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works sighted summer 2019

Greetings from the SCU English Department!

Phyllis BrownI write from a threshold, looking back over my 37 years in the English Department with nostalgia and looking forward with great anticipation to my new one-year term as Department Chair followed by retirement in June 2020. Intense awareness of change colors my thoughts of the past and of the future. In what ways have teaching and learning changed for the better? What practices will we need to continue in the spirit of Ignatian values and best pedagogical practices, and how can we adapt what we do best to the needs of the most diverse and best-prepared student body yet admitted to Santa Clara University?

Of one thing I am sure: the faculty I work with (in our department and throughout the University) are passionately committed and richly experienced educational practitioners. The story in this newsletter about LEAD Scholar participation in a Shakespeare workshop at San Quentin Prison provides one great example. Our faculty's close collaboration each year with Canterbury Scholars, teaching and mentoring outside their regular teaching assignments, is another example. Canterbury Scholars attested to the importance of their faculty mentors at the spring department event celebrating students' achievements. And the brief notice of a book created by students in Claudia Monpere McIsaac's first-year writing course in collaboration with fourth-graders at Lazear School in Oakland provides a glimpse of the beauty of this exceptional project.

A different kind of example is Theresa Conefrey's ongoing work exploring the value of ePortfolios to enhance learning. This summer she co-presented "ePortfolios for Civic Scientific Literacy," which focused on the use of ePortfolios for improving information literacy and increasing undergraduate engagement in STEM fields. Because of our department's commitment to writing in first-year sequences, other Core courses, and courses for our majors and minors, our teaching and research extend across disciplines in many ways.

Another example of our faculty's impact was the May four-part event "Analog/Digital: Premodern Technology Meets Silicon Valley," celebrating the convergence of multimedia, technology, and archival work, which allow participants to transport themselves to the past through interactive exhibits. See Jackie Hendrick's article in this newsletter. I will note in particular alumna Tanya Schmidt's moving testimony to the importance of Professor Emerita Judith Dunbar's teaching and mentoring.

Enjoy reading!

Phyllis Brown

Community Accomplishments

Michelle Burnham book cover   Michelle Burnham Uncovers the Pacific's Global and Literary Connections in the Age of Revolutions

Michelle Burnham answers questions about her new book, Transoceanic America, which explores the Pacific Ocean's influence on American Development, literature, and culture from 1770-1820.

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Hawley Covers  

John Hawley Edits Two Volumes

Professor John Hawley has continued his work making global literature more accessible to undergraduates and their teachers by means of essay collections applying a range of literary and cultural studies theories to particular works of literature.

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Apara Nanda   Apara Nanda Publishes Two Book Chapters this Summer

Professor Apara Nanda continues to research and write about novels that explore complex issues facing our culture today.

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Save Our Earth story   Save Our Earth Stories

During Winter quarter 2019, students in Claudia Monpere McIsaac's Critical Thinking & Writing sequence collaborated with fourth graders in Oakland's Lazear School to write and illustrate a book with stories about healthy eating and food waste. An Enhancing Teaching with Technology Grant allowed hard-bound copies of the book to be printed and given to all the students involved and allowed fourth graders to visit SCU, meet their collaborators, and record their stories.
San Quentin workshop   Exploring Literature and Social Justice at San Quentin

On January 27, 2019, Maura Tarnoff, Cruz Medina, and 16 students in SCU's LEAD Scholars Program participated in a social justice workshop with inmates in the Shakespeare at San Quentin arts-in-corrections program.

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Digital Analog event   Analog/Digital: Premodern Technology Meets Silicon Valley

On May 22, dozens of students, staff, faculty, and visitors came together to participate in a four-part event celebrating the convergence of multimedia, technology, and archival work. The event allowed visitors to transport themselves to the past through interactive exhibits. 

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UX design presentation   Design for English Majors During and After College

User experience (UX) focuses on building and redesigning devices, experiences, and interfaces with careful attention to users, contexts, and ethical principles of research, aesthetics, and usability. As demand for UX design grows, SCU's English department pilots an in-house UX internship.

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Perla Luna, Cruz Medina, and Enrique Reynosa at CCCC   Perla Luna '19 and Cruz Medina Present at CCCC

During the 2019 College Composition and Communication Conference, senior English major Perla Luna presented with Professor Cruz Medina on a panel related to research she conducted as Medina's research assistant. 

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Riley O'Connell, Julia Joyce, and Leah Senatro   Canterbury Scholars Profiles

The Canterbury Program has, since 1997, provided faculty mentoring and financial support for select senior English majors conducting independent research projects. This year's scholars, Riley O'Connell, Julia Joyce, and Leah Senatro, wrote about their experiences.

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Erika Rasmussen reading her poetry   Writing Award Winners and Honorees

2018-19 students were recognized at our annual year-end event in the Adobe Lodge.

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First Comes Marriage book cover   Upcoming Events from Writing Forward

The Writing Forward Reading Series brings creative writers with international, national, and regional reputations to campus. English majors and minors actively engage in planning and organizing the series which gives undergraduates hands-on experience in the fields of writing, publishing, and public relations.

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High Impact Educational Practices cover   Student Employment and High Impact Practices

Student workers are increasingly important to the functioning of the English Department. Student-workers testify to the impact their work has had on their learning.

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Graduating Seniors 2019   Featured Graduating Seniors

Our graduates take on work, volunteer, and graduate school opportunities.

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Graduation Toast 2019

At our June congratulatory reception, Father Andrew Garavel, S.J., Associate Chair of the Department, addressed our graduates with these words:

We're grateful and hopeful for all and for each of you,
The pride and the promise, the grasp and the reach of you.
And so, before you leave this place
You ought to know just what a grace
Your time among us here has been,
And so, without further ado, let's begin:
Derek, Serena, Austin, and Sue,
We gladly raise a glass to you;
Likewise Dominic, Brenna, and Sam,
You are the greatest grads what am,
Along with Ethan, Leah, Lissette
(We're nearly halfway there, I bet),
Meredith, Maggie, Michaela, and Madeline,
Saverio, Perla, Brian, and Catherine,
For all of you we shout, 'Hallelujah,'
Not forgetting Jordan and Julia,
Riley and Rosey, Kimmie, Nicole,
And finally Bevin to round out the roll.
Take a moment of pride now for all you've achieved,
And think grateful thoughts for those who believed
And sacrificed that you might reach this great day.
Now all join in our toast as with one voice we say,
"Congratulations to the class of 2019!"

Check out the Fall 2019 schedule of classes.

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Santa Clara University
Department of English
St. Joseph's Hall
500 El Camino Real, Santa Clara, CA 95053
Phone: 408.554.4142