Millikin University - Decatur, IL
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The faculty in Millikin's English Department are experts in their fields and interesting, dynamic people. Get to know them.  

Dr. Stephen Frech, Chair
Cindie Zelhart, Office Manager

Dr. Banerjee Dr. Braniger Dr. Brooks  Dr. Cook
Prof. Crowe
Dr. Frech Dr. George Dr. Kirchoff
Dr. Lambert Dr. Magagna Dr. Anne Matthews Dr. O'Conner
       
Prof. Case
Prof. Cox
Dr. Gilpin
Prof. Andy Matthews Prof. Patricio Dr. Zorn

Faculty News

 Dr. Purna Banerjee

Purna Banerjee (Ph.D. Texas Christian University)
Associate Professor of English
Shilling 436
420-6795
pbanerjee@mail.millikin.edu

In the summer of 2005 Dr. Banerjee successfully defended her dissertation, "Incidental Occurrences: Exchanges Between British and Indian Women Writers (1840-1940)." She continues research on intellectual exchange and the Victorian constructions of the female subject. She also has research interest in oral and prose narratives and poems produced by displaced women. She received several teaching awards from Texas Christian University, and teaches courses on international literature and CWRR at Millikin.


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Dr. Carmella Braniger

Carmella Braniger (Ph.D. Oklahoma State University)
Associate Professor of English
Writing Major Director
University Studies Director
Co-advisor, Collage, Millikin's literary magazine
Shilling 415
362-6466 cbraniger@mail.millikin.edu

Dr. Carmella Braniger, a native of Ohio, is a graduate of Muskingum College, Johns Hopkins University, and Oklahoma State University. She directs the University Studies Program and the English Writing Major.  Dr. Braniger teaches creative writing and literature courses and co-advises the undergraduate literary magazine, Collage. Her poems have appeared in Sycamore Review, Poems and Plays, The Dirty Napkin, MARGIE: The American Journal of Poetry, and Modern English Tanka, Eucalypt, red lights, Magnapoets, Atlas Poetica, and many others.  Her chapbook, No One May Follow, was published by Pudding House Publications in 2009. She enjoys collaboratively writing and publishing poetry sequences with fellow English faculty and students.

 


Recently, Dr. Braniger, Dr. Brooks, and Dr. Zhao published a book chapter entitled “Redefining the Undergraduate English Writing Major: An Integrated Approach at a Small Comprehensive University” in the collection What We Are Becoming: Developments in Undergraduate Writing Majors, edited by Greg Giberson and Tom Moriarty and distributed by Utah State University Press. Millikin University’s English Writing Major also received outside national recognition from the National Council of Teachers of English for our curriculum design. In their scholarly article “The Undergraduate Writing Major: What Is It? What Should It Be?,” Deborah Balzhiser and Susan H. McLeod name Millikin’s English Writing Major as one of two top models for intuitions nation-wide.


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Randy Brooks (Ph.D. Purdue University)
Professor of English, Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences
Shilling 209
424-6264
rbrooks@mail.millikin.edu

Dr. Randy Brooks, Professor of English and Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences, received his Ph.D. from Purdue University with a concentration in rhetoric and professional writing. His areas of research include: professional writing curriculum, rhetorical theory, web publishing, book publishing, and Japanese poetry. From 1990 until 2008 he was the director of the English Writing Major, and from 2003-2008 he was the Chair of the English department. He is a proponent of active learning and encourages all Millikin University students to perform their knowledge in public arenas.

He is a nationally recognized leader in curriculum design of English writing programs emphasizing the integration of active learning, community service, technology and publishing. He was the founder of the Media Arts Center at Millikin University, an infrastructure for innovative service learning projects, student computer publishing projects, community internships, publishing client consultations, and other student-centered publications. In 2006 he and Professor Ed Walker, Chair of the Art Department, started Bronze Man Books, a student-run book publishing company located in the Media Arts Center. See the Bronze Man Books web site at: <http://www.bronzemanbooks.com/>.

Dr. Brooks has more than 30 years of literary editing experience and has published more than 70 books, four literary journals, and several literary web sites. In 1998 he was named the Hardy Distinguished Professor of English to conduct research on haiku as a global genre. See the resulting work of his students at the Millikin University Haiku web site: <http://www.millikin.edu/haiku> or enjoy a “Haiku of Day” by Millikin students at:
<http://www.brooksbookshaiku.com/hod>. More than 800 of his poems have been published including a book of selected haiku, School's Out. His essays, workshops and presentations on technical communication, contemporary poetry, computer aided publishing, teaching writing and service learning have been offered on a regular basis at national, regional and local levels.

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Michael Cook (Ph. D. Clemson)
Assistant Professor of English
Shilling 434D
425-4699
mpcook@mail.millikin.edu

Dr. Michael Cook is a native of North Carolina, where he received his undergraduate degree in Secondary English Education from Appalachian State University and his M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction, Secondary English Education from North Carolina State University. He taught high school English for several years in multiple North Carolina school systems. Dr. Cook also earned his Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction, Secondary English Education from Clemson University. At Clemson, he taught both undergraduate and graduate level courses in the School of Education, and his research focused on the reading comprehension of high school students and the use of graphic novels to increase comprehension. Over the previous three years, he has also taught a graduate level, study-abroad course, Integrating Writing and Technology, for N.C. State, based at the University of Surrey in Guildford, England. He is a National Writing Project Fellow and has worked with two NWP sites, the Capital Area Writing Project at NCSU and the Upstate Writing Project at Clemson. Dr. Cook has been published in national journals and has presented his research and work at state, national, and international conferences. At Millikin, he will teach courses within the Secondary English Education track.

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Judi Crowe (M.A., Illinois State University)
Assistant Professor of English
Director, Writing Center
Shilling 434B
424-6274
jcrowe@mail.millikin.edu

Judi Crowe earned degrees from Millikin University (English) and Illinois State University (Writing/Rhetoric) and was an instructor and writing tutor at Richland Community College, Lincoln Land, and Parkland Colleges before joining the English department at Millikin in 1998. She teaches in Millikin’s First Year Writing Program at all levels and serves as Director of the Writing Center as well as coordinator of Summer Writing Assessment and Edge Writing. Judi has also taught literature, horror, and introduction to tutoring courses as well as Edge, and serves as writing project editor in the Masters Program in the School of Nursing. As an undergraduate at MU, she twice won the Grace Patton Conant Writing Awards as well as the Grace Patton Conant Achievement Award and now serves as the Coordinator of the Conant Awards Writing Competition. Judi has taught abroad in London and has been the recipient of the Alpha Lambda Delta Outstanding Teaching Award. Judi’s interests include the horror genre, American outsiders, gender studies, and nonfiction writing.

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Stephen Frech (Ph.D. University of Cincinnati)
Associate Professor of English, Chair of English Department
Co-advisor, Collage, Millikin's literary magazine
Shilling 434E
362-6473
sfrech@mail.millikin.edu


Stephen Frech has earned degrees from Northwestern University, Washington University in St. Louis, and the University of Cincinnati.  He has published three volumes of poetry: Toward Evening and the Day Far Spent (Kent State University Press) won the 1995 Wick Poetry Chapbook Contest, If Not For These Wrinkles of Darkness won the White Pine Press Poetry Prize, published in 2001, and The Dark Villages of Childhood won the 2008 Mississippi Valley Poetry Chapbook Prize.  He has been the recipient of the Elliston Poetry Writing Fellowship, the Milton Center Post-Graduate Writing Fellowship, and grants from the Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation and the Illinois Arts Council. 

 With a love of literature and the visual arts, Dr. Frech founded Oneiros Press to print limited edition, letterpress poetry broadsides, combining poetry and visual image.  Poets printed in the series include Albert Goldbarth, Jane Mead, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Kevin Prufer, and Dan Albergotti.  Oneiros Press broadsides have been purchased by special collections libraries around the world, among them the Newberry Library (Chicago), the Beinecke Library at Yale, and the University of Amsterdam Print Collection.

 

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Michael George (Ph.D. Michigan State University)
Associate Professor of English
Shilling 435
362-6465 
mgeorge@mail.millikin.edu

Mike George teaches a wide range of courses, IN 150/151, science fiction, South Park and American Culture, Social Issues in Rock Music, Senior Writing Portfolio. Although he teaches a wide range of courses, Mike is a medievalist by training and specializes in teaching early literature--Classical Traditions, Shakespeare, Arthurian Tradition, and Medieval Drama. He is currently involved in several research projects that apply ecocriticism to early English literature. He also produces and edits The Guitar Hour with Manley Mallard, which airs at 11:00 (Central) Sunday mornings on Millikin's radio station, 89.5, WJMU.

 
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Jeff Kirchoff
Jeffrey Kirchoff (Ph.D. Bowling Green State University) 
Assistant Professor of English
Shilling 434D
424-6413
jkirchoff@mail.millikin.edu

Dr. Jeff Kirchoff has earned degrees from St. Cloud State University (BA in Creative Writing and Film; MA in English Studies) and Bowling Green State University (PhD in Rhetoric and Writing). Prior to earning his PhD, Dr. Kirchoff directed the Writing Center at the University of Wisconsin-Fox Valley; he has also taught a variety of writing courses for parts of seven years at St. Cloud State University, the University of Wisconsin-Fox Valley, and Bowling Green State University. At Millikin, Dr. Kirchoff teaches courses on composition,writing theory, rhetoric, graphic text, and comic books. His research interests include multimodal composition, the rhetoric of graphic narrative, visual rhetoric, and 21st century literacy studies. He has been published in Studies in Comics, The International Journal of Comic Art, Computers and Composition Online, and Rhizomes,and has presented his research at conferences ranging from Computers and Writing to the National Council of Teachers of English.

 
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Scott Lambert
Scott Lambert (Ph.D., Southern Illinois University)
Assistant Professor of English
Shilling 436
424-5076

Scott Lambert received his Ph.D. from Southern Illinois University in Mass Communications. He worked for 13 years as a sports journalist at small to mid-sized papers across the Midwest. Lambert teaches courses that concentrate on journalism and on writing. Lambert serves as the adviser to the Decaturian, Millikin's student newspaper. His research interests include sports media, media ethics and media history.



Dr. Tony Magagna

Tony Magagna (Ph.D., University of California, Davis)
Assistant Professor of English
Shilling 402B
424-6369
tmagagna@mail.millikin.edu

Dr. Tony R. Magagna joined the Millikin English Department in 2009. He grew up in Southwest Wyoming and earned his undergraduate degree at the University of Wyoming. In 2008, he completed his Ph.D. in English at the University of California-Davis, where he focused his research on modern and contemporary American literature, specializing in the literature and culture of the American West and in issues of space, place, and regional identity in American literature. He has published several articles in the field, and, in 2012-2013, he served as the Fulbright Lecturer in American Studies at the University of Potsdam, Germany. Dr. Magagna teaches various composition and introductory literature classes, as well as a variety of more advanced literature courses, including classes on modern and contemporary American literature (both fiction and drama), American regional literatures, and Native American literature.

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Anne Matthews (Ph.D. Indiana University)
Associate Professor of English & Professional Writing Tutor
Dean of Teaching and Learning
Shilling 434C
420-6691
ammatthews@mail.millikin.edu

Dr. Matthews teaches Critical Writing, Reading, and Research and British literature courses for Millikin. She brings expertise in science and literature, developmental writing, African American literature and writing centers.

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Michael O'Conner (Ph.D., University of Missouri-Columbia)
Associate Professor of English
Shilling 416
424-5096
moconner@mail.millikin.edu

Michael O'Conner earned his Ph.D. in English from the University of Missouri in Columbia. He also earned his Masters degree in Rhetoric and Composition from Mizzou . His B.A. in English is from Central Methodist University. He taught courses in English Language Arts at Washington High School in Washington, Missouri for eight years. He has also taught college English at the University of Missouri, Central Methodist College, and Columbia College. His interests include American literature, film, science fiction, hypertextual theory and writing, composition and rhetoric and popular culture studies.

He is an avid reader of ecological science fiction, a cyclist, and an author of numerous web pages across the internet, including American Literature On-line. He is currently the editor of the new Digital American Literature Anthology, online at digitalamlit.com 

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Adjunct Faculty in the Department of English


 Professor Juli Case

Julialicia Case (M.A. University of California, Davis)
Shilling 321
420-6654
jcase@millikin.edu

Julialicia Case earned a bachelor’s degree in English and Anthropology from Bryn Mawr College and a master’s degree in English and Creative Writing from the University of California-Davis. Her fiction and creative nonfiction have appeared in Willow Springs, Witness, Water-Stone Review, The Pinch, Descant, The Southampton Review, Chautauqua, Carolina Quarterly, and other journals. She has also received several awards including a Fulbright Fellowship to Germany, the University of New Orleans Writing Award for Study Abroad, and a Tennessee Williams Scholarship to the Sewanee Writers’ Conference. She is currently at work on a short story collection and a novel.

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Aubrie Cox
Shilling 402D
420-6795
acox@mail.millikin.edu

Aubrie Cox earned her B.A. in English Writing and Literature at Millikin University in2011, and M.A. in Creative Writing at Ball State University in 2013. Her research and writing interests lie in blending genres and micro-forms, as well as integrating creative writing with composition to teach editing, form, and writer's self-awareness.

Cox has continued her studies and writing in Japanese forms that began in her first year at Millikin University. Her chapbook tea's aftertaste was published by Bronze Man Books in 2011. Additionally her poetry has appeared in journals and magazines including Modern Haiku, Frogpond, Atlas Poetica,and Eucalypt, and has been anthologized in the annual Red Moon Anthology of English-Language Haiku and Take Five: Best Contemporary Tanka. In early 2013, Cox was one of 17 poets included in A New Resonance 8: Emerging Voices in English-Language Haiku from Red Moon Press. She's received a Touchstone Award for individual published poem from The Haiku Foundation, and the Museum of Haiku Literature Award for best published poem in an issue of Frogpond from the Haiku Society of America.

Between teaching and writing, Cox is an editor for the online journal A Hundred Gourds <http://www.ahundredgourds.com> and writes a column for Ripples,Haiku Society of America's newsletter,that focuses on writing aesthetics and techniques via example and analysis.

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Dr. Gilpin
Dr. Gilpin
Dr. Vicky Gilpin (Ph.D. University of Phoenix)
Shilling 321
420-6654
vgilpin@mail.millikin.edu

Dr. Vicky Gilpin has a Bachelor's degree in Theatre and English with teacher certification in both, a Master's degree in Teaching and Learning with a concentration in curriculum and instruction, a doctorate in Educational Leadership, and will receive Master's of Liberal Arts from Harvard University's Extension School with the 2014 approval of her thesis on Varney the Vampyre, a Victorian serial novel.

As well as taking and teaching classes, Vicky Gilpin enjoys publishing and presenting at conferences, particularly the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association. She was previously honored as one of the 2009-2010 class of Emerging Leaders at the Phi Delta Kappa Summit.  A recent work, Fangs in the cornfields: Teaching vampire literature to nontraditional students in the composition classroom, appeared in The Vampire Goes to College. In addition, Dr. Gilpin is editing a collection about humor in works of vampire popular culture

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Andy Matthews (M.A. University of Kansas)
Instructor of English
Shilling 434A
424-3527
dmatthews@mail.millikin.edu

Andy Matthews has a BA in history from Yale and an MA in English from the University of Kansas. At Millikin he has taught a range of courses, including history and literature of the Holocaust.

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Danielle Patricio, native to Decatur, completed both her B.A. and M.A. in English at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff,Arizona. In addition to teaching Critical Writing, Reading, and Research at Millikin, Professor Patricio instructs a variety of Composition courses,Humanities, Creative Writing, and Advertising classes at both Richland Community College and the University of Illinois at Springfield. 

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Dr. G. William Zorn (Ph.D. Western Michigan, MFA Ohio University, BA Eastern Illinois)
Instructor of English
Shilling 434F
424-6245
gzorn@mail.millikin.edu 

Dr. G. William Zorn has earned degrees from Western Michigan University (Ph.D. in English/Creative Writing/Playwriting),Ohio University (MFA in Playwriting), Eastern Illinois University (BA in Theatre) and Illinois Central College (AA in Communication). At Millikin, Dr. Zorn teaches CWRR.  His research interests include Paranormal Theory, LGBT Studies and Drama Therapy. His play, "Metropolis Has No Superman" won the Mark Twain Prize from the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. and is published by Next Stage Press. In addition to playwriting, he is also an award-winning actor, director and dramaturg.

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Cindie Zelhart
Office Manager
SH 402A (English Office)
424-6250
czelhart@mail.millikin.edu

Cindie Zelhart started at Millikin in August 1995 in the Fine Arts Department and spent time in all three of the fine arts areas (Theatre/Dance, Music, Art). She moved to the English Department in August 1996. She is married and has a son and daughter. In her spare time she enjoys reading and spending time in outdoor activities. She is currently working on a B.A. in English literature.

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Millikin University - Decatur, IL
 
Millikin University - Decatur, IL