Featured Graduate Work


Eleven students graduated with distinction Fall 2014 – Spring 2015: Anton Gerth (English Education), Kimberly Daggett (Lit), Karen Montgomery Moore (Lit), Olivia Tracy (Lit), William Winham (Lit), Amanda Casolo (Fiction), Jessica Hill (Creative Nonfiction), Reyila Hadeer (TESL/TEFL), Hsin-Yi (Kenshin) Huang (TESL/TEFL), Angela Sharpe (TESL/TEFL), and Shelly Reed (Rhet/Comp).

Karen Montgomery Moore, Olivia Tracy, Will Winham, and Kimberly Dagget all received distinction on their Master’s projects this semester (pictured left to right).

Karen Montgomery Moore, Olivia Tracy, Will Winham, and Kimberly Dagget all received distinction on their Master’s projects (pictured left to right).

Kylan Rice

Kylan Rice

Three students were awarded the Outstanding Literary Essay Award at the 2015 Awards Ceremony:

1st Place: Kylan Rice, Postbellum Multeity in Clarel: A Geotextual Epic

2nd Place: Olivia Tracy, Rise up through the words: Postcolonial Haitian Uncoverings of Anacoana

3rd Place: Karen Montgomery Moore, Reading the Dead Bodies on Bones

One student was also awarded the Outstanding Graduate Writing Award in Composition, Rhetoric & Literacy: Paul Binkley

The Moscow Arts Commission and Broadsided Press has selected Kristin George Bagdanov‘s poem “Earth Body” as one of the four ASLE-member poems to be broadsided for the “Broadsides on the Bus” program Summer 2015 in Moscow, Idaho. The broadside will be on display on the Moscow buses during the ASLE (Association for the Study of Literature and the Environment) conference, and copies of the poem and accompanying original art will be on display in the Transit Center; the broadsides will also be downloadable. Also, Kristin George Bagdanov’s three poems “Calving,” “When First I heard,” & “Lamb Body” have been awarded 1st place for the Academy of American Poets Prize.

Kristin reading from her thesis at the Master of Fine Arts Poetry and Fiction Reading

Neil FitzPatrick is one of A Public Space’s 2015 Emerging Writer Fellows. With this fellowship, Neil will receive:

  • A mentorship from an established author who has previously contributed to A Public Space;
  • Publication in the magazine;
  • A contributor’s payment of $1,000
  • Free workspace in Public Space’s Brooklyn offices
Neil at AWP 2015

Neil at AWP 2015

Abby Kerstetter has been named as one of the winners of the 2015 AWP INTRO Awards, and her poem “Blackout” will be published in a forthcoming Hayden Ferry’s Review. The Intro Journals Project is a literary competition for the discovery and publication of the best new works by students currently enrolled in AWP member programs. She also received a scholarship from Fishtrap to attend the Summer Fishtrap Gathering of Writers weeklong workshop at Wallowa Lake, Oregon. Read the Humans of Eddy post featuring Abby.

Moriah Kent, a graduate student in the TEFL/TESL program, was awarded a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship grant. She will spend 10 months teaching English at a Bulgarian secondary school. She chose to apply to Bulgaria because she wanted to gain experience in the European educational system and has long admired art and culture of the Balkan region.

Special Events

Moriah Kent and Dongxue Qin, co-presidents of the TEFL/TESL Student Association (TTSA), held several events for the TEFL/TESL Advocacy Week (4/20-4/24, 2015) including a speech from Dr. Diane Larsen-Freeman titled “Language Use and Language Learning Connected.” They were able to raise the money for this event by selling cookbooks.

Nate Barron reading

Nate Barron reading

Abby Kerstetter and Matt Truslow read their poetry and Nate Barron (pictured to the left) read from a micro-essay at the 2015 College of Liberal Arts Spring Faculty/Staff Meeting and Awards Ceremony Associate Dean of CLA and emcee Bruce Ronda arranged the program such that the individual works were effectively showcased and the readings marked logical breaks in the series of awards. Their work was well received by the audience and they made us proud.

At the 2015 Graduate Student Showcase, 16 graduate students from the English Department (listed below) presented their work. The GradShow is a one-day graduate conference at CSU that provides an opportunity for graduate students to showcase their talents, connect with other graduate students, and enjoy the possibility of winning a cash award.

Kristin George Bagdanov
Lara Roberts
Jessica Hill
Abby Kerstetter
Cedar Brant
Paul Binkley
Leslie Davis
Jenna Franklin
Reyila Hadeer
Joni Hayward
Emily LaPadura
Angelina Maio
Karen Montgomery Moore
Courtney Pollard
Olivia Tracy
John Whalen

Two of our students won the Undergraduate Choice Award. In the Creative category, Cedar Brant won second prize ($75) for The Hidden Hinge: Mapping Memory and Myth through Poetry, and in the Research category John Whalen won third prize ($50) for The Utilization of Web-based Resources for Computer Assisted Vocabulary Learning.


Cedar Brant

John Whalen (left): MA English/TEFL/TESL, and Alhassane Ali Drouhamane (right): MA English/TEFL/TESL

John Whalen (left): MA English/TEFL/TESL, and Alhassane Ali Drouhamane (right): MA English/TEFL/TESL

Faculty and Student Collaboration

Pam Coke ()


Dr. Pam Coke and alumnus Ashley Davies recently presented their work at the Spring 2015 Colloquium. The title of their presentation was “What Are You Selling? What Am I Buying? Representing Gender and Sexuality in Adolescents’ and Adult Literature.” Ashley and Pam have been working together since Ashley was crafting her MA thesis in 2010. Five years later, they still share their work with each other, including research into how females and males are (re)presented on the page. Ashley spoke about the ways in which the automobile culture contributes to the rape culture while Pam spoke about her experiencing teaching Wintergirls, a novel by Laurie Halse Anderson that tells the story of several young girls with eating disorders.

Dr. Tatiana Nekrasova-Beker and TEFL/TESL MA student Angela Sharpe also presented their research at the Spring 2015 Colloquium. The title of their presentation was “Teaching Researching, and Creating with Corpora and Corpus Tools.” Tatiana and Angela argued that using corpora and corpus tools can inform the pedagogy of the language classroom by helping instructors develop conscious-raising activities where learners can examine form(s) and meaning(s) in a variety of environments. In addition, Tatiana and Angela demonstrated how instructors can use corpus data as a tool to analyze their pedagogical materials in order to improve implicit and explicit learning opportunities in the classroom.


Travel Scholarships and Opportunities

There were 10 recipients of the Department Travel Funding Spring 2015: Kristen George Bagdanov, Mandi Casolo, Alhassane Ali Drouhamane, Joni Hayward, Moriah Kent, Angelina Maio, Karen Montgomery Moore, Courtney Pollard, Kylan Rice, and John Whalen. Below are some other students who traveled to conferences to present.

Courtney Pollard presented a paper titled “Exploring Alternative Literacies: Reading English Broadside Ballads as Multimedia Texts” at the University of South Florida’s English Graduate Student Conference in Tampa March 27-28, 2015.

Courtney also presented a poster titled “Creating Public Literacy: Reading Text and Image in Broadside Ballads” at the CSU Gradshow on February 25, 2015.

Lastly Courtney was a recipient of the Graduate Student Travel Award this spring and was just recently notified that she is one of the recipients of the Smith-Schamberger Literature Fellowship
for Fall 2015.


Olivia Tracy presented her paper “‘Rise Up Through the Words’: Nature and Power in Haitian Uncoverings of Anacaona” in June at the 2015 ASLE Biennial conference in Moscow, Idaho. She presented as part of the panel “Postcolonial Uncoverings: Caribbean Ecologies.”

Cedar Brant received a scholarship to attend the Bread Loaf Orion Environmental Writers Conference in June 2015.

Five CSU graduate students went to central China Summer 2015 to teach English as a second language at Xi’an Jiaotong University including Kristen Mullen, Kathleen Hamel, Joni Hayward, Tarran Carver, and Jenna Franklin. For four weeks, they taught six hours a day, five days a week. Their primary duty was teaching language skills to Chinese college students, including reading, writing, and verbal communication in English.


Alumnus Justin Hocking’s memoir The Great Floodgates of the Wonderworld won the Oregon Book Award for Creative Nonfiction. The book is also: a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers selection, listed as one of Ten Brilliant Books That Will Grab You from Page One in Kirkus Reviews and The Huffington Post, selected by Hector Tobar as his Favorite Book of 2014 in Publisher’s Weekly and Salon.com, A Library Journal Best Books of 2014 Selection, a Kirkus Reviews Best Books of 2014 Selection, a Hudson’s Books 2014 Booksellers Favorite, a Book Club pick for April 2014 on The Nervous Breakdown, and a #3 Denver Post Bestseller. Read about when Justin came to CSU to read from his book.
Alumnus Justin Hocking accepting his award

Alumnus Justin Hocking accepting his award

Christine Robinson (2011 MA, Rhet/Comp) was recently named recipient of the College of Letters, Arts, and Sciences (LAS) Outstanding Instructor award for 2015. Christine just finished her fourth year as a fulltime instructor at UCCS.

Steven Church (MFA, ‘02), published Ultrasonic, “a collection of linked essays that explore how sound can be used to search for deeper meaning beneath the surface of everyday life.” Read more about Steven in this Alumni Profile.

image by Jocelyn Mettler

image by Jocelyn Mettler

Chloe’ Leisure’s (MFA, Spring 2006) Chapbook, The End of the World Again

Chloe’ Leisure’s (MFA, Spring 2006) Chapbook, The End of the World Again

Chloe’ Leisure (MFA, ’06), 2015 Poet Laureate of Fort Collins, released The End of the World Again, a collection of poems, from Finishing Line Press.

Janelle Adsit MA student (’09) in the English department (Communication Development) has accepted a tenure-line position at Humboldt State University. She will be teaching creative writing workshops there. Humboldt State is the northernmost Cal State school.