Graduate Students

Leslie AngleseyLeslie Anglesey
Ph.D., Rhetoric and Composition
Leslie's research interests include feminist rhetorics, disability studies, and composition studies. She holds a Writing Initiative teacher assistantship with the University Writing Center.

Matthew BakerMatthew Baker
MFA, Creative Writing
Baker's focus is on poetry. He received a B.A. in English and creative writing from Elon University in North Carolina before coming to Reno. Much of his poetry uses narrative techniques and surreal imagery to investigate the personal and the public (think social issues). Perhaps his favorite poet from the past five years is Natalie Diaz. So, when she signed his copy of "When My Brother Was an Aztec" at AWP 2016, he could barely contain himself. Perhaps his favorite book from 2016 so far has been "Look" by Solmaz Sharif. #allofthefeels

Raluca BalasaRaluca Balasa
MFA, Creative Writing
Balasa has specific interests in fantasy, science fiction, likable antagonists and love/hate relationships. Her work has appeared in The Spectatorial, The Danforth Review, The Lorelei Signal, and Fantasy Scroll Magazine. When she's not writing, she can be found playing the piano or spilling things.

Molly BeckwithMolly Beckwith
MFA, Creative Writing
Beckwith is an MFA candidate in fiction, although she also loves reading and writing poetry. If she isn't writing, she's spending time with her beagle/collie, Pepper. She hails from Arkansas and earned her B.A. from Mississippi State University.

Jaquelyn DavisJaquelyn Davis
M.A., Writing
Davis graduated with a B.A. in English from Saint Mary's College of California. Her research interests include writing program administration, service-learning, writing centers, and ecological pedagogy. After earning her master's degree, Davis plans to pursue a career in teaching writing at the community college and high school levels in her native Sierra Nevada foothills.

Ian H. De JongIan H. De Jong
Ph.D., Literature
Ian's research clusters around adaptation praxis, early modern drama, and theories of reception and audience. He earned an M.A. at Marquette University, and a B.S. at Concordia University Wisconsin. He enjoys flashy tweed blazers.

Brady EdwardsBrady Edwards
Ph.D., Rhetoric and Composition
Brady's research interests includes mentorship, issues of power and authority in the composition classroom, and ethics. He love to camp, play tennis, drink Pepsi, read, write, and run, not necessarily in that order.

AnnElise HatjakesAnnElise Hatjakes
MFA, fiction
AnnElise earned her master's degree in writing, and her thesis was a collection of short stories that explored the difficulty with which we navigate the space between who we are and who we want to be. She teaches composition courses at the University of Nevada, Reno and teaches British literature at the Davidson Academy of Nevada. When she's not teaching, reading, or writing, she can be found proselytizing about the wonders of Reno or entertaining her two cats.

Brendan JohnstonBrendan Johnston
Ph.D., Literature
Johnston's research interests include transatlantic modernism, modernist poetry and poetics, psychoanalytic and critical theory, posthumanism(s), and continental philosophy. After finishing comps, he plans to continue work on a project that reconsiders the poetry of Wallace Stevens and William Carlos Williams in light of the recent debates in new materialism and 20th/21st-century critical theory.

Austin Kelly
Ph.D., Rhetoric & Composition
Kelly is interested in the ways neoliberalism influences public discourse. If he is not reading or writing, you can find him mountain biking, hiking, playing guitar, picking the banjo, or generally exploring the universe with his wife, son, and two dogs.

Kat LambrechtKat Lambrecht
Ph.D., Rhetoric and Composition
Lambrecht is working on a dissertation about interdisciplinary language and habitus development. In addition to disciplinary rhetoric, she is interested in corpus analysis, student agency, research methodologies, and theories of identity. To reflect the various stages of her education, she values bringing linguistic and rhetorical frameworks to the research questions that she formulates, which are often about composition and identity development. Outside of school, Lambrecht is involved with her local speech and debate organization, loves to travel, and enjoys taking care of her puppy brothers, Mojo and Luke Skywalker.

Merrilyne LundahlMerrilyne Lundahl
Ph.D., Rhetoric & Composition
Lundahl received a B.S. from Utah State University in American studies/English with a biology minor and an M.S. from the University of Montana-Missoula in Environmental Studies. She took part in a professional residency in environmental education with the Teton Science Schools. Her  research interests includes "transformational" pedagogies, integrated literacy and outdoor education, university-community partnerships, and ethnographically-informed research methods.

Joanne MallariJoanne Mallari
M.F.A., Creative Writing
Mallari's emphasis is poetry. She loves minimalism and karaoke.

Clinton MohsClinton Mohs
Ph.D., Literature
Mohs studies the literature of the long 19th century, including western, Native American, and African American literatures, and silent film. His long-term research investigates how the railroad made western landscapes increasingly accessible to racialized subjects in the long 19th century.

Francisco NahoeFrancisco Nahoe
Ph.D., Literature
Nahoe is a Franciscan friar and a Catholic priest. For the past 33 years, he has belonged to the Order of Friars Minor Conventual and, at present, he works as the promoter of the Franciscan Vietnam Mission from Holy Family Friary in the Bay Area. When he started the Ph.D. program at the University of Nevada, Reno, however, he still was the rector of Saint Thomas Aquinas Cathedral in Reno. Before coming to Nevada, Nahoe earned a B.A. in philosophy at Pomona College and an M.A. in comparative literature at Dartmouth. His theological studies took place in Rome at the Pontifical Seraphicum, where he was awarded an STB, and later at Harvard, where he received a Th.M. degree in biblical studies. As he draws to the end of his time in the English department, Nahoe is writing a dissertation on the Italian verse of Milton. So far, his experience of study and camaraderie in the graduate program at the University has been wonderful, and he can't imagine having had a more supportive environment in which to work.

Lee Olsen PortraitLee Olsen
Ph.D., Literature
Olsen focuses on post-1900 American (non)fiction, ethics, ecology, ecocriticism, and posthuman theory. His current work explores multiethnic, multigenre writers of the American West. He earned an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing from Western Washington University, where he studied life writing and ecocriticism, and a bachelor's in literary studies from Utah State University, where he focused on American modernism and nature writing. Between those degrees, Olsen worked at USU Press and a research university in Thailand. Aside from scholarly pursuits, he enjoys traveling, hiking, camping, backpacking, canoeing, and open-water swimming.

Peter Picetti
Ph.D., Literature
Picetti's interests include Renaissance poetry, prose, and drama in addition to John Milton and the epic. He has an M.F.A .in poetry from the University of Massachusetts, Boston and did his undergraduate work at the University of Montana. He thinks Williams is the great American poet, and he loves spending time with his wife, dog, and cat.

Andrew B. Ross
Ross serves as a Bilinski Education Foundation Dissertation Fellow in the University of Nevada, Reno's College of Liberal Arts. As an ecocritic, Ross' research focuses upon the relationship between vision and language as applied to the literary and environmental culture of America before the Civil War. His dissertation, "A Natural History of the Eye: Shared Vision in Early American Natural History, 1784-1839," uncovers the theories of human and nonhuman vision articulated by natural history in the early republic. Ross' scholarly interests include early American literature, the environmental humanities, visual studies, and critical animal/plant studies. He has taught courses in the English department, Core Writing, and Core Humanities programs.

Brian RoweBrian Rowe
MFA, Fiction
Rowe writes mostly in the young adult genre, although he dabbles in horror and literary fiction from time to time (and sometimes, like in the case of his upcoming thesis, he try to mix all three). He received his M.A. in English from the University of Nevada, Reno and a B.A. in film from Loyola Marymount University. Rowe's passions are indeed anything to do with writing, books, and movies, and he also has had a crush on Sandra Bullock for going on 22 years. Don't judge.

Scott ShumankerScott Shumaker
Ph.D., Literature
His interests include postmodernism, 20th-century American literature, and Native American literature. His recent work explores the impact of technology on identity and has appeared in The Explicator ("The House of Mirth and the Desert of the Real: Edith Wharton and Hyperreality," volume 73, 2015). He recently completed his M.A. in English at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, Arizona, and is pleased to be in the high desert again in Reno. He loves his fiancé, Erica, slow road trips, and canyon country.

Olivia SouleOlivia Soule
M.F.A., Creative Writing
Soule teaches freshman composition, goes to poetry readings and presents papers at conferences. She's interested in writing poetry, essays and fiction. Three of her poems will be published in the upcoming issue of the Haight Ashbury Literary Journal. She has a bachelor's degree in English with an emphasis in creative writing and Italian from University of California, Los Angles. She speaks Italian and a bit of Spanish and French.

Natalie Turley
M.F.A., Creative Writing
Primarily, Turley is interested in speculative fiction -- particularly the fantasy and myth genres. She received a B.A. in English writing from the University of Nevada, Reno and A.A. from Truckee Meadows Community College.

Jonathan Villalobos
Ph.D., Literature
Jonathan studies environmental literature, women's literature, and the literature of the American South. He earned his B.A. in English at the University of Central Florida and his M.A. in English at Stetson University before heading west to the University of Nevada, Reno. He dislikes the heat, small children, and writing about himself in the third person. In his infrequent spare time, he enjoys mixing cocktails and squelching his dachshund's diabolical world domination plots.

Blake Watson
Ph.D., Rhetoric and Composition
He has an M.A. in writing from the University of Nevada, Reno. Watson has been teaching composition courses in the English department since 2012, which is when he first moved to Nevada. He is originally from Memphis, Tennessee. His dissertation work focuses on visual rhetoric and argumentation and the ways public space gets policed through urban design.

Justin WilliamsJustin S. Williams
M.F.A., Poetry
Williams received his undergraduate degree in English/literature at the College of Charleston. He is interested in how "I/me" relates to "you" and how "they" can become "us."

Adrian Matt Zytkoskee
Ph.D., Rhetoric and Composition
Zytkoskee's research interests includes trauma studies, rhetorics of emotion, and life writing. He holds an M.A. from Humboldt State University and spent four years teaching composition in Dubai before joining the University of Nevada, Reno program. His free time (as if that really exists) is spent hauling his toddlers around in a bike cart and attending as many Jiu Jitsu classes as he can sneak in.