CV

ASHLEY WELLS

ashley.wells@usu.edu

EDUCATION

California State University, Fresno

Master of Fine Arts, Creative Writing – Nonfiction, May 2012

Thesis: Girls and Horses: An Exploration of Power and Risk

Bachelor of Arts, English,May 2008

Bachelor of Arts, Women’s Studies, May 2008

Magna Cum Laude

QUALIFICATIONS SUMMARY

  • Eleven years of experience teaching at colleges and universities with diverse student populations, including ESL, first-generation, and international students. Extensive experience with first-generation students, including coordinating a first-generation Living Learning Community.
  • Seven years of experience teaching in college writing centers with ESL student populations.
  • Adept at teaching distance learning and online courses.
  • Proven success in writing and editing demonstrated by work as an Editorial Assistant with The Normal School, a nationally distributed literary magazine, and as Communications Project Coordinator with Farm Sanctuary, North America’s largest and most effective farm animal protection organization.
  • Skilled in feminist ethnographic and bibliographic research, as well as writing center research.
  • Areas of teaching ability and interest include: Creative Writing Nonfiction, Rhetoric & Composition, English Literature, First-Year Writing, Creative Writing Fiction, Nature Writing, Feminist & Cultural Studies, Critical Thinking, Introduction to Women’s Studies, and Public Speaking.

TEACHING EXPERIENCE

Faculty Lecturer, Rhetoric Department, University of Iowa, August 2016-present                           

Rhetoric 1030

  • Guide students toward developing speaking, listening, reading, and writing skills.
  • Design course and multi-modal activities aimed at critical thinking, argumentation, information literacy, and reading.

Rhetoric 1040: Writing and Reading

  • Guide students toward critical thinking, reading, and writing skills.
  • Design course to emphasize information literacy, recursive writing, drafting, and revision.

Rhetoric 2070: Persuasive Stories: From Riot Grrrl to Beyoncé (a GE Core Elective in the area of Values and Culture)

  • Developed and designed a course for the Rhetoric and Persuasion minor that examines the persuasive qualities of resistance songs and DIY culture.
  • Guide students through multi-modal assignments aimed at teaching skills in writing and speaking for the web.

Rhetoric 2055: Cowgirl Stories: The Rhetoric of Freedom

  • Proposed and designed a course for the Rhetoric and Persuasion minor that interrogates cowgirl narratives in pop culture.
  • Guide students toward a stronger ability to analyze texts and stake a credible claim.
  • Create and assess short written and oral multi-modal assignments, including websites and podcasts.
  • Adapted this course for online delivery, rotating with the course on resistance songs.

Rhetoric 4980: Special Projects for Undergraduates (Fall 2019)

  • Developed an independent study course to hone writing and speaking for the web.

Rhetoric 1000: For the Birds: Learning from the Rhetoric of Raptors

  • Developed and designed a first-year seminar focusing on the rhetoric of raptors and conservation.
  • Provide experiential learning opportunities for first-year students, such as museum visits, author talks, and a presentation by a raptor educator.

Writing Center

  • Acted as Summer Co-Director for two years (2018, 2019) and Summer Director for one (2020).
  • Work with undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in ongoing weekly appointments. 
  • Lead the Rhetoric Writing Studio to support summer school students taking Rhetoric courses.
  • Coordinate writing center research.
  • Completed Teaching in a Writing Center course.

Instructor, English Department, Kirkwood Community College, August 2013-2016                       

Writing Center

  • Assisted and guided students through various stages of drafting and revision.
  • Aided students in developing and strengthening ideas and research.
  • Offered productive feedback on a wide range of writing assignments.

Elements of Writing

  • Developed syllabus and curriculum guiding students toward an understanding of writing techniques.
  • Assisted students in improving critical thinking skills, reading and writing strategies, and fluency in a number of writing situations.
  • Adapted the course for a distance learning format, reaching several centers across the state.

English Composition I

  • Created syllabus and curriculum introducing students to critical thinking skills, reading and writing strategies, and writing as a process.
  • Aided students in developing a stronger understanding of invention, thesis development, generating rough drafts, audience, revision, editing, and working within a writing community.
  • Designed in-class activities, essay prompts, and free-writes; provided close feedback on all essays, journal responses, and class work.
  • Adapted the course for an online format.

English Composition II

  • Developed syllabus and curriculum guiding students toward a deeper understanding of rhetorical analysis, research, critical thinking, and reading and writing strategies.
  • Created essay assignments, free-writes, and in-class workshops; provided close feedback on all student writing and activities. 
  • Assisted students in developing effective and ethical arguments. 

Forms of Literature: Fiction

  • Designed syllabus and curriculum aimed at providing students with an understanding of literary fiction, including the larger historical, social, and cultural contexts surrounding the genre.
  • Analyzed dominant features and craft choices while developing close reading skills.
  • Assisted students in exploring elements of literary fiction through craft responses, in-class writing prompts, and essay assignments.

Forms of Literature: Nonfiction

  • Developed curriculum aimed at providing students with an introduction to literary nonfiction, including literary journalism, nature writing, lyric essay, memoir, and personal essay.
  • Guided students toward vocabulary to critically engage with structure and form of literary nonfiction.
  • Offered close feedback on student responses and literary analyses.
  • Adapted the course for a distance learning format, reaching several centers across the state.

Instructor, English Department, Iowa Wesleyan University, August 2015-2016                                 

English 100: Fundamentals of English

  • Crafted syllabus and curriculum guiding students toward effective reading and writing practices.
  • Offered close feedback on all writing and drafting.
  • Assisted students in sentence and paragraph development, establishing voice, and developing ideas.

English 105: College Composition & Research

  • Guided students toward an understanding of varied writing situations, particularly conducting college level research.
  • Assisted students in developing effective communication and critical thinking skills while practicing civic engagement.

Communications 147: Introduction to Public Speaking

  • Developed syllabus and curriculum aimed at teaching important communication and presentation skills.
  • Provided close feedback on all student performances.

English 201: Writing & Research about Literature

  • Developed syllabus and curriculum introducing students to various genres, including fiction, nonfiction, drama, and poetry.
  • Aided students in close reading and analysis of literature.
  • Assisted students in researching and synthesizing arguments and ideas.

Lecturer, English Department, Cornell College, October 2014-December 2014

English 111: Literature, Film, and Cultural Studies

  • Designed coursework focusing on the blurred boundaries of nonfiction.
  • Guided students toward an understanding of critical thinking, writing strategies, academic literacy, and revision as a process.
  • Provided close feedback on all student writing and activities.

Lecturer, Women’s Studies Department, California State University, Fresno, August 2012-May 2013

Critical Thinking: Gender Issues

  • Designed syllabus and curriculum introducing students to critical thinking and arguments surrounding issues of gender, race, and class.
  • Assisted students in writing effectively, critical thinking and analysis, incorporating feminist theoretical perspectives in problem solving, and research methodologies.
  • Explored important intersections of gender, race, and class while distinguishing between argument and evidence.
  • Developed writing prompts, exams, and in-class activities; evaluated student writing and responses.

Introduction to Women’s Studies

  • Designed syllabus and curriculum aimed at providing students with an awareness of political, social, cultural, and economic forces contributing to constructions of gender in society.
  • Explored ways in which social categories of race, ethnicity, class, sexuality, and nationality intersect with gender.
  • Examined how gender systems shape everyday experiences and understandings of contemporary issues, particularly with regard to politics of the body.
  • Created exams, prompts, and in-class activities centered on feminist scholarship and critical thinking; provided close feedback on all student work.

Teaching Associate, English Department,California State University, Fresno, August 2009-May 2012

English 5A: Academic Literacy I

  • Developed syllabus and curriculum to introduce reading and writing strategies, approaches to purposeful summary, critical thinking, and rhetorical analysis.
  • Encouraged community participation through workshops, revision exercises, and peer editing.
  • Created in-class writing activities, essay projects, and journal assignments aimed at improving language coherence and generating effective writing.

English 5B: Academic Literacy II

  • Created syllabus and curriculum guiding students toward improved reading and writing strategies, research methods, quote integration, revision, and reflection.
  • Assisted students in performing research and entering larger academic conversations through in-class activities and essay projects.
  • Facilitated writing workshops and provided close feedback on student writing.

Creative Writing Nonfiction

  • Designed a course that closely studied a range of nonfiction subgenres, including memoir, personal essay, literary journalism, nature writing, and experimental nonfiction.
  • Guided students toward the development of creative writing techniques, such as the use of concrete detail, scene, character, tone, setting, dialogue, etc.
  • Facilitated in-depth workshops and aided in revision of student work.

Instructor, Health Careers Opportunity Program, California State University, Fresno, June-August 2010

English Composition

  • Developed summer course aimed at preparing students from disadvantaged backgrounds for their college careers.
  • Created in-class writing assignments and activities to introduce reading and writing strategies, reflective writing, revision, university culture, and community participation.

UNIVERSITY, COLLEGE, DEPARTMENT SERVICE

  • Outreach and Donors Committee, August 2016-May 2017
  • First-Generation Task Force, August 2016-present
  • Academic Curriculum Committee, January 2017-May 2017
  • Hancher Auditorium Embracing Complexity Steering Committee, May 2017-May 2019
  • Rhetoric Minor Committee, August 2017-May 2018
  • Executive Committee (an appointed position), August 2017-August 2019
  • Colloquium Committee, August 2017-May 2018
  • TA Hiring Officer, January 2018-present
  • First-Generation Faculty and Staff Network Coordination (a sub-committee), March 2018
  • Excelling@Iowa Leadership Team, July 2018-present
  • National First-Generation Celebration Communications Committee (a sub-committee), August 2018-November 2018
  • Professional Guidance Committee, August 2018-May 2019
  • Professional Development Program Committee, August 2018-present
  • Colloquium Committee Chair, August 2018-present
  • First-Generation Living Learning Community Co-organizer, September 2018-present
  • Challenge Grant Proposal Committee (sub-committee), December 2018-January 2019
  • One Day for Iowa Creative Group, March 2019-April 2019
  • First-Generation Celebration Planning Committee (a sub-committee), May 2019-present
  • CCCCs Certificate in Excellence Committee (a sub-committee), August 2019-present
  • Core Committee, August 2019-present

ACADEMIC CONFERENCES, PUBLICATIONS, AND PRESENTATIONS

  • The Cowgirl and Her Horses: A Revision, memoir published with Lantern Books, October 2020
  • “Creating a Conduit to the Academic Commonplace for First-Generation Students Enrolled in an Introductory Rhetoric Course,” presentation accepted for CCCC Convention, March 2020 *conference cancelled due to coronavirus
  • “Faculty Panel on Supporting First-Gen Students,” University of Iowa First-Generation Task Force Meeting, March 12, 2020
  • “Teaching Archival Assignments,” University of Iowa Colloquium, February 21, 2020
  • College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Collegiate Teaching Award Nominee, January 2020
  • “First-Generation Experiences,” University of Iowa Conversation Center Training, January 2020
  • “Awash,” a reading at Tin House Writer’s Workshop, July 2019
  • “Teacher & Writer: Finding Reciprocity,” North American Review Conference, April 2019
  • “Teaching Cowgirl Stories: The Rhetoric of Freedom,” Living with Animals Conference, March 2019
  • “You@UI: Being First-Gen@Iowa,” University of Iowa, October 2018
  • “Making a Minor Course,” University of Iowa Rhetoric Department Colloquium, April 2018
  • “First-Generation Rhetoric Instructors—Here to Hear,” University of Iowa “I’m the First” First-Generation Summit, April 2018
  • “First-Generation Experiences,” University of Iowa Conversation Center Training, March 2018
  • “Embracing Complexity: Rhetoric of Identities & Communities, University of Iowa Rhetoric Department Colloquium, September 2017
  • “Negotiating the Personal with Writing Center Students,” Iowa Writing Center Consortium, April 7, 2017
  • “What I Don’t Teach” in Women in Higher Education, January 2015
  • “Matter” in Connotation Press, October 2014
  • “Reconnecting” at Bread Loaf Orion Environmental Writers’ Conference, June 2014
  • “I Learned about Feminism from American Girl’s Felicity” on Jezebel.com, March 2013
  • Cowgirl Narratives 16-post guest blog series with Bitch magazine, February-May 2013
  • “A Pledge” at the Graduate Research and Creative Activities Symposium, May 2012
  • “The Fall” in Connotation Press, March 2012
  • “The Fall” and “Discovering Instinct” at Rogue Performance Festival, March 2011, 2012
  • “Matter” at Tin House Writer’s Workshop, July 2011

MEDIA CONTRIBUTIONS

  • Iowa Magazine, March 2019
  • Daily Iowan, December 2018
  • Daily Iowan TV, December 2018
  • Archives Symposium Interview, February 2018

OTHER RELATED EXPERIENCE

Writing Personal Essays with Substance, workshop led by Lilly Dancyger through Catapult, June-July 2020

Unlocking Tough Stories,workshop lead by writer Katherine Standefer through Catapult, May-June 2020

Authors Guild, member, February 2020-present

Tin House Writer’s Workshop, July 2019

Iota Writing Workshop: Writing Social Justice, December 2018

Department of Corrective Services (DCS) Sixth Judicial District Diversity Committee, volunteer, November 2018-May 2019

Invited Lecture,Counseling and Related Fields, University of Iowa, Fall 2016

Raptology, volunteer, 2016-present

Association of Writers & Writing Programs Conference (AWP), April 2015-present

Invited Lecture, “Animal Ethics,” Ethics in Human Relations and Counseling, University of Iowa, Spring 2015

Bread Loaf Orion Environmental Writers’ Workshop, June 2014

Communications Project Coordinator, Farm Sanctuary, June 2013-July 2014

Tin House Writer’s Workshop, July 2011

Editorial Assistant, The Normal School Magazine, August 2010-May 2012