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Alumni News

Congratulations to Grace Chen (M.A., 2012), who passed her comprehensive exams for the Ph.D. Program at the University of Arizona in Spring 2017 and is now working on her dissertation, currently called “Monstrous Femininities: Elizabethan Influence on Nineteenth-Century Poetry.”  We wish her the best of luck with finishing her dissertation project and completing her Ph.D.!

Congratulations to Rachelle Fitzgerald who was recently offered an official full-time appointment for a Lecturer position in the Analytical Writing Program affiliated with the faculty of John Muir College at the University of California, San Diego, for the 2017-18 academic year. Rachelle is a graduate of CSUSM’s Literature and Writing Studies with her B.A. (2007) and her M.A. (2017). Rachelle also earned her M.A. in Education and a Single Subject English Teaching Credential from Pepperdine University (2009) and an Administrative Credential from University of San Diego (2013). Rachelle taught at Carlsbad High and Valley High (Continuation) here in north county San Diego, and at Bell Gardens High, in south-east Los Angeles. Rachelle is grateful to the faculty and staff of the LTWR department at CSUSM for their many years of dedication and time with students, especially in the graduate program. We wish her the best in her new educational environment!

Congratulations to Erica Duran who just began a tenure track instructor position at MiraCosta College’s Adult High School this Fall 2016! Erica is a graduate of CSUSM Literature and Writing Studies with her B.A. in 2006 and her M.A. in 2008. The topic of her M.A thesis was the examination the cathartic effect that writing Across the River and into the Trees had on the Ernest Hemingway's troubled mental state. After graduation, she taught at two area colleges for over 8 years, including CSUSM teaching GEW and Palomar College teaching basic skills and transfer level English courses. We wish her the best of luck!


Please email any exciting alumni updates to our chair or staff so we can feature new accomplishments on our webpage!


"The Literature and Writing program offered opportunities unique to my areas of focus that I wouldn't have had elsewhere. CSUSM's diverse LTWR faculty encourage inter-departmental collaboration, listening to students' academic and professional goals and providing personal support and development within the program and beyond. Seminar-style classes, hands on teaching training, and rich mentorship from colleagues and professors provided the experience I needed to enter the professional world fully prepared and join the editorial staff of an academic publisher upon graduation."

Amy Salisbury-Werhane, M.A. (2013)
Developmental Editor and Project Manager at Fountainhead Press


"The Literature and Writing Studies graduate program at CSUSM provided me with a comprehensive education, an exceptional community of faculty and graduate students, and an opportunity to grow as a scholar and teacher. CSUSM's MA program readied me for a career in teaching by giving me the opportunity to teach my own courses. Not only did teaching allow for me to put into practice the work of my graduate thesis, but as a teaching assistant, I gained classroom experience that was invaluable when transitioning to the job market within the community." 

Jake Strona, M.A. (2013)
Full-Time Faculty of Letters at Mira Costa Community College


"Earning an M.A. in CSUSM's LTWR department showed me what it meant to be a scholar. The one-on-one mentoring I received from various professors, especially my thesis chair, engendered my desire to teach and work at the college-level. I left the LTWR M.A. program with the skills to build a career in academia."