When I begin working on a course, I begin with two questions (and these are questions I keep emphasizing to my students when they write too): Who are these people and what do I want to do to them? The "who" for incarcerated students meant that a LOT of them speak AAVE (African American Vernacular English) as their first language (which really impacted the design of the grammar lessons) and many Black or Latino students had not...Read more
By Brian Stevens
Class of 2011
English and Journalism major
Court-Appointed Guardian and Volunteers Coordinator
I graduated from Ashland University in spring, 2011. After a brief stint in direct marketing, I left for South Korea to teach English as a Second Language. I had a wonderful time in Seoul. When I had the chance, I hostel-hopped around Cambodia and Vietnam. After completing just one contract in Korea, however, I returned to the US. I meant to be overseas again soon, specifically Malaysia, even taking TESL classes to boost my application. I found “temporary” work coordinating a volunteer program for a small hospice in Cleveland.
I recruited, trained, assigned, and supervised hospice volunteers. I also had plenty of client visits of my own and quickly learned to love the work. My hospice team was incredible. Their dedication and caring inspired me to take up new direction for my life and stick around Cleveland for a while. I sometimes sat ‘vigil’ with our actively dying patients. Those were strangely peaceful, still nights spent at dimly lit bedsides. I offered whatever comfort I could. Often that meant just being there.
It took a while, but I learned that the only work for me is with people in need. After several years at my “temporary” job, I was offered a position at a much larger hospice. They had no functional volunteer program and meant to change that. With big plans in mind, I established a growing population of qualified volunteers. Barely into my new position, I was suddenly laid off as our programs were rolled back statewide. I had another opportunity to reinvent myself, and I did.
Throughout my short-lived hospice career, I noticed that many of our patients were without family or close friends. They often had a guardian appointed to them, so that they had one...Read more
Faith Edwards, ILA major (English Education grades 7-12) and this years recipient of the Outstanding Junior in English, was recently awarded the Isaac Webb Memorial Scholarship.
Ohio State Reformatory, Mansfield Ohio
The Isaac Webb Scholarship is established by the Board of Trustees of the Ohio State Reformatory Historic Site. Isaac Webb, as an esteemed volunteer and board member, was a former captain of the guards, author, and historian. In his honor, the board awards three scholarships each year to students interested in pursuing higher education in English, history, and/or law enforcement. More information is available here: https://www.mrps.org/learn/isaac-webb-memorial-scholarship.
We asked Faith to tell us more!
Q: What is the scholarship? Why did you decide to apply for it?
Faith Edwards: I received The Isaac Webb Memorial Scholarship through the [nonprofit] Ohio State Reformatory Preservation Society (mrps.org). The committee requested that applicants be pursuing careers in English, history, or law enforcement. As an integrated language arts major, I qualified. Additionally, this scholarship was brought to my attention by Professor Grady in a previous course.
Q: What is it that you look forward to most about being a teacher?
Faith Edwards: In my future classroom, I am looking forward to challenging students to think deeply beyond the surface level and to reconsider their preconceived notions of their world in the past, present, and future. Literature offers an unmatched opportunity for reflection, contemplation, and growth into new ideas that impact the way in which we live. My passion is using English as a tool to help students develop into individuals of strong character, intellectual thought, and concerned citizens.
Q: What have you learned about teaching in the last semester?
Faith Edwards: From my previous experiences with high schoolers, I have learned...Read more
OUTSTANDING HONORS SENIOR CAPSTONES - HOWARD O. ROWE SCHOLARSHIP
The Ashland University Honors Program annually awards the Howard O. Rowe Endowed Scholarship to recognize the top Honors Capstone Project. Dr. Howard O. Rowe was a faculty member in Ashland College’s Education Department who was described as a compassionate teacher and a fine scholar committed to the success of the Honors Program. This scholarship fund was established in 1976 to remember Dr. Rowe’s contributions to Ashland University. This year, three students have been selected to be honored with the Howard O. Rowe award recognizing the quality of their capstone projects.
English major (Creative Writing) Kellie Pleshinger was named one of the three winners!
From the Honors Program blog: Creative Writing/JDM major Kellie Pleshinger’s capstone is titled "Eris Heights: The Search for Truth in a Supernatural-Horror Screenplay and Trailer." Kellie’s mentor, Dr. Maura Grady, writes: “Kellie’s project, the TV pilot script for Eris Heights, is excellent work. . . Eris Heights is tightly plotted but also has engaging characters and a compelling setting. . . . Kellie’s script leaves no detail unconsidered – music cues, character descriptions, and actions are precise and appropriate for her story. The characters jump off the page and tell the casting director exactly what to look for in the actors. . . . [Kellie] has also planned, filmed, and edited a film trailer for the series. Her technical filmmaking skills are on display in the trailer. Producing the trailer is a further step of creation beyond the already first-rate achievement of writing the screenplay.”