Dr. Karyna McGlynn’s “Hothouse” in The New York Times

HothouseHothouse, a book of poetry by Dr. Karyna McGlynn (Literature & Languages), was positively reviewed in the New York Times on August 4 (“Five Poets Offer Eloquent Views of the American Experience”) and was also selected as an Editor’s Choice in the August 10 edition (“9 New Books We Recommend This Week”). According to reviewer Kathleen Rooney, “McGlynn’s first book, the fabulous (and fabulously titled) “I Have to Go Back to 1994 and Kill a Girl,” proved that she belonged squarely in the Gurlesque, a loose group of female poets who — combining the burlesque and the grotesque — approach their femininity in a campy way, skewering gender stereotypes. Now, in her glittery, screwball second collection, McGlynn continues to play with the dark comedy afforded by this girly kitsch.”

Alumni News: Music, Marriage, and More…

Candous Brown Action News 5Candous Brown (MAT ’12) was recently featured on WMC Action News 5 for her creativity in the classroom, remixing the Cardi B rap hit “Bodak Yellow” with lyrics reminding the students about the importance of their final year in high school. Candous (pictured far left) teaches English at Raleigh-Egypt High School.


Brandon Robinson WeddingKären Brandon (English ’09) and Kristopher Robinson celebrated their marriage on October 28, 2017 at Lichterman Nature Center in Memphis, TN. The wedding was officiated by Dr. Tracie Burke (Behavioral Sciences, Honors Program) in a lovely ceremony. Kären and Kris reside in Starkville, Mississippi, where they both work at Mississippi State University.


1x1-W4C-TaylorBlandB2B marketing agency Godfrey has hired Taylor Bland (Applied Psychology ’05) as an account manager. Bland, of Mechanicsburg, PA, most recently worked at Oden & Associates in Memphis, Tennessee, as an account manager. Taylor manages communications programs as Godfrey’s day-to-day interface with clients. Bland has over 10 years of experience in the marketing and advertising world, on both the agency and the client sides. B2B accounts she previously worked with include FedEx and Homewood Suites by Hilton.


Deborah HallDe’Borah Hall (Applied Psychology ’11) recently joined The Arc Mid-South, whose mission is to empower people with intellectual and developmental disabilities to achieve their full potential, as a case manager. The Memphis Daily News published a Q&A with De’Borah, in which she discusses her new position and the lessons she’s learned during her 15 years of experience working in human resources. Per the Daily News, “In her new role, Hall visits The Arc’s clients, who have intellectual and developmental disabilities, in their homes to determine if the organization’s direct support professionals are providing appropriate services such as bathing, feeding and light housekeeping.”


Lauren DahlkeCBU alumna, Lauren Schneck (fomerly Dahlke; Psychology ’16) is lead author of the paper, “Behavioral Therapy: Emotion & Pain, A Common Anatomical Background,” which was published in May in the journal, Neurological Sciences. Schneck co-authored the paper with Dr. Jeff Sable (Associate Professor of Behavioral Sciences) and Dr. Frank Andrasik (Distinguished Professor and Chair of Psychology at the University of Memphis). On May 27, Andrasik gave an invited presentation of the paper at Stresa Headache 2017, an international multidisciplinary seminar in Stresa, Italy. Lauren is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in clinical psychology at the University of Memphis.


John-Austin-Tubbs_1089-200x300John Austin Tubbs (Religion & Philosophy ’15) is currently a Lasallian Volunteer at Cathedral High School in El Paso, TX. He has a featured Q&A in the “Ministry of the Month” on the Lasallian Volunteers website highlighting his service at the school and within the communities of El Paso.



English & Psychology Ranked #2 in Best Value for Small Colleges

Best-Value-Schools-Top-Small-Colleges-2017-1Bestvalueschools.com has ranked The Rosa Deal School of Arts degrees in English and Psychology #2 in best value for small colleges nationwide in 2016-2017. Both programs offer numerous paths of study including English, Creative Writing, English for Corporate Communications, Speech Pathology, and Cognitive Psychology. The programs were recognized for CBU’s low tuition costs, “the broad range of skills” students learn, and for being “a powerful incubator for undergraduate research, encouraging all students to produce original work and share their results with others in order to maintain a thriving intellectual community on campus.”

Khadijah Green Accepted to Summer Writers Institute at Skidmore College

Khadijha GreenKhadijah Green (Creative Writing ’19) has been awarded a scholarship to the Summer Writers Institute at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, NY. Khadijah has been accepted into the two-week poetry workshop led by Peg Boyers. The scholarship winners (58 students – grad and undergrad) come from a wide range of colleges and universities (many are Ivy League); Khadijah will be one of the few to represent the South. This summer program is now in its 31st year and brings in award-winning writers (such as poets Robert Pinsky and Henri Cole, and fiction writers Mary Gaitskill and Joyce Carol Oates) to lead workshops in poetry, nonfiction, and fiction. Check out the awesome line-up of artists.


Maya Freeman To Tour With American Junior Golf Association

Maya FreemanDuring Fall Break, Maya Freeman (ECC ’18) took a Career Road Show trip to Atlanta, GA with CBU’s Career Services. While on this trip, students visited the Atlanta Hawks arena and toured their facilities. “Our guide, Mr. Ben Brown, New Memberships Manager, spoke with us about careers within the sports business industry,” Maya recalls, “and suggested we all look for a summer internship in the sports field. Taking his advice, I searched for internships through teamworkonline.com and applied for at least 20. Among those was a communications intern position for the American Junior Golf Association (AJGA). Once I received word that I made it through the application process, I was invited to their headquarters in Atlanta as a Top 100 Candidate. All candidates were put on teams of ten interns for the weekend and we were evaluated in several areas. After the weekend, I was offered the position as a Communications Intern for the summer. I will travel extensively throughout the United States helping to conduct national junior golf tournaments. I will be on a team of 6-7 other communications and operations interns and travel with a specific itinerary.” As a Tournament Communications Intern, Maya will be responsible for performing all on-site communications and media relations duties at each tournament.

To keep up with Maya’s work, you can follow the AJGA on Twitter and Facebook.

Alumni Making News: Memphis Flyer 20<30, Clinton Foundation, Award Winners & More

coverstory_20under30_p3a3365_michalyneasterMichalyn Easter (History ’13) was selected to The Memphis Flyer’s ”20<30: The Class of 2017,” an annual list of 20 young Memphians who are making a difference. Michalyn is a recipient of a Master of Arts in Teaching degree from Teachers College, Columbia University in New York, and is currently a history teacher at Overton High School. she is the founder of the nonprofit Our Grass Our Roots in North Memphis, an organization designed to inform the community of resources and opportunities, resist gentrification, assist progressive developments, and advance individuals in the Memphis area.

Derrick Brown (MAT ’13) was a recipient of the 2016 SPARK Award, which recognizes individuals and organizations making a difference in our community. Derrick is an instructional resource teacher at Riverview Middle School and the founder and CEO of The Academy Memphis, which serves as an advocate to bridge students with special needs to higher education. The SPARK Award ceremony aired on WKNO on December 12 and is available online.

Kyra Sanchez Clapper (History ’13) recently passed her Comprehensive Exams for her Modern European History doctorate at the University of Memphis, and gave birth to a beautiful baby boy, François Michael Mansour!  Her doctoral dissertation on early French Romanticism and the writings of François-Rene de Chateaubriand builds on her earlier research for her dual Master’s degrees in French and History from the U of M.

Lauren DahlkeLauren Dahlke (Psych ’15), has been awarded a Van Vleet Memorial Doctoral Award at the University of Memphis. This is a university-wide fellowship – the top offered by the University, and two awards were made this year. Each doctoral-granting department nominates candidates, which then compete at the university level.

While at CBU, among other things, Lauren did an extended internship in the Department of Psychology at St. Jude Children’s Hospital and was involved with several studies in the Cognitive Neuroscience Lab. She represented CBU at numerous research conferences, including two international venues–one of which was the 2016 International Symposium on Lasallian Research. Lauren entered the UM Master of Science Program in General Psychology last year, and this year she applied and was accepted to the Ph.D. program in Clinical Psychology. This award is a tremendous honor for Lauren.

Sister Mary Juliana (MSEL ’05), Principal of St. Croix Catholic School in Stillwater, MN, was named Educator of the Year for 2017 by the Greater Stillwater Chamber of Commerce. You can read more about her and her extensive work in the Twin Cities Pioneer Press.

Christopher Peterson (Philosophy ’10) and Dr. Emily Holmes (Religion and Philosophy) co-authored a chapter: “Race, Religion, and Justice: From Privilege to Solidarity in the Mid-South Food Movement” that will be published in Food Justice in US and Global Contexts: Bringing Theory and Practice Together, ed. Ian Werkheiser and Zachary Piso (Springer, 2017).

You can read more about Chris’s thoughts on our food system and his life as a farmer on his blog Farmlosophy and on Loch Holland Farm’s Facebook page.

SaraSwisherHeadshotSara Swisher (English ’16) has been accepted into the Master’s program for Public Service at The University of Arkansas’s Clinton School for Public Service. The Clinton School is the first to offer a Master’s degree in Public Service, and gives students the knowledge and field experience to further their careers in the non-profit, governmental, volunteer, and private sectors. Upon Sara’s entry into the Clinton School, she will complete an international project in the summer of 2018. She is looking forward to this new and unique experience and furthering her career in non-profit management and policy. The Clinton School is a natural step forward from her service as an AmeriCorps Volunteer in Service to America (VISTA) with the City of Memphis, during which she served as a Food Policy Coordinator at Memphis Tilth, which cultivates collective action for an economically sustainable, socially equitable, and environmentally sound local food system. Sara developed the Food Policy Program, one of Memphis Tilth’s seven programs, which has the mission to advance policy and practice within Shelby County and Memphis in order to promote food security and access.

Students Making News: Awards For Scientific Research & Playwriting

Undergraduate ResearchCBU students and alumni presented their research at the National Conference on Undergraduate Research on April 14-16 at the University of Memphis. Theresa Havelka (Psychology ’18) presented “Examining the Link Between Religiosity and Altruistic Behavior of College Students.” Olivia Evans (Psychology ’18) and Brigid Lockard (Psychology ’18) presented “Impression Management and Social Capital on Social Networking Sites: Post like Everyone’s Watching.” Andrea Perez-Munoz (Psychology ’17) and James Rogers (Psychology ’17) presented “N1 to Distractor Tones is Affected by Tone Salience and Primary Task Difficulty,” and Lauren Dahlke (Psychology ’16) and Daniel Gabriel (Natural Science ’16) presented “Emotional Stimuli Reduce Distractibility to Irrelevant Stimuli.” It was an exciting and informative conference with approximately 4000 undergraduate presenters from all over the United States, including a plenary address by FedEx CEO, Fred Smith.

TAS-2017-115Andrea Perez-Muñoz (left), Patrick Woody, and James Rogers (with alum Jamonté Wilson)—all psych majors—won first place in the poster session at the Tennessee Academy of Sciences. Ironically, since there was no submission category for psychology, behavioral sciences, social sciences, or neuroscience, they submitted the poster under the health and medical sciences category.

The study, titled: “Brain responses indicate that task difficulty and distractor salience create competition for attention,” was a project the students initiated in PSYC 372 Psychophysiology in Fall 2015, and have continued to work on. It was supported by the grant CBU received from National Science Foundation to purchase an electroencephalogram.

Joel Moore (English for Corporate Communications ’17) has been admitted to the law school at Suffolk University in Boston, MA, and to Syracuse Law School in New York. Regardless of what school he decides to attend, he plans to study corporate law and go into contracts and intellectual property.

walt_bwWalt Stallings (English ’18) recently received an Audience Award at this year’s Theatre Oxford’s Nat’l 10-Minute Play Contest.  He work-shopped the piece in Dr. Kristian O’Hare’s playwriting class this semester.  Additionally, his play will receive a production (dates TBA), and he also receives a cash award. Not bad for the first play he’s actually ever written!

Peer Awards 1The Rosa Deal School of Arts Language Center and it’s tutors were honored at the Second Annual Peer Educator Awards, Tuesday April  11, 2017. Bruna Colono and Efren Luna received the Tutor of the Year award for 2017. We would like to recognize the hard work of our other tutors, who put in long hours helping their peers master new languages, at the Language Center.

Faculty Making News: Publications & Podcasts

carrierem_pic2Dr. Marius Carriere (History and Political Science) attended the Organization of American Historians conference in New Orleans in April, where he and several other historians were honored as Distinguished Historians.


Federico Gomez-Uroz (Literature and Languages) attended the Tennessee Foreign Language Teaching Association conference for West Tennessee on March 25, where he chaired a session on the use of commercial games in the language classroom. The session was titled, “Using non-serious games in a serious way.” On March 26, he then spoke a panel on the Psychological Benefits of Gaming at Mid-South Cona local convention about Fantasy, Science Fiction, and gaming held each year in Memphis.

EmilyDr. Emily Holmes (Religion and Philosophy) was interviewed by Rev. Broderick Greer, Grace-St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, about her book, Flesh Made Word: Medieval Women Mystics, Writing, and the Incarnation, on December 14. The interview was recorded and broadcast as part of the Theology Live podcast series. Listen to the podcast.

Dr. Holmes and Christopher Peterson (Philosophy ’10) co-authored a chapter: “Race, Religion, and Justice: From Privilege to Solidarity in the Mid-South Food Movement” that will be published in Food Justice in US and Global Contexts: Bringing Theory and Practice Together, ed. Ian Werkheiser and Zachary Piso (Springer, 2017).

Dr. J. Seth Lee (Literature and Languages) gave a paper at the College English Association conference in Hilton Head at the end of March. His paper, “From Early Modern Print to EEBO: (Digital) Early Modern Texts in the 21st Century Classroom,” addressed how we can utilize technology in the classroom to better understand how texts work in both their “original” forms and their digital, 21st century manifestations. More specifically he outlined an assignment using GoogleDocs to create a digital commonplace book that would allow for the creation of a semester-long grand narrative of a course. The assignment offers a place where students can bring together their knowledge from other classes germane to the readings and discussions.

Dr. Rod Vogl (Behavioral Sciences) was quoted in an article in the February 2 edition of The Commercial Appeal, entitled “Healthy relationships, healthy you.” The article dealt with ways to make strong marriages and good friendships even better.

2017 Castings Journal Now Online

Castings 2017 Front Cover_Page_1The Department of Literature and Languages’ annual publication of Castings, which publishes poetry, prose, fine art, and photography of our students is now available online. The 2017 edition was edited by Betty Armstrong (English ’17) and Alex Garry (Creative Writing ’18), and designed by Luis Martinez (Graphic Design ’18). Submissions were judged by the following faculty. Poetry: Dr. Vincent O’Neill, Dr. Ann Marie Wranovix, and Dr. Kristian O’Hare. Prose: Dr. Kelly James, Dr. J. Seth J. Lee, and Dr. Karl Leib. Fine and Visual Art: Jana Travis and Nick Pena.

1st Place_MM IMG_1352Prim and Proper

3rd Place_Birds of a Feather




Fine Art (From left to right)
1st Place: Maritza Mena for “Untitled”
2nd Place: Lauren Jeu for “Prim and Proper”
3rd Place: Lauren Jeu for “Birds of a Feather”

1st_OB untitled7

2nd_Red Eye3rd_Castings (10 of 11)




Photography (From left to right)
1st Place: Olivia Betterton for “Untitled”
2nd Place: Lauren Jeu for “Red Eyes”
3rd Place: Ethan Carpenter for “Untitled”

Short Stories & Prose
1st Place: Alex Garry for “Caesura”
2nd Place: Alex Garry for “What I Wanted”
3rd Place: Olivia Betterton for “Such A Pretty Thing”

1st Place: Alex Garry For “Forgotten Fairytales”
2nd Place: Marissa Anderson for “Hunt”
3rd Place: Betty Armstrong for “Grandpa”

In Memoriam: Dr. Roger Easson

Roger Easson In MemoriamDr. Roger Easson (Literature and Languages, Retired) passed away on Saturday, October 22 at Methodist Hospice. He had been suffering for several years from cancer that was diagnosed five months after he retired from CBU and had recently spread to his bones. He chose palliative care rather than an operation that might have interfered with his ability to breathe on his own and to continue writing. His wife, Kay, and his sister, Joyce, had been with him during his hospice stay.

Dr. Easson began teaching in the School of Arts in 1987 and played a seminal role in establishing the still-popular English for Corporate Communications major, which aims to prepare students for careers in professional writing and also directed the Writing Center for a number of years, and guided students through internships at Memphis-area businesses. He retired from CBU in 2013.

Follow this link to read more about Dr. Easson’s life and career, including testimonial from his colleagues at CBU.

Please keep Dr. Easson and his family in your thoughts and prayers. Donations to help pay for Roger’s medical expenses can be made on his GoFundMe page.