Student Profiles

Portrait of Madi Aiman

Madi Aiman

Research Interests: Ecocriticism, Digital Humanities, Climate Fiction, Medieval Literature, Gothic Literature, Indigeneity, and Null Curriculum

photo of Cecilia Curiel

Cecilia Curiel

Research Interests: Environmental humanities, ecocriticism, new materialism, posthumanism, migration and migrant literatures, indigenous and minority literatures
Cecilia graduated from Oregon State University with a degree in English. She has taught English and Literature to university, high school, and middle school students in China. In her free time Cecilia enjoys traveling, hiking, and spending time with her pup; Maguey.


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Lydia Portuo Dompey

Research Interest; Gender representation in literature,Rhetorics,Ecocriticism and The impact and use of language and linguistics for people with disabilities. 

Lydia is an African, from Ghana. She graduated with a degree in English language and literature at the Valley View University.She is passionate about designing creative linguistic  pedagogy to cater for the needs of special people.

My hobbies are cooking,singing, reading novels and chatting with my autistic friends. 

photo of Stephanie Galeana Barreto

Stephanie Galeana Barreto

B.A. in English, San José State University, CA

Research Interests: Latinx Literature, Critical Race Theory, and Gender Studies

Stephanie is a Bay Area native from San Jose, California. She graduated with a degree in English from San José State University. She enjoys hiking with her family and listening to her favorite artist, Taylor Swift.

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Katelyn Hayward

Research interests: Rhetoric in young adult literature, children's and young adult literacy, and the development of relevant English curriculum

Katelyn is a Wyoming native with a passion for learning new things. She earned her B.A. at the University of Wyoming in Secondary Education, English. She enjoys hot drinks on cold and rainy days, reading books inside and outside, learning and bettering her random skills, being outdoors, and teaching. 

portrait of Mark Holm

Mark Holm

Research Interests: semiotics, narratology, linguistics, affect theory, monster theory, and ways in which these intersect.

Mark grew up watching movies and reading on Air Force bases in the US, Japan, and England. After watching Jaws, he decided on a career as a marine biologist but soon chose the drier, safer path of a writer. In addition to receiving his English undergraduate degree from the University of Wyoming, he is an alumni of Writer's Boot Camp, a professional screenwriting organization, and a member of the Semiotic Society of America. He plans to pursue a PhD in Semiotics.

Portrait of Cheyenne Hume

Cheyenne Hume

Research Interests: rhetoric, literacy, English pedagogy, bias in educational literacy, American Sign Language educational literacy, English as a Second Language literacy. 

Cheyenne is not from Cheyenne, WY, but she is from Cody, WY. She earned her degree in Secondary English Education from the University of Wyoming. Cheyenne is passionate about education and has taught various ages in different settings. From teaching, she has felt compelled to further her English education to better understand how English discriminates against minority students and students with disabilities. She plans to use her experience in English to create her own English pedagogy for minority students and students with disabilities. In her free time, you can find Cheyenne curled up with a book, outside with her friends, or gossiping with her two cats Seoul and Mr. Binx. 

portrait of Shifa Ijaz

Shifa Ijaz

Research Interests: the intersection of politics and literature, third-world literature, postcolonial theory, and gender studies.

I studied BS English literature at Government College University Faisalabad where I explored the intersection between politics and fiction. This became my main area of interest. My life in Pakistan shaped my academic interests as I started making sense of third-world reality and reading South Asian authors.

portrait of Makayla Kocher

Makayla Kocher

Research Interests: literacy, cultural literary activities, the impact and use of language and linguistics, rhetoric of children’s and young adult books, public memory and rhetoric of culture, the impact of interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary communication and writing. 

Makayla grew up in Monument, Colorado. She earned her degree in English with minors in Honors, Anthropology, and Museum Studies from the University of Wyoming. She has traveled to Italy and Germany to study art history and display. She has also traveled to Iceland to study Icelandic literacy culture. Needless to say, her educational journey and approach are defined by exploration and experiences. She has a deep passion for experiential opportunities and traveling. In her free time, Makayla enjoys reading, painting, baking, and spending time in the outdoors with family, friends, and her dogs.

Portrait of Natasha Loving

Natasha Loving

BFA in Creative Writing; BS in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Arizona, AZ

Research Interests: ecocriticism, the relationship between anthropocentrism and ecocentrism, queer theory, rhetoric, immersive experiences and the language of fan spaces

Natasha has lived all over, but she calls Goodyear, Arizona home. She graduated from the University of Arizona with degrees in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and Creative Writing. Natasha is fascinated with the relationship between humanity and the natural world. She is passionate about making science accessible through writing, communication, and education that emphasizes approachability and engagement. Her undergraduate honors thesis focused on the relativity and subjectivity of the term "pest" and what the label informs us about the human concepts of power, fragility, and control. Her hobbies include playing tabletop role-playing games, prop-making, miniature building, watching cartoons, baking, cooking, and collecting Buffy the Vampire Slayer memorabilia.

Portrait of Rachel Pak

Rachel Pak

BA in Philosophy, University of California, Riverside, CA

Research Interests: literature and philosophy, intellectual history, novel theory

Originally from Philadelphia, Rachel grew up in the UAE and Kuwait. She studied philosophy at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven before finishing her B.A. at UC Riverside. Her interests include the intersection of philosophy and literature, literary theory, and the novel. She hopes to combine her interests in the history of philosophy and 20th century continental philosophy with the history of literary works and critical approaches to literature. Her current passion is for landscape writing, particularly of the American West.

Portrait of David Riedel

David Riedel

Research Interests: Narrative structures, Affect Theory, Hypernormalization, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Addiction and Recovery, History of the American West, Intersections of Paranormal Events and Pop Culture, Unidentified Areal Phenomena, Intersections of Christianity and Conspiracy Theory

David was born and raised in Bosler, Wy. He will buy you coffee in exchange for you telling him about that completely crazy, unexplainable thing that happened to you that one time. In his free time, he reads, writes, and watches movies of all kinds. Favorite book: The Heart is a Lonely Hunter. Favorite movie: Hedwig and the Angry Inch. Favorite band: Elliott Smith

Portrait of Greg Ronco

Greg Ronco

Research Interests: Irish and Scottish literature, Celtic grief, humor, literature of aging, postcolonial literature

Greg is from Bedford, Massachusetts. He is a writer, audio producer, and teacher, with a background in editing, foreign education, and photography. Greg currently produces The Dead Beat podcast and is an editor for The Meadowlark Review. In a past life, Greg taught English in Ishikawa, Japan and produced the HumaNature podcast at Wyoming Public Media. He most recently completed a thesis manuscript on the tensions of concept and reality in relation to identity emergence. Greg’s primary research interests are the exploration of grief and humor through Irish and Scottish literature, with an added emphasis on their interactions with literature of aging and Celtic storytelling tradition. Greg enjoys traveling, hiking, and reading. He also has a taste for tea, preferably with warm popovers, and more preferably while looking out the window at an autumn lake or rocky coastline.

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Anthony Sandoval

Research Interests: Rhetoric and Composition Education, Narrative as Rhetoric, LGBTQ+ Rhetoric, Media Representation, Pop Culture Studies, and Public Humanities. 

Anthony is a Wyoming native, hailing from the small town of Saratoga just west of the snowy range mountains and Laramie. He earned a bachelor’s in English with a minor in creative writing from the University of Wyoming in the spring of 2022. He loves to talk about all subjects, especially those on all kinds of media studies, which makes teaching one of his favorite things to do! In his free time, he enjoys going to cafes to talk and play board games with friends and playing video games. Anthony hopes to utilize his degree and specializations to break down complex narratives and make them more understandable and available to public audiences.

Portrait of Sydney Schmidt

Sydney Schmidt

Research Interests: Representation of women in literature, cultural studies, and gothic writings

Born and raised in Sheridan, Wyoming, Sydney holds a profound appreciation for small-town communities. While her undergraduate experience allowed her to become an active member of Laramie's community, graduating with her BA in Secondary English Education highlighted the beginning of her academic career. By continuing her education at the University of Wyoming and specializing in public humanities, Sydney hopes to develop a relationship with nonprofit organizations and contribute to the public good.

Portrait of Sarah Wagoner

Sarah Wagoner

BA in English Literature, Chadron State College, NE

Research Interests: Male Gaze Theory, Female Gaze Theory, Critical Race Theory, Queer

Sarah Wagoner is from Scottsbluff, NE. She earned her degree in English Literature with a Minor in Creative Writing at Chadron State College. Through her literature studies, she grew an interest in LGBTQIA+ and gender representation in literature and film. Her undergraduate thesis focused on the subversive use of the male gaze in exploitation films from the 1970s. She has presented the thesis and other papers on transgressive themes at literary conferences. She believes transgressive art has the potential to thoroughly explore trauma and other societal issues. She hopes to deepen her knowledge of literature and feminist/Queer theories.

Contact Us

Department of English - 3353

Master of Arts in English

1000 E. University Ave.

Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: 766-6452


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