring in English, with a dual minor in French and philosophy. When I'm not working or in class, I'm probably watching Curb Your Enthusiasm or reading critical theory with my cat Tonx. I enjoy working as a writing tutor and writing fellow because of the ways in which the processes of revision and review further one's abilities as a writer and as a thinker. My first experience with the Writing Center came during my first semester at Iowa, and as someone who has been on both sides of the tutor-writer relationshipm I can speak directly to its efficacy. My philosophy as a tutor is largely defined by the idea that writing is, in effect, an externalized version of thinking. If the writer and I can engage in a conversation about the logic of their text, I am hopeful that they will leave with the tools to bring their work to the next level. 

Nick

NickI am a junior majoring in English, History, and Mathematics. I have been a writing fellow since 2016 and worked in the Writing Center since 2017. I am also an officer with the UI's English Society, which promotes literature and book-related events on campus. One reason I love tutoring is the opportunity to learn about subjects outside my area of study; during my time as a tutor, I have gained at least as much knowledge as I've shared, and probably more. I am passionate about literature (especially American and Russian literature), education, and politics. In my free time I love reading, hiking, playfully arguing about the day's news, and watching unhealthy amounts of the X-Files. You can usually find me haunting the hallways of the English Philosophy Building, or holed up in one of Iowa City's many cafes. 

Wenqi

WenqiI’m currently a senior studying linguistics with a TESL focus. Having a passion for languages and literature, I’m also studying Italian, Latin and literature translation. As a native Chinese speaker, I’m aware of the difficulties of writing in a second language and appreciate the chance to work with international students. I enjoy discussing all sorts of literature with writers speaking different languages and being inspired by their writings as well as their languages.