Biography Statement:

Me, a woman sitting in an office looking at camera. I am wearing a blue blazer, glasses, a pendant with a black cat peaking from the bottom. I am a fifth year doctoral student in the department of Writing, Rhetoric, & American Cultures. I am an interdisciplinary scholar whose work focuses on self-awareness, listening, mindfulness, and writing pedagogies. My research draws from my home disciplines of Rhetoric and Writing, but also scientific/social scientific disciplines, such as neuroscience and social psychology. My research rests on my appreciation for the creative force of openness, both in self-reflection and interpersonal interactions. 

As a teacher, I draw on my research of mindfulness, listening, and the body to help students develop a sense of openness as they reflect on their beliefs, experiences, and stories. I hope that students can come to see their own pasts (and futures) as fluid, something embodied in the following video:

I integrate multimodality and digital technologies such as video to enhance students’ ability to reflect on their stories in relation to others. To demonstrate the affordances of media as tools for reflection, I often draw on my own multimedia creative non-fiction works. I have also taught students about the creative processes of writing, reflecting, and listening from biological/neurological standpoints, helping them to recognize that our viewpoints are simultaneously mediated by our bodies as well as our social interactions. I have articulated a model for self-reflection and listening that incorporates embodied, neurological viewpoints in my article, “Using Nueorfeedback and Mindfulness Pedagogies to Teach Open Listening,” which received an honorable mention for the 2019 Ellen Nold Award for best article in computers and composition studies.

As a teacher, I encourage students to practice mindful, empathetic listening with everyone they interact with. I am hopeful that students will cary these characteristics in their respective workplaces and communities, while learning to see themselves as global citizens. I believe bringing respect, presence, and curiosity to our everyday interactions helps create communities of care and non-violence. 

During my first master’s degree in Information Media, I was fortunate enough to work as an event planner at Saint Cloud State University’s Women’s Center. Working with the director, assistant director, fellow grad students, and student workers/work study students, we had 150 leaders speak on campus. These speakers were activists, community leaders, non-profit workers, storytellers, and artists. From these awesome individuals, I learned that a great leader listens and collaborates with the communities they are a part of.  I’ve strive embody these qualities as a community-engaged teacher, scholar, and citizen.

Recent activities:

    • I presented “Using Neurofeedback to Discuss and Appreciate Neurodiversity” at the 2019 Computers and Writing Conference as part of a panel, “Brains, Pains, and Shit” (best panel title ever – thank you Computers and Writing organizers!). While at the conference, I received an honorable mention for the Ellen Nold Best Article in Computers and Composition for “Using Neurofeedback Discourses and Mindfulness Pedagogies.”  
    • Had amazing conversations at the Cultural Rhetorics Conference (Fall 2018)!A line of tables contains fabrics and various pieces of artwork.
    • Supporting Gradate Learning Community, Collaborating for Change an ongoing learning community for all Grad TAs or grad students who may teach at some point.

Personal Interests

Erin, stands to the right, holding a camera. She looking at something in a natural area, standing on a rock.
At my favorite park back in Minnesota. There’s an eagle’s nest where you can sometimes see eagles feeding their babies :-).

Nature is very important to me. In Fall, 2018, I had the chance to attend an annual viewing of the migration gathering/”staging” area in Michigan. All I had was a very low-quality pair of binoculars, but after chatting with some fellow bird watchers, I got to watch dozens of sandhill cranes landing (and the moon!) through a telescope. One of my passions in life and in teaching is to show people the beauty of nature, something we need to recognize if we are to make changes to save our environment. I love to have students observe nature in a mindful, engaged way.

I also love music. I sing and dance to express myself, to play, and to relieve stress. I’m learning to rollerskate backwards, which allows me to move to music in a whole new way! I never thought I’d be able to do it (because moving backwards!!) but ‘m pretty good except for when I occasionally lose my footing and look like a duck trying to do tap dance on ice. Whenever I have a chance, I resume learning to play the guitar and the mandolin.

I also love to play with stories and see improv as a way of life. I once took an improv class in Minneapolis with my mother, and it was one of the coolest experiences of my life (and couldn’t beat the company).

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