Meet the Fellows
Writing fellows are a select group of graduate students recommended by their departments for their demonstrated mastery of writing in their disciplines and their aptitude for peer review. In ongoing training with the GSWC Director, fellows develop an understanding of writing in the disciplines, theories of tutoring, and working with international graduate students, among other topics.
Learn more about the work our fellows do in this feature article, "Meet the Writing Center Fellows."
Director: Linda Macri
Oral Communication Fellows
|Ari Perez||Victoria (Tori) McDermott|
Linda Macri, Ph.D. (Director)
Dr. Macri is the Director of Academic and Professional Development in the Graduate School and has directed the Graduate School Writing Center since 2014. From 2005-2013, she served as the director of the Academic Writing Program in the English Department. Her interests are in composition studies and rhetorical theory, graphic novels and comic studies, and women’s literature. She has taught a range of courses from "English 101" to "Writing for Non-Profits" to "The Rhetoric of Fiction." She currently serves as a co-chair of the Consortium on Graduate Communication. According to Dr. Macri, directing the Graduate School Writing Center is "the best job on campus because everyday I get to learn about the amazing research that our passionate, committed graduate students are engaged in."
Natasha is a Doctoral student in the Department of Sociology. Her research interests include race & migration, immigrant and transnational families, and gender and work. She is the co-author of ”Migration Matters: Mobility in a Globalizing World” published by the Oxford University Press in 2016. Natasha has a Master’s in International Development from the London School of Economics, UK and a BA in Economics from Fergusson College, India. She has worked in migration research and policy advocacy for the Government of India, the International Labor Organisation (ILO) and the World Health Organisation (WHO). In her free time, Natasha likes to practice yoga, bike, run, cook, read, and constantly update her list of '100 best books'.
Natalie Crnosija is a doctoral student in the Maryland Institute for Applied Environmental Health. Her research interests include spatial epidemiology, land use, and air pollution monitoring. Natalie has a Master of Public Health degree from Stony Brook University, where she first worked as a writing tutor. When not at work, she likes to read, cook, watch films and hike.
Mary is a doctoral candidate in the department of Human Development and Quantitative Methodology in the College of Education. She earned her BA in Psychology with a concentration in Cognitive Science and a certificate in Writing from Wesleyan University. Mary’s research focuses on how children learn math through play and games, and how social interactions during play can facilitate math learning in early childhood. She has experience as a graduate research assistant and teaching assistant for EDHD courses. Outside of academics, Mary enjoys baking and reading, as well as spending time with her friends at local cat cafes. On campus, she is also a Catholic Terp and a member of the Terrapin Tap Troupe.
Courtney is a doctoral student in the Minority and Urban Education program in the College of Education. She is a member of the Society of McNair Fellows and earned an M.A. in Special Education from The George Washington University. Her life's work has focused on building partnerships with resilient Black youth through education, advocacy, and workforce development. Courtney's research investigates unschooling, homeschooling and other forms of self-directed education as current and historical forms of Black fugitivity and refusal. Her work illuminates the liberatory education practices and decolonized parenting strategies engaged by Black families to help facilitate their children's autonomy, agency, and freedom. Beyond her academic pursuits, Courtney enjoys long walks, murder mysteries, and supporting families as a birth worker.
Kelsey is a doctoral student in Electrical Engineering with undergraduate degrees in EE and Physiology and Biology from the University of Connecticut. She studies auditory neuroscience, or how the brain processes sounds, using a combination of experimental and computational approaches.
Jordan is a doctoral student in Theatre and Performance Studies. Jordan's research interests are in black theatre and performance, black feminist theories and praxis, musical theatre, black girlhood studies, and popular entertainment. As such, Jordan's dissertation project is centered on black women in musical theatre in the nineteenth- and twentieth centuries. Her work has been published in Theatre Journal. A publicly engaged scholar, Jordan is also the co-host and co-producer of Daughters of Lorraine, a podcast on black theatre from a black feminist lens, which is supported by HowlRound Theatre Commons. Jordan is a playwright and dramaturg, whose work centers upon the lives of black girls and women. When not working, Jordan loves reading, listening to podcasts, tweeting, and watching reality television (currently Survivor!)
Teodora Kljaic is a doctoral student in the Chemistry and Biochemistry Department in the College of Mathematics and Natural Sciences. She earned her BA in Biochemistry and Neuroscience at a liberal arts institution - Grinnell College. At Grinnell, her love for writing started in courses of film analysis, philosphy and anthropology. She continued her education at UMD where she earned a MS in Chemistry doing research which combined carbohydrate chemistry, peptide chemistry, glycobiology and enzymology. Her PhD research focuses on analytical method development for kinetic isotope effects on enzymes involved in or responsible for various bacterial infections. She has been a TA or tutor for Biochemistry, General and Organic Chemistry classes. Throughout the years, she was sought me out to help people edit their school essays, Master’s theses, and applications to post-baccalaureate, graduate school and medical school programs. Outside of academics, Teodora enjoys reading, running and dancing to Afro-Latin and Caribbean music.
Kristina Kramarczuk is a doctoral student in the Department of Teaching and Learning, Policy and Leadership in the College of Education and is currently working as a research assistant for the Maryland Center for Women in Computing in the Computer Science Department. Her scholarship primarily focuses on studying access and opportunity for underrepresented students in science and science identity development. She has a Bachelor's of Science in Microbiology and Spanish from the University of Wisconsin, Madison (2016) and a Master's in Education and Social Change from the University of Miami (2018). During her professional career, she has served as a high school chemistry teacher in Miami, Florida, a computer science teacher for high school girls across the country, and a teaching assitant for a "Digital Learning" course through the College of Education. In her free time, Kristina likes to play competitive soccer, spend time with friends, and read new books.
Danielle LaPlace is a PhD student in Women’s Studies at the University of Maryland, College Park. She received a B.A. in French (2010) and International Studies (2010) from University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and a Masters of Development Practice (2014) from the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. Following her Australian adventure she returned to her home country of St. Kitts and Nevis and served briefly as the Executive Officer in the Department of Gender Affairs. She completed a Masters in Women’s and Gender Studies (2019) at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro with her thesis Foreign Bodies: Public Health and the Regulation of Racialized Threats to Empire and the Citizen Body investigating how public health informs the constitution of and responses to racialized contagion.
Clark is a PhD candidate in Behavioral and Community Health. Outside of school, Clark works full-time professionally in the fields of public health, traffic safety, and emergency preparedness. He is currently the lead Research Associate at the Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine supporting the National Center for Disaster Medicine and Public Health. A lawyer and public health professional by training, Clark's research interests focus on the use of legal and public policy interventions to address public health and safety issues (especially those related to societal sleepiness and fatigue). Clark is a former Notes and Comments editor for the Journal of Health Care Law and Policy and is currently a reviewer for several research journals in the areas of public health, sleep and circadian science, and traffic safety. He is licensed to practice law in the State of Maryland and the District of Columbia and is certified in public health by the National Board of Public Health Examiners. When not working for school or for pay, Clark struggles to stop his two preschool-aged boys from destroying his house.
Kristyn Lue is a PhD candidate in the Department of Teaching and Learning, Policy and Leadership with a concentration in Mathematics Education. Her research interests focus on systemic and structural influences on mathematics socialization and identity development as it relates to racial equity and justice. Prior to her doctoral studies, she received her master's degree in Higher Education at the University of Maryland, and her bachelor's degree in Applied Mathematics from UC Berkeley with minors in English and Education.
Heather is a doctoral student in the Neuroscience and Cognitive Science program, working with Dr. Matthew Roesch. Before coming to UMD, she earned her BA in Psychology from St. Mary's College of Maryland and was a research assistant at the University of Maryland School of Medicine and Johns Hopkins University. Her research seeks to understand what parts of the brain are involved in choice and decision-making, and how the functions of these brain regions are affected by psychiatric conditions, aging, and drug addiction. Outside of school, Heather enjoys watching horror movies, reading comics, and drawing.
Ahana Mallick is a doctoral student in the Biological Sciences Graduate Program in the College of Computer, Mathematical, and Natural Sciences. She completed her Bachelor's of Science in Microbiology from the University of Calcutta (2016) where she also studied the effect of plant extracts on gastric adenocarcinoma cells. During her Master’s of Science in Chemical and Molecular Biology at the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur (2018), she was involved in developing reagents to aid in T-cell diagnostics and therapeutics. At UMD, her research is aimed at understanding how serotonin modulates olfaction in the fruit fly (Drosophila). She is also actively engaged in mentoring both graduate and undergraduate students as part of her TA appointment in various courses. In her free time she can be found exploring the city, painting or trying out new recipes in the kitchen.
Upamanyu is a doctoral candidate in Mechanical Engineering with his research focused primarily on multi-scale mechanistic simulations of cellulose. His research is very interdisciplinary and broadly falls in the interface of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science. Besides, he also has training in experimental techniques such as nanofabrication, Atomic Force Microscopy, Scanning Electron Microscopy, tensile and ballistic tests. Before starting his Ph.D., Upamanyu received his MS in Mechanical Engineering from Iowa State University. Throughout his graduate career, he has been a TA and lab instructor for various courses such as Engineering Mechanics and Heat Transfer. Upamanyu enjoys collaboration and has already published in journals such as Nature, Small Methods, Advanced Functional Materials, ACS Nano, Materials Today, Chemical Physics Letters and Applied Physics Letters. He has experience of writing a review paper published in Advanced Materials as a current progress report and a book chapter for Nanotechnology series to be published by Springer. When not doing research, Upamanyu enjoys reading, listening to music, attending concerts and hiking.
Jared is a PhD candidate in Theatre and Performance Studies. His primary research concerns how soccer is used on the pitch and in the arts to negotiate identity, contest political power, and advance economic gain. His work is featured or forthcoming in such journals as Theatre Research International, Comparative Drama, and the Journal of Dramatic Theory and Crticism, as well as in a series of websites documenting the history of The National Theatre in Washington, D.C. Jared is an experienced teacher at the collegiate and secondary level, and has served as an instructor or teaching assistant for introductory courses, community engagement projects, and dramatic writing workshops. Jared is a dramaturg, playwright, and teaching artist in the D.C. area, as well as an avid D&D nerd and occasional cyclist. He looks forward to expanding his horizons by working with fellow graduate students to realize their research goals.
Victoria Scrimer (Theatre and Performance Studies)
Victoria is a doctoral candidate in the school of Theatre, Dance and Performance Studies where she is finishing her dissertation "Beyond Resistance: Performing Protest in a Postdramatic Age." Her research is focused on the relationship between dramatic theory and activism. Victoria is the two-time winner of the Comparative Drama Conference's Anthony Ellis prize for outstanding paper by a graduate student and her work has appeared in Text & Presentation, Etudes, and Critical Stages. In addition to serving as the graduate assistant for the writing center, Victoria currently teaches dramatic literature and theatre history at the University of Mary Washington and writing and rhetoric at Catholic University.
Kathryn is a doctoral student in the Department of Communication on the communication science and social cognition track. Her research focuses on media effects of solutions journalism and health communication. Before coming to the University of Maryland, she taught journalism and public relations for five years at the University of Oregon, where she co-founded The Catalyst Journalism Project, a research and teaching collaborative. Before that, she was a newspaper journalist and PR professional for several years. Outside of school, she spends her free time with her two amazing daughters.
Ari Perez Montes is a Ronald E. McNair Fellow and a current graduate student in the Department of Communication. They earned their Bachelor’s degree from California State University, Monterey Bay with concentrations in Communication Studies and Ethnic & Gender Studies and a minor in Psychology. They are particularly interested in the formation of Queer/Trans Identities and Spaces. In their research they try to emphasize and center the importance of community engagement and accessibility to research. Areas of interest are Race, Gender, Sexual Orientation, Intergroup Communication, Algorithms, Microaggressions.
Ashley Aragón is a current Ph.D. student in the Department of Communication studying health communication and advocacy. She is particularly interested in using communication as a transformative tool to share diverse stories, encourage inclusive health education, and promote disease prevention. Prior to attending the University of Maryland, Ashley attended California State University, Los Angeles where she received a B.A. and an M.A. in Communication Studies. As an educator, Ashley has over four years of experience in teaching various communication courses to students across disciplines. She currently teaches COMM107D at the University of Maryland. Ashley enjoys spending time outdoors, catching live music concerts, and following her favorite Los Angeles sports teams.
Victoria (Tori) is a doctoral student in the Department of Communication in the Public Relations and Strategic Communication track, and former director of the Public Speaking Center at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. She has served as an instructor of record for a variety of communication courses at both the University of Maryland and the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Her research explores how power is communicated in traditionally masculine environments (e.g., sciences, the military), as well as effective pedagogy for online instruction. Outside of school, Tori can be found running and hiking with her dog Rose or searching for new coffeeshops in the D.C. area to try.