Curriculum Vitae

CURRENT EMPLOYMENT

Assistant Professor (Teaching) of Writing, Writing Program, University of Southern California
2013 – Present
Teach courses in writing aimed to develop students’ ability to think critically, read actively, and communicate ideas thoughtfully and effectively while adhering to the forms and conventions of the academic discourse community. Courses taught: WRIT 140: HIST 265 affiliation (Fall 2013, Spring 2014); WRIT 150, Thematic Approaches: Issues in Contemporary Economics (course design, Summer 2014, Summer 2015; course taught Fall 2014, Spring 2015, Fall 2015, Spring 2016; WRIT 150, Thematic Approaches: Identity and Diversity in American Contexts (Fall 2016, Spring 2017); AMST 392, Undergraduate Research Methods (Spring 2017); WRIT 150, Thematic Approaches: Education and Human Development (Fall 2017); Writing Center Consultant (Fall 2017).

EDUCATION

MFA, English, Creative Writing, 2008
University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
The Voice and Arms of God, a novella and stories

BA, Humanities, emphasis in philosophy, 2000
Biola University, La Mirada, CA

TEACHING EXPERIENCE

Director of Curriculum, WeaveWriter
2014-2017
Build and improve curriculum for WeaveWriter, to help writers love writing (again), by inspiring and empowering new and experienced writers to write every day, tell better stories, and make every word count—through the power of habit.

Teacher of English, Crenshaw Arts/Tech Charter High (CATCH)
2012-2013
Teach English 10, English 11 AP Language & Composition, English 12, Digital Journalism.

Instructor of English, Cerritos College
2012-2013
Teach courses in Composition.

Instructor of English, Orange Coast College
2012
Teach courses in Composition.

Assistant Professor of Writing and Rhetoric, Writing Program Director, Torrey Honors Institute, Biola University
2008-2011
Torrey is an undergraduate honors program taught in the Socratic style, whose curriculum is made up of the great books of the Western Canon. I was one of 14 full-time faculty specializing in different disciplines, all who teach across the curriculum and who mentor students. As Writing Program Director, I oversaw Torrey’s writing program, and my job included teaching students in weekly writing seminars and in one-on-one tutoring; training faculty regularly in writing pedagogy; hiring, training, and supervising teaching assistants; providing guidance for and evaluating special student writing projects; articulating our writing program’s vision and maintaining its standards; and developing innovative curriculum for a department whose standards of excellence are very high.

Graduate Teaching Assistant, English Department, University of Pittsburgh
2006-2008
Teacher of Record for Intro to FictionIntro to Creative Writing, and Seminar in Composition. In the fall of 2006, I was cited by David Bartholomae for having received the highest student evaluations of any Graduate Teaching Assistant or Teaching Fellow.

Teacher of English and Philosophy, Lynwood High School, Lynwood, CA
2002-2005
I taught British Literature and World Literature to 12th and 10th grades, respectively, and Intro to Philosophy to upperclassmen.

Teacher of English, Bishop Montgomery High School, Torrance, CA
2000-2001
I taught American Literature and Basic English to 11th and 9th grades, respectively.

AWARDS, GRANTS, HONORS

EIDOS Christian Center Grant
2008-Present
Awards ranging from $8,700 to $20,000, annually, that support my writing and speaking.

Master Teacher, Writing Program, USC, named by the Mentoring Committee for teaching excellence
2015-2017

Finalist, Very Short Fiction Contest, Glimmer Train
2010
For short story, “Is Still”

Honorable Mention, Family Matters Fiction Contest, Glimmer Train
2009
For short story, “Mister, Are You Still Very Sad?”

Winner of the Turow-Kinder Award in Fiction
2008
Novelist Chuck Rosenthal selected an excerpt from my novella, The Voice and Arms of God, as the best work of fiction produced by a University of Pittsburgh graduate student over the course of the 2007-2008 academic year.

Nominated for Best New Amerian Voices 2010 Anthology
2008
Nominated by Chuck Kinder for inclusion in the Best New American Voices 2010 anthology, for the opening chapters of my novella, The Voice and Arms of God.

Student Honoree, Convocation, University of Pittsburgh
2006-2008

K. Leroy Irvis Summer Research Fellowship, University of Pittsburgh
2006, 2007
Awarded $8,200 and $8,700 for the summers of 2006 and 2007, respectively, to research my novel-in-progress, The Voice and Arms of God. Research included primary research with several 12-step recovery groups, joining meetings, interviewing members, doing the steps myself; and traveling to Guayaquil, Ecuador, where a great deal of the novel is set.

K. Leroy Irvis Fellowship, University of Pittsburgh
2005-2006
Full tuition remission, $17,000 stipend.

PUBLICATIONS

“Christian Art: Devoted to Reality.” ConvergeMagazine.com 16 July 2012. Creative Nonfiction.

“The Power of Mothers.” Catholic Digest. Nonfiction. May 2012. Creative Nonfiction

“On Storytelling.” Billtown Blue Lit. 14 December 2011. Creative Nonfiction.

Is Still.” Twelve Stories, 7 November 2011. Short Fiction.

“Far Beneath.” Pittsburgh Noir. Akashic Books, June 2011. Ed. Kathleen George. Short Fiction.

Mister, Are You Still Very Sad?” Acentos Review, August 2010. Short fiction.

Reflections on Mother’s Day” (contributor). www.RelevantMagazine.com. Ed. John Pattison. Creative Nonfiction.

“Dad Said Don.” Best of Relief Volume 1. Ed. Kimberly M. Culbertson, et al. Crystal Lake, IL: ccPublishing NFP, 2007. 115 – 127. Short Fiction.

“Dad Said Don.” The Ankeny Briefcase. Ed. Jordan Green, et al. Crystal Lake, IL: ccPublishing NFP, 2006. 85–102. Short Fiction.

“Parable.” The Ankeny Briefcase. Ed. Jordan Green, et al. Crystal Lake, IL: ccPublishing NFP, 2006.  17–26. Short Fiction.

ACADEMIC SERVICE

Diversity Liaison, Writing Program, USC, appointed by Writing Program Director to represent to the rest of the university the Writing Program’s postures, actions, and progress concerning diversity issues
2017-2018

Diversity Committee, Cofounder, Co-chair, Writing Program, USC, the Diversity Committee’s purpose is to discover new strategies and implement existing strategies aimed to diversify the Writing Program’s faculty through hiring, pedagogy, professional development, and retention of faculty who belong to historically marginalized groups.
2016-2018

Personnel Committee, Writing Program, USC, elected by colleagues, the Personnel Committee advises the Writing Director on matters having to do with faculty personnel and policy, including granting faculty requests for funding, faculty promotion files, appointing committee chairs throughout the department, hiring new faculty, transitioning department leadership, the Writing Center, etc.
2016-2018

Merit Review Committee, Writing Program, USC, elected by colleagues, the Merit Review Committee reviews and evaluates Writing Program faculty Merit Review files
2015, 2017

Professor of English, Summer Academy, South Central Scholars, USC, curriculum development, coordinating and directing staff of four Teaching Assistants, giving daily lectures, facilitating discussion seminars, evaluating and giving detailed feedback on student work, leading writing workshops, mentoring students as they prepare for their final year in high school and college applications
2015, 2017

Writing “Bootcamp” Tutor, Mellon Mays Fellows Professional Network, in partnership with The Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation & USC, (Fall, 2017)

Faculty Panelist, “Teaching Critical Reasoning in the Current Political Climate,” 20 January 2017, Faculty Development Committee, Writing Program, USC

Faculty Advisor, Poetry Slam Team of USC
2016-2018

Faculty Panelist, “Engaging Students in the Classroom,” 5 February 2016, Faculty Development Committee, Writing Program, USC

Thematic Coordinator, Issues in Contemporary Economics, Writing Program, USC
2014-2016
Supervising and facilitating assignment development for instructors of WRIT 150 (including full-time, part-time, and graduate student instructors). Thematic Coordinators coordinate and facilitate faculty development meetings for instructors within each thematic, develop faculty best practices, develop assignments with individual instructors, lead multiple socialization readings each semester, develop curriculum.

Faculty Mentor, Writing Program, USC
2014-2018
Mentoring faculty, offering guidance concerning professional goals, lesson planning, writing assignments, conferencing techniques, grading challenges, etc., including in-class teaching observation and evaluation each year

Faculty Participant, Curriculum Caucus, Faculty Council, USC
2015-2016
Partnering to develop proposals regarding curriculum in Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences

Faculty Participant, Lower Division Curriculum Committee, Writing Program, USC
2015-2016
Partnering to develop policies regarding lower division curriculum (Fall, 2015)

Faculty Participant, New Hire Transition Committee, Writing Program, USC
2015-2016
Partnering to coordinate the arrival, orientation, and mentoring of incoming full-time faculty as they transition into their first year at USC; co-author, New Faculty Guide (Spring, Summer and Fall, 2015, Spring 2016)

Session leader, Summer Orientation for New Faculty, Writing Program, USC
2015
Co-led two sessions for new Writing Program faculty: “Practicalities” and “Your Involvement in the Writing Program” (Summer 2015)

Teaching Assistant, Summer Academy, South Central Scholars, USC
2014, 2016
Working to support the lectures given and curriculum developed by professor, facilitating discussion seminars, evaluating and giving detailed feedback on student work, leading writing workshops, and mentoring students as they prepare for their final year in high school and college applications (Summers 2014, 2016)

Course Design, WRIT 150, Thematic Approaches: Issues in Contemporary Economics, Writing Program, USC
2014-2015
Researching and developing syllabus, writing projects, readings, conceptual glossary, and ancillary writing activities for new WRIT 150 thematic in economics (Summer 2014, Summer 2015)

Mentor, (W)rites of Passage, Neighborhood Academic Initiative, USC
2013-2015
Meeting individually and/or in small groups with local high school students in the NAI program, offering feedback and mentoring as students compose college applications

Affiliation Group Coordinator, Writing Program, USC,
2014
supervising and facilitating assignment development for nine Part-Time Lecturers and Assistant Lecturers who teach WRIT 140 (Spring 2014)

Affiliation Group Co-Coordinator, Writing Program, USC
2013
Supervising and facilitating assignment development for two Part-Time and Assistant Lecturers who teach WRIT 140 (Fall 2013)

Faculty Participant, CATCH Professional Development, CATCH
2012-2013
Weekly professional development meetings in which faculty share experience and insights to improve classroom management and teaching skills, in order to meet specific state-mandated testing goals.

Faculty participant, Part-time Faculty English Practicum, Cerritos College
2012
A monthly gathering of part-time faculty in order to exchange ideas, share experience, and sharpen teaching skills, in order to grow pedagogically

Faculty Participant, Coalition of the Willing, Biola University
2009-2010
Joined a team of faculty from across the university to discuss and present about the relationship between faith and scholarship.

Mentor, Quick Start Faculty Mentor Program, Biola University
2009
Mentored new faculty during their first semester at the university.

Keynote Speaker, St. John the Apostle Paper Conference, Biola University
2009

Faculty Chaperone, Torrey Europe, Biola University
2009
Three-week trip to Greece, Italy, and Turkey, to study the writing of Plato, Dante, and Paul the Apostle.

Faculty Chaperone, Urban Plunge, Biola University
2009
Overnight trip to downtown Los Angeles — including to Our Lady of the Angels Cathedral, Skid Row, Olvera Street, and Grand Central Market, in order to explore the culture(s) of Los Angeles.

Torrey Honors Institute, Torrey Writing Program Proposal, Biola University
2008
Proposed a new writing program to the Torrey Honors Institute, one they approved and moved forward with the following school year.

Graduate Student Participant, New Faculty Search Committee, English Department, University of Pittsburgh
2006-2007
Participated in the search for new fiction faculty, reading CVs, interviewing and voting for candidates.

Faculty Advisor, Literary Society, Lynwood High School
2003-2005
Advised after-school academic and service club. We read and discussed contemporary literature, workshopped student creative writing, and volunteered at the local hospital.

PUBLIC SPEAKING

“My friends Robert, Rachel, and Ronaldo. What stories do we tell while we wait? An Advent sermon.” Sermon, New Heart Community Church, Whittier, CA, 7 December 2017

“What is the Contract with the Reader?” Lecture, South Central Scholars, USC, 28 July 2016

“But Who Is My Prophet?” Sermon, New Heart Community Church, Whittier, CA, 7 February 2016

Guest, Small Audience: Discussion and Improv, Episode 9: “Art and Vision” (podcast), 17 December 2015

“The Apostles’ Puzzle. Or, Logic Karate. Or, How Not to Read the Bible, Please, Because It’s a Story, Not Metaphysics Class.” Sermon, New Heart Community Church, Whittier, CA, 8 February 2015

“Praxis: Creative Entrepreneurs at Work.” Panelist, Go: The Converge Summit 2015, Newport Beach, CA, 10 January 2015

“Navigating The WeaveWriter Roadmap.” Panelist, WeaveWriter webinar with Dane Sanders, Newport Beach, CA, 22 October 2014

“The world is like itself; I mean, Who is God?” Sermon, New Heart Community Church, Whittier, CA, 14 September 2014

“The Apostles’ Puzzle. Or, Logic Karate. Or, How Not to Read the Bible, Please, Because It’s a Story, Not Metaphysics Class.” Sermon, New Hearth Community Church, Whittier, CA, 8 February 2015

“Praxis: Creative Entrepreneurs at Work.” Panelist, Go: The Converge Summit 2015, Newport Beach, CA, 10 January 2015

“Navigating The WeaveWriter Roadmap” guest panelist, WeaveWriter webinar with Dane Sanders, Newport Beach, CA, 22 October 2014

“The world is like itself; I mean, Who is God?” Sermon, New Heart Community Church, Whittier, CA, 14 September 2014

“Swedish Jesus. Reconciliation. And Peter’s Beautiful Awful Horrifying Dumb Lovely Faith.” Sermon, New Heart Community Church, 6 April 2014

“Christianity = Salvation = Faith = Not works = Beliefs = Agreeing with true sentences = Finding & agreeing with insightful true sentences make me a better Christian = Self-awareness & believing true sentences are all I really need. Discuss.” Sermon, New Heart Community Church, La Mirada, CA, 24 November 2013

“Alcoholics Anonymous, Spiritual Practices, and Lent.” Sermon, New Heart Community Church, 12 February 2012

“The logic of stories. Tertullian. Alcoholics Anonymous. Questions. Possibilities. Other things, too.” Lectures, Summit Ministries, Manitou Springs, CO, 4 July 2011

UnLearn Christianity: Diverse Identities Programming, guest panelist, representing a generous voice in Christian apologetics, Whittier College, 24 March 2011

Fiction Workshop, guest teacher and workshop leader, Department of English, Biola University, 16 September 2010

“Apologetics, the Letter to Diognetus, and My Friend Helen.” Lecture, Whittier Area Community Church, 8 October 2009

“Dante’s Poetry, Dante’s Landscape,” Lecture, Biola University, 27 May 2009

“A Rebellion of the Branches against the Tree: C.S. Lewis, the 20th Century, and Bright Eyes.” Lecture, Biola University, 31 March 2009

“A Fine Grain of Stupidity: Flannery O’Connor’s Craft of Fiction Writing,” Lecture, Biola University, 12 November 2008

The Little Prince: How to Cultivate Community,” Lecture, Whittier Area Community Church, 30 October 2008

INVITED READINGS

Novel excerpt, Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, CA
23 February 2011

Novel excerpt, St. John the Apostle Paper Conference, Keynote Speaker, Biola University
2 May 2009

Novel excerpt, Graduate Thesis Reading & Defense, open to the public, University of Pittsburgh
18 April 2008

Novel excerpt, University of Pittsburgh’s Creative Writing Awards Ceremony
10 April 2008

Novel excerpt, Fuel & Fuddle, Faculty & Graduate Reading Series, University of Pittsburgh
1 November 2007

Creative Nonfiction, Graduate Thesis Reading & Defense, open to the public, University of Pittsburgh
13 April 2007

Short Fiction, Fuel & Fuddle, Faculty & Graduate Reading Series, University of Pittsburgh
15 September 2005

COMMUNITY SERVICE, LEADERSHIP, AND ACTIVISM

Elder, New Heart Community Church, Whittier, CA, three-year appointment, elected by church members to help lead the church in all major decisions, including church direction, personnel, finances, theological alliances, and pastoral care
2017-Present

Judge, Whittier High School Senior Projects, Whittier High School, Whittier, CA, observing and evaluating presentations of high school seniors, 7 December 2017
2017

Panelist, “Black Lives Matter: Rights and Resistance,” Politicon, with Cat Brooks, Melina Abdullah, Brother Brian Muhammed, Tifanei Nikol Ressl-Moyer, Patrisse Cullors, and Guadalupe Chavez, moderated by Touré and American Ferrera, Pasadena, CA
2017

Children’s Minister, New Heart Community Church, Whittier, CA
2016

Co-Organizer, “A Mother’s Story: the Path of Pain and Resilience”: panel presentation of mothers who have lost their children to police violence, including Samaria Rice, mother of Tamir Rice, Anaheim, CA
2016

Panelist, “UMOJA Presents: the Roots of Racism in America,” educational screening and panel discussion, featuring Jennifer Rojas (ACLU SoCal) Stephanie Lindo (Black Student Union, Biola University), and Brad Christerson (professor, Biola University) 19 November 2015, Fullerton College, Fullerton, CA
2015

Organizer, “Orange County #CaravanForJustice Stop,” Co-sponsored “teach-in” event with ACLU, Ella Baker Center, and Just Love Coalition, featuring Patrisse Cullors (founder, Dignity and Power Now; cofounder, #BlackLivesMatter), 8 October 2015, First Christian Church, Whittier, CA
2015

Organizer, “Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos or Community?” Just Love Coalition panel with JLC cofounder Justin Campbell and the Reverend Dr. Jeff Hood, 25 June 2015, First Christian Church, Whittier, CA
2015

Organizer, “Systemic Racism: Is That Really a Thing?” Just Love Coalition panel with JLC cofounder Justin Campbell, Jonnie Russell (Contributing Fellow, USC Center for Religion and Civic Culture; chaplain, Union Rescue Mission), and Dr. Brad Elliott Stone (Professor of Philosophy; Chair, Department of African American Studies, Loyola Marymount University) 3 June 2015, First Christian Church, Whittier, CA
2015

Organizer, “#BlackSpring Town Hall,” Panelist with JLC cofounder Justin Campbell, Evan Bunch (Dignity and Power Now, Black Lives Matter—Los Angeles), and Ray Lewis (Dignity and Power Now, Black Lives Matter—Los Angeles), Just Love Coalition, 5 May 2015, Saint Stephen’s Episcopal Church, Whittier, CA, 5 May 2015, St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church, Whittier, CA
2015

AYSO Volunteer (Head Coach & Team Parent), AYSO Region 75, facilitating practices, games, and schedules for two seasons
2014-2015

Deacon, New Heart Community Church, organizing and leading in services, navigating church decisions and theological controversies, partnering with outside organizations such as My Refuge House, public speaking, facilitating events open to the public, leading ongoing church programs
2010-2015

Coach, Whittier Area Community Church (WACC) Sports Program, coaching six seasons in WACC’s children’s soccer and basketball programs
2011-2013

Director, Young Adult Ministries, WACC, Whittier, CA, leading and facilitating Sunday-morning and Thursday-evening gatherings, teaching, helping to form the community of the young adults socially, spiritually, and relationally
2004-2005

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