Skip navigation

College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

Department of English and Literary Arts

Department of English

Department of English and Literary Arts

Graduate Students

You may also be interested to read about our graduate students' impressive records of publication, teaching, and professional engagement.

Edward Cooper

Leia Lynn

1st Year MA Student

More about Leia

Leia is an MA student in Literary Studies. She is from China Spring, Texas, and was previously a special collections cataloger at Cushing Memorial Library and Archives after graduating from her undergraduate alma mater, Texas A&M University. While there, she studied English with a specialization in creative writing, and in 2014 won Rhetoric and Discourse Essay contest. Her work can be found at local Waco publications El Tiempo and The Briefcase, as well as Thrice Fiction, Ariel Chart, and Down in the Dirt magazine; she has also contributed to exhibit catalogs and published records to WorldCat.

Edward Cooper

Asia Wesley

1st Year MA Student

More about Asia

Asia Wesley is a first year MA student in Literary Studies. Her love of stories was enhanced by writing and studying languages in her home of Colorado, where she also received her BA in English and Spanish at the University of Denver. After spending her whole life in the colorful state, she crossed the Atlantic ocean to teach English in Southern Spain during her gap year. Upon returning, she has brought back language skills in Spanish and Portuguese and hopes to continue building upon her primary interests in Latinx and African American literature.

Edward Cooper

Samuel Rafael Barber

1st Year PhD Student

More about Samuel

Samuel Rafael Barber is the author of the chapbook "Thousands of Shredded Scraps of Paper Located across Five Landfills, That if Pieced Together Form a Message" (The Cupboard, 2019). He received his BA from Brown, MA from Columbia, and MFA from the University of Arizona, where he was an Editor-in-Chief of Sonora Review. A 2018 Calvino Prize finalist, his fiction has appeared in Chicago Quarterly Review, DIAGRAM, Green Mountains Review, Passages North, Puerto del Sol, The Rupture, Southwest Review, and elsewhere. www.samuelrafaelbarber.com

Edward Cooper

Stella Corso

1st Year PhD Student

More about Stella

Stella Corso is the author of TANTRUM (2017), selected by Douglas Kearney as winner of the 2016 Black Box Prize for Poetry and published by Rescue Press. She is a founding member of the Connecticut River Valley Poets Theater (CRVPT) and holds an MFA in poetry from UMass-Amherst.

Edward Cooper

Angela Gattuso

1st Year PhD Student

More about Angela

Angela received both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in English literature from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Her current area of research is 19th century American Literature, specifically the work of Henry David Thoreau and his memoir, Walden. Angela is interested in bringing this and other transcendental works of literature into communication with the art and study of architecture, space, place, and location. Other of her research interests include English Romanticism, ecocriticism, organicism, and pedagogy.

Edward Cooper

Madison Myers

1st Year PhD Student

More about Madison

Madison Myers is a first year PH.D. candidate in Literary Studies. She received her M.A. in English Literature and her B.A. in English Literature and Secondary English Education from Colorado State University. Her research focuses on feminist literary criticism and theory and ecocriticism in contemporary fiction and current cultural contexts. Specifically, she engages with ecofeminism, queer ecology, Anthropocene feminism, multispecies communities, emergent ecologies, and Chthulucene kin-making. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time in her garden, cooking and baking, and doting on her small zoo (four cats and two dogs!)

Edward Cooper

Anna Zumbahlen

1st Year PhD Student

More about Anna

Anna Zumbahlen is a first-year PhD candidate in poetry and a member of the young writers program faculty at Lighthouse. She is the editor-in-chief of Carve and holds an MFA in poetry from the University of Montana, where she was the recipient of the Richard Hugo Memorial Scholarship, and a BA from the University of Colorado, where she studied creative writing and religious studies. www.annazum.com

Edward Cooper

Emily Barton Altman

2nd Year PhD Student

More about Emily

Emily Barton Altman is the author of two chapbooks, "Bathymetry" (Present Tense Pamphlets, 2016), and "Alice Hangs Her Map" (forthcoming from dancing girl press). Recent poems appear in Bodega, The Journal Petra, Dream Pop Press, and elsewhere. She is a recipient of a Poets & Writers Amy Award and received her MFA from New York University.

Edward Cooper

Ben Caldwell

2nd Year PhD Student

More about Ben

Originally from southeastern Kentucky, Ben Caldwell is a first year PhD student in Literary Studies. His research interests are varied, from 19th Century American fiction to food science to dinosaurs, but he is currently focused on literary, historical, and pop cultural depictions of his native Appalachia. He is also an aspiring essayist and nonfiction writer, and has worked for Zone 3 Press as a submission judge for their Creative Nonfiction Book Award.

Edward Cooper

Cassandra Eddington

2nd Year PhD Student

More about Cassandra

Cassandra (Cass) Eddington is a poet and teacher from Utah. Her manuscript if the garden was a finalist in Kelsey Street Press’s 2017 FIRSTS! Some poems can be found on Kelsey Street Press’s blog, and in La Vague, Word For/Word, Otoliths, ditch, and grazing grains miniature collection. She develops curriculum and teaches for Colorado State University’s online creative writing minor and has worked in community arts organizing. She received her MFA from Colorado State University. )

Edward Cooper

Evelyn Hampton

2nd Year PhD Student

More about Evelyn

Evelyn has an MA in Rhetoric, Scientific & Technical Communication from the University of Minnesota and an MFA in Literary Arts from Brown University. Her second story collection, Famous Children and Famished Adults, won the Ronald Sukenick Innovative Fiction Contest and will be published by FC2 in Spring 2019. Discomfort, her first story collection, was published in 2015 by Ellipsis Press. She has lived in Minneapolis, Seattle, Providence, Eureka, Eugene, Olympia, Porto, Oaxaca, and now, Denver.

Edward Cooper

Ella Longpre

2nd Year PhD Student

More about Ella

Ella Longpre is the author of How to Keep You Alive (Civil Coping Mechanisms 2017), as well as three chapbooks, and makes music in the band Giselle and the Willys. She has worked at The Fanzine, Bombay Gin, Something on Paper, and The Massachusetts Review, and her work has appeared in The Volta, Denver Quarterly, and other journals and anthologies. She is a first-year PhD student in Creative Writing at DU and received her MFA from the Jack Kerouac School at Naropa University, where she was awarded an Anne Waldman Fellowship; she earned her BA from Smith College. Ella is nothing without her chosen family and can be found in the woods. www.ellalongpre.tumblr.com

Edward Cooper

Lucien Darjeun Meadows

2nd Year PhD Student

More about Lucien

Lucien Darjeun Meadows was born in Virginia and raised in West Virginia. His poetry has appeared in West Branch, Shenandoah, Pleiades, Narrative, and Beloit Poetry Journal. An AWP Intro Journals Project winner, Certified Interpretive Manager with the National Association for Interpretation, and PhD student at the University of Denver, he has received nominations for the Pushcart Prize and awards from the Academy of American Poets, American Alliance of Museums, and Bread Loaf Conferences. Lucien’s research explores interconnections between environment and identity through formalism, Native studies, translation theory, and working-class Romanticism. He has a profound weakness for kittens, vegan chocolate, and ultramarathons. (www.lucienmeadows.com)

Edward Cooper

Eric Mills

2nd Year PhD Student

More about Eric

Eric Mills is a first year PhD student in Literary Studies. His research focuses on the complex relationship between spatiality, locale, and liminality in the 20th-Century American novel. He has taught at numerous institutions both abroad and in the U.S., and he has served on the board of directors for City Park Jazz, the free, summer concert series here in Denver. He holds an MA in American Literature and Literary Theory from SUNY-Buffalo along with all the other degrees, majors, and certificates one picks up along the way. He has a habit of looking down at the ground when walking, which has led to the finding of over 400 four-leaf clovers in his lifetime. So far.

Edward Cooper

Elijah Null

2nd Year PhD Student

More about Elijah

Elijah Null is a PhD student in Literary Studies. He earned his BA in History and Spanish at CSU in Fort Collins. Then, he spent some time teaching ESL and English Lit at Noel Community Arts School in Denver. He attended Saint John's College in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where he successfully defended a master's essay entitled "Via Media: Art and Self-Knowledge in Proust's Swann's Way."

Edward Cooper

Gretchen Schrafft

2nd Year PhD Student

More about Gretchen

Gretchen Schrafft's writing has appeared in Carve, Joyland, Hobart, The Rumpus, The Huffington Post, San Francisco magazine, and elsewhere. She earned her MFA from Oregon State University, her MLitt in Creative Writing from the University of St Andrews, and her BA from Middlebury College. She serves on the editorial panel of New England Review and has taught creative writing at Seattle University, Highline College, and Oregon State. She is working on a short story collection and a novel. gretchenschrafft.com

Edward Cooper

Sara Sheiner

2nd Year PhD Student

More about Sara

Sara Slingerland Sheiner is a writer who was raised in the foothills of the Catskills, a place that informs a lot of her work. She received her master’s in poetry at Virginia Tech in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, where she was the winner of the Poetry Society of Virginia Prize, judged by Rachel Zucker, and the Emily Morrison Prize, judged by Dorothea Lasky. In the fall of 2017 she was the writer-in-residence at Randolph College. Her poems can be found in TYPO, The Bennington Review, Muzzle, and other places, including her website at www.sarasheiner.com. Her first manuscript is currently looking for a home.

Elizabeth Layman

Elizabeth Adams

3rd Year PhD Student

More about Elizabeth

Elizabeth Layman is a first year PhD student in Literary Studies. Her research focuses on nineteenth-century American literature, particularly the work of Herman Melville and connections between visual art and literature. She has served as an editorial assistant for Leviathan: A Journal of Melville Studies, the managing editor of Grist: A Journal of the Literary Arts, and has recently presented research at the Eleventh International Melville Society Conference in London.

Kelly Krumrie

Kelly Krumrie

3rd Year PhD Student

More about Kelly

Kelly is a second year PhD student in Creative Writing at the University of Denver, and she holds an MFA from the University of San Francisco. Her work has been published in Black Warrior Review, SHARKPACK Annual, Full Stop, Burning House Press, Sleepingfish, and elsewhere. Links can be found at kellykrumrie.com

Erinrose Mager

Erinrose Mager

3rd Year PhD Student

More about Erinrose

Erinrose Mager is a third year PhD student at the University of Denver. Her recent prose appears in Fence, jubilat, DIAGRAM, wildness, The Adroit Journal, Prelude, and elsewhere. She co-edited The Official Catalog of the Library of Potential Literature (Lit Pub Books) and received her MFA from Washington University in St. Louis.

Bailey Pittenger

Bailey Pittenger

3rd Year PhD Student

More about Bailey

Bailey Pittenger is a PhD candidate in Creative Writing at DU. She earned her BA and MA in English Literature from Wake Forest University, and her MFA in Prose from the University of Notre Dame. Her writing has appeared in Gigantic Sequins, NANO Fiction, Cosmonauts Avenue, and elsewhere. She is from North Carolina. baileympittenger.com

Olivia Tracy

Olivia Tracy

3rd Year PhD Student

More about Olivia

Olivia received her bachelor’s degree from Regis University, where she later returned as affiliate faculty, and completed her master’s degree at Colorado State University, where she was a graduate teaching assistant. Her previous conference presentations and current research interests engage works from many periods and countries, but primarily explore textual representations of global trade, cultural exchange, and colonialism, female nationalist figures, and the environment. She digs for roots (of the behavioral, cultural and beet varieties), obsesses over small details and most flowers, and can almost always successfully operate a jigsaw

esztertakacs

Eszter Takacs

3rd Year PhD Student

More about Eszter

Before coming to DU, Eszter taught creative writing, composition and literature courses for five years at the University of Arkansas, from where she also earned an MFA. During summers she teaches creative writing at Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth and plans to continue doing so indefinitely. She is the author of two chapbooks: Together We Will Talk Right Down to Earth (The New Megaphone) and The Spectacular Crash (H_NGM_N Books). Her poems have appeared in Alice Blue, Soft Blow, Salt Hill, Forklift Ohio, Yalobusha Review, Hobart, Diagram, Prelude, and Inter/rupture. Eszter also paints, takes pictures and translates Hungarian avant-garde and surrealist poetry into English. She was born in Hungary but largely grew up in Los Angeles, where she worked in the luxury car business for six years before pursuing an MFA.

Alicia Wright

Alicia Wright

3rd Year PhD Student

More about Alicia

Alicia Wright is originally from Rome, Georgia. The recipient of fellowships from the Iowa Writers' Workshop, her work appears or is forthcoming in Ecotone, Flag + Void, The Literary Review, Poetry Northwest, The Southeast Review, and Indiana Review as the recipient of the 2016 Poetry Prize, among others. jaliciawright.com

Justin Wymer

Justin Wymer

3rd Year PhD Student

More about Justin

Justin Wymer holds degrees from Harvard University and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. He's received awards and fellowships from Harvard Office for the Arts, the Radcliffe Institute, the Rockefeller Foundation, the Academy of American Poets, and the University of Iowa as well as a continuing education grant from the Spanish Ministry of Culture and Sport and the John Logan Poetry Prize. His work has appeared in Boston Review, Columbia Journal, Conjunctions, Kenyon Review, Lana Turner Journal, Poetry Daily, and elsewhere. He was born and raised in West Virginia. 

vincent_carafano

Vincent James

4th Year PhD Student

Denver Quarterly Fellowship Recipient

More about Vincent

Vincent James is from El Paso, Texas and the father of three kids, Lola, Daisy, and Casper. He earned a BA in Philosophy (NMSU) and received his MA in Literary Studies from DU. Before coming to DU, Vincent owned Spanish Moss, a women's clothing boutique, and worked as a digital marketing consultant. His photography and writing is online at: www.FatherFever.com

 

Brian Laidlaw Profile

Brian Laidlaw

4th Year PhD Student

Fairfield Fellowship Recipient

More about Brian

Brian Laidlaw is a poet-troubadour, and a PhD candidate in Creative Writing (poetry) at DU. His recent releases include The Stuntman from Milkweed Editions, Amoratorium from Paper Darts Press, and Jeremiad (a 7" vinyl single) from Hymie's Vintage Records. He lives in Boulder, where he moonlights - often literally - as a rock climber. News, tour dates, and more information available at www.brianlaidlaw.com.

Alicia Mountain

Alicia Mountain

4th Year PhD Student

Clemens Fellowship Recipient

More about Alicia

Alicia Mountain is the author of "High Ground Coward" (University of Iowa Press, forthcoming spring 2018) which was awarded the 2017 Iowa Poetry Prize. Her poems can be found in Guernica, jubilat, Prairie Schooner, Pleiades, Witness, and elsewhere. She has received a Pushcart Prize nomination, an Idyllwild Arts Fellowship and a residency at the Virginia Center for Creative Arts. She earned her MFA at the University of Montana in Missoula. Alicia's scholarly interests include poetry of the HIV epidemic, queer theory, the 19th and 20th century novel, and African American literature.

Emily Pettit Profile

Emily Pettit

4th Year PhD Student

More about Emily

Emily Pettit is a poet, artist, editor and teacher from Western, Massachusetts. She received her M.F.A. from the University of Iowa Writers Workshop. She has taught and lectured at Columbia University, the University of Iowa, the University of Massachusetts, Elms College, and Smith College. Emily is an editor for Factory Hollow Press and jubilat. Her collection of poems Goat In The Snow was published by Birds LLC . Poems have appeared in The Huffington Post, Academy of American Poetry, Boston Review, Verse Daily, among other journals. www.goatinthesnow.tumblr.com

Emily Pettit Profile

Khadijah Queen

4th Year PhD Student

More about Khadijah

Khadijah Queen (4th year PhD) is an Assistant Professor of Creative Writing at University of Colorado, Boulder and Core Faculty in poetry for the Mile-High MFA at Regis University. She holds a BA in English from University of Maryland and an MFA in Creative Writing from Antioch University Los Angeles, and is the author of five books, most recently I'm So Fine: A List of Famous Men & What I Had On (YesYes Books 2017). Her sixth book, Anodyne, is forthcoming from Tin House Books in August 2020. www.khadijahqueen.com

Emily Pettit Profile

Rowland Saifi

4th Year PhD Student

CAHSS Dean's Fellowship Recipient

More about Rowland

Rowland Saifi grew up in Brazil and Arkansas before attending Naropa University and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Saifi is the author of the novel Lit Windows (Spuyten Duyvil), and the novellas The Minotaur’s Daughter (Spuyten Duyvil) and Karner Blue Estates (Black Lodge). A collaborative novel, Swerve, will be out early 2019 from Astrophil Press. http://www.rowlandsaifi.com/

Dennis Sweeney

Dennis James Sweeney

4th Year PhD Student

CAHSS Dean's Fellowship Recipient

More about Dennis

Dennis James Sweeney's writing has appeared in The Collagist, Crazyhorse, Five Points, Indiana Review, and Passages North, among others. He is the Small Press Editor of Entropy, the recipient of an MFA from Oregon State University, and a recent Fulbright fellow in Malta. www.dennisjamessweeney.com

McCormick Templeman Profile

McCormick Templeman

4th Year PhD Student

More about McCormick

McCormick Templeman is a first year PhD student at the University of Denver. She holds a BA from Reed College and an MFA from Naropa University. A former Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioner, she also holds an MS from AIMC, Berkeley. She is the author of two books from Penguin Random House (The Little Woods, 2012, and The Glass Casket, 2014). Recently her writing has appeared in the YA horror anthology, Slasher Girls and Monster Boys (Dial Press, 2015), and The Los Angeles Review of Books.

Alison Turner Profile

Alison Turner

4th Year PhD Student

Clemens Fellowship Recipient

More about Alison

Alison is a PhD candidate in Literary Studies with many literary interests, including immigrant and refugee fiction in the United States, proletarian literature, and characterizations of poverty. She was born in the mountains of Colorado where she learned to spend large amounts of time outside. When travelling, she insists on visiting public libraries.