Hi! My name is Clare Foland, and I am a PhD candidate in English at NIU. I am writing my dissertation on the role of cars in Twentieth Century American Fiction, and I am illogically happy about my ideas, especially considering my time constraints. I’m sure all of you reading this are busy, too.
Part of what keeps me busy is working as a GA in the Thesis and Dissertation office of the Graduate School along with Mike (see below). We are really excited to put new services in place for all graduate students at NIU and to share ideas that will help in the writing of our ETDs. (Check out our website if you aren’t familiar with the acronym “ETD”! http://www.grad.niu.edu/grad/thesis/index.shtml.)
I’ve learned a great deal about ETDs while working in this position, and this information helps to keep me focused on writing my dissertation; our goal in this office is to share good ideas in a community of support.
Outside of NIU, I teach composition courses at COD and a grammar course at AU. I am married with two kids, and, if I have any spare time, I ride my prized possession, a Giant bike (literally, the brand is called “Giant”).
I could go on, but I have writing to do, so see you next post!
Hello! My name is Mike and I am one of the graduate assistants in the Thesis and Dissertation Office.
I am a PhD candidate in the English department and I am writing my dissertation on the modernist American writer John Dos Passos. One of the reasons why I chose to write about Dos Passos is because in spite of the fact that he was a leading literary voice during the 1920s and 1930s, he has been forgotten by critics and academics. I am hoping to offer a fresh perspective of Dos Passos’s fiction in order to rekindle interest in his work. The other reason I am enjoying writing about Dos Passos is that he and I share a similar background – we may have been born in the United States, but we both grew up in Belgium.
I have been working on my dissertation for a while now and I am happy to report that I am halfway through the work, though at times it does feel as though the end is nowhere in sight.
In addition to my responsibilities in the Thesis and Dissertation Office, I am an adjunct professor – I teach First Year Composition I and II – and I am single parent. Other than all of that, there’s not much else to tell you except . . . I must confess that I am addicted to coffee, PBS, and British television programming.