English Department Opportunities | Department of English

English Department Opportunities

The UNCG English Department offers graduate students opportunities to serve, share their work, gain teaching and professional experience, and build community with other students and faculty. While some of the following opportunities are reserved for specific groups, such as teaching assistants or MFA students, most are available for any graduate student within the department, and some opportunities may also be available to lecturers in the department.

For more information on the M.A. and Ph.D. programs, please contact Dr. Jennifer Feather, the Director of Graduate Studies, at jennifer_feather@uncg.edu or Ms. Alyson Everhart, Administrative Assistant to Graduate Studies in English, at awfrazie@uncg.edu.

For more information on the M.F.A. program, please contact Mr. Terry Kennedy, the Director of the Creative Writing Program, a tlkenned@uncg.edu.


Teaching Assistantships

Incoming students who receive teaching assistantships have the opportunity to teach a wide range of courses for the English Department, including College Writing I (ENG 101), as well 100 and 200 level literature courses. TAs receive training and a yearly stipend. For more information, please visit the English Teaching Assistantships, Scholarships, and Fellowships webpage.

Graduate Assistantships

In addition to teaching assistantships, there are opportunities for graduate assistantships elsewhere within the English Department, such as the Writing Center and the English Department Office. Graduate assistantships also are available in numerous non-academic departments across campus, including in the Graduate School. These job descriptions vary, but GAs are offered a stipend for their work. For more information about graduate assistantships, please visit the Graduate School website.

Summer Writing Center GAship

There are typically two paid summer graduate assistantships available each summer. Writing Center GAs work in the University Writing Center 4 days a week (M-Th) for the duration of summer school (10 weeks).

Summer Teaching Assistantship

Most summers, there are a certain number of paid teaching assistantships available for second and third-year TAs who wish to teach a summer course. More information about these positions is sent out towards the end of fall semester/beginning of spring semester.


Lenses: Perspectives on Literature

Lenses: Perspectives on Literature (Lenses) is developed every two to three years for the College Writing Program by its TAs and lecturers. Lenses is designed as a supportive text for entry-level literature courses, as it provides an introduction to literary concepts and theoretical approaches to literature, as well as a compilation of literary texts. Co-editors are appointed to reconceptualize the aim and scope of the textbook; collect essays from contributors; revise, copyedit, and proofread submitted essays in manuscript and proof versions; and work with the publisher to produce the final textbook. They receive a stipend for this work. Additionally, writing for Lenses as a contributing author provides TAs and lecturers with publication opportunities.

Rhetorical Approaches to College Writing (RACW)

Rhetorical Approaches to College Writing (RACW) is developed each year for the College Writing Program by its TAs and lecturers. Every year, three TAs are appointed as editors to supervise the revision and updating process for producing the next edition of RACW, and they receive a stipend for this work. Writing for RACW also provides TAs and lecturers with publication opportunities. The production of a new edition of RACW every year ensures that relevant and pertinent information is always included for instructors and students, giving writers opportunities to discuss exciting advancements in the discipline.

The Greensboro Review

The Greensboro Review is a local literary magazine with an international reputation, comprised of fiction, poetry, and creative non-fiction. Each year, MFA graduate students in poetry and fiction are appointed as graduate editors. As the Review is published out of UNCG, graduate editors work alongside faculty editors to publish two copies per year–one in the spring, and one in the fall. For more information on the Review, please visit The Greensboro Review webpage. For more information about editorships, please contact Terry Kennedy at tlkenned@uncg.edu.


English Department Outstanding Teaching Award

This annual monetary award is given to outstanding graduate teaching assistants who have taught English courses at UNCG and who have participated in the mandatory TA training arranged by the Graduate School. TAs who are interested in applying for this award must compile a nomination letter; a letter seconding the nomination; an evaluation of the nominee’s teaching; and a teaching portfolio that includes a statement of teaching philosophy, methods, and syllabus or syllabi.

Graduate Student Essay Contest

The Graduate Student Essay Contest is an annual competition open to all students enrolled in a graduate degree program in the English Department. Those students who wish to enter the contest may submit a critical or scholarly essay written for a course at UNCG during a specified period of time. There is a monetary prize for the winner of the contest.

The Cloninger-Stout Family Scholarship

In 2007 Amelia Cloninger Stout and Charles William Cloninger, Jr., established the Cloninger-Stout Family Scholarship to honor the memory of their mother, Helen Boren Cloninger Kiser, who attended UNCG (then North Carolina College for Women) in the 1920s. The donors believe education leads to happiness, personal good fortune, and well-being. The Cloninger-Stout Family Scholarship is awarded in alternating years to a graduate student in the MFA and PhD Programs in English with the two programs having their own descriptions and criteria for the award. Nominees for this award should be in excellent academic standing and show a strong record of service to the program, department, university, and/or surrounding community.

The Jim Evans Award for Graduate Service

Jim Evans was a distinguished UNCG professor from 1971 to 2016. The Jim Evans Award for Graduate Service is awarded to one MA or PhD student who exhibits a commitment to outstanding service to the department. A range of service activities that foster a nurturing academic community within the department qualify for this monetary award. In some cases, the award can be divided among two equally qualified recipients.

Keith Cushman Graduate Prize for Publications

Keith Cushman, a leading American D. H. Lawrence scholar, was a professor at UNCG from 1976 through 2014. He wrote or edited seven books; published several dozen essays concerning Lawrence and other writers; and won many distinguished awards, including two Fulbrights. All MA and PhD students from UNCG’s English Department are invited to compete for this annual award. Depending on the availability of funds, the Department grants this monetary award to a graduate student whose scholarly article has been published or has been accepted for publication in a well-established, peer-reviewed journal during a specified period of time. Preference is given to articles coming out in academic journals available not only online but also in print.

RACW/Lenses Travel Award

Thanks to funds from the sale of textbooks produced and edited by members of the English Department, Lenses and Rhetorical Approaches to College Writing, competitive travel grants are available for graduate students and lecturers who have taught 100-level classes in the Department. These funds can be used for activities such as conference presentations, invited readings or other invited presentations, or approved research travel expenses.


English Graduate Student Association (EGSA)

Each year, four appointed EGSA officers are responsible for maintaining the English Department’s dedication to an environment that motivates its students to grow both professionally and personally. Officers are encouraged to plan events that enrich both of these important aspects of graduate student life. The EGSA officers are responsible for planning, organizing, and hosting the annual graduate student conference. Officers also reach out to faculty and advanced graduate students to lead department brown bag lunches, as well as a wide rage of workshops covering topics such as dissertations writing, publishing, and navigating the job market. Along with organizing social gatherings for the department, other leadership duties include stocking the EGSA Honor Pantry and distributing good luck cards to our students preparing for comprehensive exams. Officers are also encouraged to develop relationships with other graduate student organizations from other disciplines across campus. For more information, please contact The Director of Graduate Studies, Dr. Jennifer Feather, at Jennifer_Feather@uncg.edu.

English Department Graduate Studies Committee

Each year, one MA and one PhD student from the English Department volunteer to serve on the English Department Graduate Studies Committee. Serving on this committee provides graduate students with valuable exposure to the type of administrative duties that faculty often engage in, while allowing students to meet and interact with a range of faculty from the department. As either the MA or PhD program’s representative, members are asked to serve as the voice of their program during decision-making processes.

EGSA Conference (presenting, volunteering)

Each year, the four EGSA officers organize and run a conference showcasing graduate work. Graduate students from a diverse range of disciplines are invited to present their research at the annual EGSA Graduate Student Conference. Students are also encouraged to further participate in the conference by moderating panels and performing other volunteer duties. The EGSA conference is a great way for students to share their scholarly work, while showing that they value leadership and collaboration.

College Writing Program (CWP) Committees

Below are a number of committees designed for TAs and lecturers working in the College Writing Program. The focus and number of committees varies from year to year. For more information on these committees, please contact Dr. Risa Applegarth at Risa_Applegarth@uncg.edu.

Teacher Resources Committee

This committee facilitates and solicits new materials for the CWP Canvas page which holds assignments, activities, readings, and other documents which have been shared for use throughout the program.

College Writing Program Website Committee

The CWP Website Committee is tasked with cultivating and expanding the College Writing Program’s presence within digital spaces. No advanced technical knowledge is required. Duties include updating and maintaining existing CWP web pages and generating new CWP web pages, among others. Most importantly, the Website Committee is responsible for highlighting what the English Department has to offer potential students interested in the program.

Portfolio Assessment Committee

This committee is responsible for ensuring the continued efficacy of the ENG 101 Final Portfolio, the capstone assignment for all College Writing I courses in our program. This committee guarantees the validity of the assignment by scoring a representative sampling of portfolios sourced from previous ENG 101 sections. The Portfolio Assessment Committee is also tasked with recommending any revisions to the assignment that they deem necessary.

ENG 101 Revisioning Committee

This committee implements the necessary changes to the ENG 101 Final Portfolio recommended by the Portfolio Assessment Committee. This committee is also responsible for adapting the policies of ENG 101 such that they remain consistent with the goals of the department. The ENG 101 Revisioning Committee proposes recommended changes to the voting body of the TA/Lecturer Advisory Council.


English Department Professionalization Opportunities

Throughout the semester, faculty members, lecturers, and TAs offer a variety of professional and academic development workshops. Types of workshops include CV/resume construction, effective grading practices, writing consultant strategies, mock interviews and conferences, and leadership building. Many of these workshops and professionalization opportunities are also sponsored by the College Writing Program and the English Department Job Placement Coordinators.

Teaching Internship in English

This internship introduces graduate students to college teaching, usually in lower division courses (100- and sometimes 200-level). Internships are designed as working with or under a mentor, not as team-teaching experiences. Accordingly, interns are expected to teach under direct supervision of the faculty member in charge of the class, with no more than one class taken by the student in the absence of the supervising faculty member. For more information about graduate teaching opportunities in English, please visit the English Teaching Opportunities webpage.

Writing Center Graduate Assistant Director (WC GAD)

The Graduate ADs of the University Writing Center have the opportunity to work for the entire academic year with the WC directors to train staff, mentor other students, learn about the administration of 70+ person organization, and be an important part of an energetic community of fellow writers. This is an opportunity to learn about administration and to pursue a writing center-related project tailored to the graduate AD’s interests. The WC AD position is 10 hours per week for the entire academic year, and as such, comes with a one-course release, which can be taken in either the Fall or the Spring semester. Contact Jennifer Whitaker for more information: jlwhitak@uncg.edu.

College Writing Program Assistant Director (CWP AD)

The Assistant Director serves as the assistant to the Writing Program Administrator (WPA), aiding with communication within the program, the yearly new TA Orientation, Advisory Council Meetings, Scheduling, Assisting with instruction in ENG 747, and many other administrative and program-related tasks. Additionally, the AD is responsible for learning the College Writing Program guidelines and policies; for understanding and providing insight to the WPA about program development; and understanding the current state and future development of the program given fiscal constraints, university policies and/or changes, etc. The AD also serves as the TAs liaison–a familiar graduate student to contact with questions concerning teaching, the program, the department, and more. The position is chosen upon application to the WPA. The AD serves for one academic year, and the position comes with one course release. Contact Dr. Risa Applegarth for more information:Risa_Applegarth@uncg.edu.

Teaching Writing TA Bootcamp (August)

This intensive series of workshops, tutorials, presentations, and informal discussions provides invaluable information and opportunities for networking for incoming TAs and lecturers. For one week in August, seasoned faculty prepare new teachers for the upcoming semester. This event also welcomes new teachers to begin establishing relationships with their colleagues and mentors–relationships that will serve to support and motivate them throughout the duration of their time in the program. The Bootcamp is required for all incoming TAs and lectures.

Teaching Literature TA Bootcamp (August)

Each August, an English faculty member leads a multi-day training and workshop series designed to prepare TAs who will be teaching literature courses for the first time. This event includes discussions, presentations, collaboration, and time for TAs to build activities and syllabi for their courses. The Bootcamp is required for all TAs and lecturers who will be teaching literature courses for the first time.

Brown Bags (hosted by the EGSA)

Twice each semester, the EGSA hosts departmental brown bag lunches designed as a forum for faculty and advanced graduate students to share their research with others. These informal sessions provide an opportunity for engaged participants to motivate each other through collaborative feedback. These events provide invaluable practice for scholars preparing to develop their projects, and attendees benefit from exposure to emerging research that speaks to developments in a diverse range of fields.

Women in English (WiE)

Each semester, women from the English department meet to discuss various topics of interest to female faculty and grad students in English studies. Meetings are typically held at the homes of female faculty, and both female faculty and grad students are invited to attend. Contact Dr. Risa Applegarth for more information: Risa_Applegarth@uncg.edu.