Call for Urban Fellows at GSU: Info Session 3/21, Apps Due 4/9

See the call below for Urban Fellows at GSU for the next academic year. Graduate students from any department can apply, and this would be a great opportunity if you are interested in studying issues related to cities, urban development, Atlanta studies, or place-based studies. Contact Karen Johnston (see info below) with questions. ~Ashley Holmes

Attention Graduate Students – Call for Urban Fellows for 2018-2019 Academic Year – Graduate Students From All Departments Welcome to Apply

Are you interested in:

·         Developing an understanding of the many problems and challenges that cities face through research, readings, course lectures, and site visits?

·         How to evaluate the many interconnected factors and policies that create these problems and challenges?

·         The advantages of comparative analysis to find solutions to the problems that cities face?

·         Developing a deep understanding of a particular urban issue of interest through researching and writing?

·         A possible opportunity to publish your Urban Fellows research paper in the Journal of Comparative Urban Law and Policy?

 Come to the Urban Fellows Information Session Wednesday, March 21 from 12-1 p.m. in Room
345 of the College of Law at 85 Park Place.
  In this session, you will learn more about the urban fellows program (goals, course structure, requirements, etc).  You will also hear presentations by current urban fellows about their research paper topics.  Lunch will be served.

 Application Process to be an Urban Fellow:  Fillout attached application, and email it back to Karen Johnston atkjohnston3@gsu.eduby April 9th at midnight. The program is open to all graduate students.

 What is the Urban Fellows Program?  Healthy cities, sustainable cities, equitable cities, resilient cities, smart cities – what do these buzz words really mean?  What challenges do cities face in trying to achieve these goals?  How are other cities tackling these problems and challenges?  Answering these and other related questions are central tenets of the Urban Fellows Program, a year-long course comprised of lectures, hands-on learning experiences, and research and writing.  Students participating in the course are required to write a 25 page research paper due in the spring semester; select Urban Fellows papers will be published in the Journal of Comparative Urban Law & Policy.  Students who successfully complete this program will be awarded a certificate.  This interdisciplinary program is run by the College of Law’s Center for the Comparative Study of Metropolitan Growth; top graduate students are selected from across Georgia State University and Georgia Institute of Technology School of City and Regional Planning to participate.

 Topics generally covered in the lecture series include:  sustainability; resilient cities; smart city initiatives; environmental and natural resources; basic city services, infrastructure, and transportation; racial and social equality; fair and affordable housing; land use; health.

 Class Meetings: 
This class will meet Wednesdays from 4:10-5:30 p.m. in both the fall and spring semesters (Changes underway!  I am working on revamping the program to limit lectures to the Wednesday afternoon time slot; historically, there have been lunch lectures as well.
  Currently this is a 2 credit hour class, and does not meet every Wednesday but as scheduled).

Karen Johnston

Assistant Director, Center for the Comparative Study of Metropolitan Growth

Managing Editor, Journal of Comparative Urban Law and Policy –

Georgia State University College of Law

Phone:  404-413-9175



Congratulations to all the presenters and attendees who represented GSU at the 2018 Southeastern Writing Center Association (SWCA) Conference! SWCA was February 22-24 at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, VA, where we had a number of GSU graduate students and two undergraduates presenting their research.







Below is a listing of presentations with GSU presenters. Congrats, all!

Growing Pains: Learning to (Hopefully More Than Just) Tolerate Technological Tutoring

  • Meagan Malone, Kathryn Dean, David St. John, Jennifer Carter, Caitlin Creson, and Jay Shelat (GSU Alum)

Transition/ Translation: Linguistic Transience for ELL and Multilingual Learners

  • Meagan Malone, David St. John, and Brianny Paulino

A Space for Transitions: Liminal Positions in Writing Centers

  • Nicole Turner, Jennifer Carter, and Caitlin Creson

Mentors and Mentees in Writing Centers: Transitions in Writing from a Solitary Act to Social Activity

  • Kathryn Dean, Brianny Paulino, and Joan Banez

Do You Want to Be Our Partner? Exploring the Benefits and Challenges of Transitioning to Symbiotic Relationships With Other Organizations

  • Brittny Byrom, Alec Prevett, and Nicole Turner

Authority and Role Transitions: Tutors in Peer-Review and Classroom Settings

  • Bowie Hagan, Joan Banez, Shabana Sayeed, and Harlow Schinholzer

Building Bridges Between Generations: Transitions, Exigencies and Institutional Constraints in Writing Center Studies

  • Jessica Rose and Dr. Mary Hocks

Paid P/T Communications Coordinator Position

The Atlanta Bicycle Coalition is hiring!


Job Title

Communications Coordinator


Part-time position: 20 hours/week, $18-22/hour

Start Date

Feb/Mar 2018


Are you equally passionate about the transformative powers of cycling and storytelling? We’re looking for someone like you to help garner support for our advocacy work by creating, editing, and sharing content that is accurate, informative and compelling.

See the complete job ad and information for applying here.

Congratulations to Jen Carter, Newly Appointed Assistant Editor of Kairos

I’d like to take a moment to recognize one of our Ph.D. students at GSU, Jen Carter, who was recently selected as an Assistant Editor for Kairos: A Journal of Rhetoric, Technology, and Pedagogy. The process of choosing new editors is competitive and includes multiple rounds of scrutiny, so this is quite an accomplishment. In the newest issue of the journal, Editor Cheryl Ball welcomes the new set of assistant editors, including Jen, in her “Logging On” feature, linked here and excerpted below:

Congratulations, Jen!

CCCC Kansas City: GSU Happy Hour

Hi everyone,
If you’re planning on attending CCCC in Kansas City in March, join us for a GSU happy hour on Thursday, March 15, 2018 5-7PM. We realize conference schedules are particularly busy this year, but if you can find time, join us at Cleaver and Cork at 1333 Walnut Street, Kansas City, MO 64106.  
Hope you have a great conference!
All best,

Computers & Writing Graduate Research Network (Deadline Apr. 24th)

This is a great opportunity to share your works-in-progress research and/or teaching projects! ~Ashley Holmes
Join us again this year at the annual Graduate Research Network (GRN)!
We are seeking in-process writing and research projects for roundtable discussions at the eighteenth annual Computers & Writing Graduate Research Network on May 24, 2018 at George Mason University, Fairfax, VA. Deadline for submissions (and to apply for Travel Grant funding) is April 24, 2018. 
We also need Discussion Leaders, advertisers/donors, and Ride2CWers! For more information visit our Web site at http://www.gradresearchnetwork.org, or email me (Janice Walker) at
Hope to see you there! 

Graduate Internship Workshop, Feb. 7th 2-4PM

As part of the English Department’s ongoing efforts to prepare our graduate students for diverse employment opportunities, the departments of English and History have organized a Graduate Internship Workshop to be held on Wed., Feb. 7 from 2 to 4 pm in the Troy Moore Library.  The workshop will be led by a panel of four English and History graduate students who have recently completed, or are currently completing, internships with local businesses and non-profit organizations.  Our panelists will discuss how they arranged and/or applied for these internships, what they learned from their experiences, and will offer advice for attendees interested in this path toward graduate student professionalization. 

No RSVP is necessary.  Please consider joining us. 

Writing a Dissertation is Not That Hard, Guest Post by Jessica Estep

When I was a graduate student, I frequently heard stories of English A.B.D.s languishing perpetually in a dissertation purgatory, paralyzed by the weight of their projects. I almost never heard anyone say, “The dissertation took months of hard work, but it was also manageable and even kind of fun.” So, if you’re just starting the process, I am here to tell you just that: the dissertation is totally do-able. And having recently finished my diss (clocking in at just under ten months!), I have some suggestions on how to make the project a little easier:

Know your work habits, and pick a dissertation chair with complementary work habits. My dissertation chair and I communicated our work habits before deciding we would work together. Turns out, we both really like deadlines. That meant that when I promised a chapter by March 1, I sent it on March 1; similarly, when she promised me feedback within two weeks, I actually got it in two weeks. I would have gone crazy with a chair who took a more relaxed approach to advising—whereas you might feel the opposite.

Remember that each dissertation chapter is basically the same length as a seminar paper. Telling myself I was writing five linked seminar papers felt a lot easier than telling myself I was writing a dissertation. By that point, I’d written plenty of seminar papers! When I finished each chapter, I celebrated it the way I would have celebrated the completion of a seminar paper: with a day or two to relax before moving on.

Don’t think of the dissertation as a book. It’s just a dissertation—a stepping stone to completing the Ph.D. In my dissertation defense, my committee and I talked about how I could turn the project into a book—what publishers might be interested, how I could expand the case studies, etc. But until that point, I thought of my committee members as my only audience, and I thought of the dissertation as this really long paper I needed to finish to get my Ph.D….not the monograph that would make me famous in the rhet/comp world. That comes later!

If you can, take some time off from, well, everything to write your dissertation. I know this isn’t feasible for everyone, but I really benefited from taking a semester “off” to write my dissertation. Having to explain to my non-academic friends and family that I was a full-time Dissertation Writer made me treat the project with the same reverence as any other full-time job. An awareness that I was choosing to forgo five months’ income also held me accountable every morning when I shuffled over to my computer and sat down to write. In addition, I had no distractions: no student papers to grade… no emails that “needed” attending… With this focused effort, I probably completed the project in a fraction of the time it would have taken me if I’d stretched it out alongside other work.

Of course, you’ll encounter hurdles in your writing process (my biggest ones were the fatigue and morning sickness of early pregnancy!), but the dissertation horror stories you hear come from loud outliers. Don’t let them scare you. It’s a dissertation, that’s all. All these people did it, so reach out to them if you’re feeling frustrated—but know that you can do it, too.

Photo Credit: Casey Elrod

Jessica Estep received her Ph.D. in Rhetoric and Composition from Georgia State University in December 2017. She is an Assistant Professor of English at Georgia Gwinnett College.



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