When people ask me what I do, I tell them I’m a college writing teacher.
That doesn’t really tell the story, though. As a writer, I’ve been shaped by so much more than my English degree or my educator training. I’ve been writing ever since I can remember, and always knew I would study English in college. I received my B.A. in English at Carleton College in 1994. After that, I ventured into the exciting world of advertising, where I learned how to write all over again in a completely new context. Having nearly ten years of intensive training in business writing was an invaluable experience that showed me how important it is never to stop evolving. I learned that what is expected from an essay in an English classroom is not necessarily what will be required in other contexts.
After nine years in the ad industry, I made a life change and became a high school English teacher in the Boston area. In this position, I had the opportunity to work with students of a wide variety of backgrounds and abilities, including a large number who spoke other languages. Once again, I had to reassess what is important to learn about writing.
In 2006, my husband and I moved to the northern Virginia, where I completed my M.A. in the Teaching of Writing and Literature at George Mason University. Upon graduation, I began teaching Introduction to Composition at Northern Virginia Community College. After four years, I am still teaching composition there, and I have taken on students in the areas of Developmental Writing and Writing for the Web. I teach exclusively online now, having completed many hours of training in the best practices of online learning communities, and I have also redesigned an entire online course for the college that uses all free, open resources from the web.
I love working with people on their writing, because I truly believe it is a skill that can make any life better – regardless of a person’s vocation. If your student needs a little help preparing for the college classroom, or simply succeeding in the high school classroom, give me a shout. I am ready to help!