Meet the Staff

Jaclyn Wells, Director

Jaclyn Wells, Director

Jaclyn received a Ph.D. in English (Rhetoric and Composition) from Purdue University in 2010. Her book, Partners in Literacy: A Writing Center Model for Civic Engagement (co-authored with Allen Brizee), describes a three-year engagement project involving the Purdue OWL and two adult literacy organizations in Lafayette, Indiana. Jaci has directed the UWC since 2012. She is SafeZone certified. You can read more about her on the Department of English website.

Fun Facts: To date, Jaclyn has never lost a game of Seinfeld trivia. Her corgi mix, Travis, is Instagram famous.

Brianna Carnley

Brianna Carnley, Program Administrator

Bri graduated from UAB in April 2022. Her major was English with a concentration in creative writing and her minor was Philosophy. Before becoming the Program Administrator, she worked as a tutor for the UWC during her senior year. She plans on taking a gap year (or two) before pursuing her Master’s.

Fun Facts: Bri loves movies, specifically adventure movies! Some of her favorites are The Mummy (1999), The Princess Bride (1987), and Stardust (2007). Every fall/winter, she has to have a Lord of the Rings marathon or else it just doesn’t feel like fall/winter.

Emmett Christolear

Emmett Christolear, Graduate Assistant Director

Emmett Christolear is a second-year graduate student. He earned his BA in English from UAB in 2015. He is a faculty member of the Ada Long Creative Writing Workshop and is a teaching fellow with Desert Island Supply Co. He has acted off-and-on as a session leader for the Alabama Scholastic Press Association and Space One Eleven. His writing has been published in Aura Literary Magazine, Screen Door Review, Rogue Agent, and Black Napkin Press. With a focus on poetry, his writing aims to celebrate the Southern Queer Experience. He is SafeZone certified.

Fun Facts: His dream closet would include a Demin jacket in every color and patterns like animal print, flames, and checkers. This closet would also have a custom-sized Converse-specific shoe shelf full of every color to match.

Maggie Sharp

Maggie Sharp, Graduate Assistant Director

Maggie Sharp is one of the assistant directors of the UWC. She is also a second year English graduate student and teaching assistant. She recently completed her BA in Literature (2021) and a minor in Linguistics at UAB. Outside of tutoring, Maggie loves writing, reading, getting into niche fandoms, and writing fanfiction about said niche fandoms.

Fun Facts: Maggie knows all of the lyrics to songs in Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812, an operatic, techno-pop musical based on seventy pages from Leo Tolstoy's War and Peace.

Mike Boody

Mike Boody, Graduate Tutor

Mike is a graduate student seeking his Master's in English. After receiving his MAEd from UAB in 2013, he served as the Education Director for Red Mountain Park for three years before teaching high school English and Film at Spring Valley School, where he worked primarily with dyslexic students. His passion for teaching is driven by a love of helping reluctant students find a gateway to understanding and enjoying all things English — from expressing themselves through writing to analyzing literature. He lives in Birmingham with his wife, Jessica, basset hounds Izzy and Zoe, and cats Lyle and Butterball.

Fun Facts: Mike has a completely useless talent of spelling words alphabetically (a-a-a-b-c-e-h-i-l-l-l-p-t-y).

Shannon Bradt

Shannon Bradt, Undergraduate Tutor

Shannon is an undergrad (this is her last semester!) at UAB. She is a double-major in English and Philosophy. She attended the Alabama School of Fine Arts for high school as a creative writer, and is finishing what she started there by concentrating in Creative Writing for her English major. She plans on pursuing an MFA in poetry when she graduates (which will be in December! Knock wood).

Fun Facts: The English department sent Shannon to the Longleaf Writer’s Conference in Seaside, Florida this summer and she had a blast! Before she came back to school full-time, she worked at a vet clinic for six years and once assisted with a live puppy birth.

Mason Cosper

Mason Cosper, Undergraduate Tutor

Mason is a transfer student from Wallace State Community College. He is a junior, majoring in Secondary Education with a concentration in literature. He hopes to teach high school for a few years, then return to college to get a Ph.D. in Medieval Literature. Mason is also am planning to visit the United Kingdom to see some locations discussed in medieval literature. He hopes to help contribute to the discussions around old English literature, and to be able to read old English as well. Sir Gawain and The Green Knight is the poem/story that sparked his interest in this type of literature. Mason has received additional training in assisting with multimodal projects.

Fun Facts: Mason loves horror movies, Mike Flannagan ("Haunting of Hill House") is probably his favorite director. He also enjoys trying to write short stories to hopefully create an anthology book one day.

Corey Davidson

Corey Davidson, Undergraduate Tutor

Corey Davidson is a Senior undergraduate at UAB majoring in Genetics and Genomic Sciences with minors in Chemistry and English. After attaining his undergraduate degree, Corey plans on attending medical school and becoming a General Practitioner (while writing all the way, of course). He has always had a knack for writing, and, throughout his undergraduate career, has developed a niche for writing scientific papers such as lab reports and research papers.

Fun Facts: In his free time, Corey enjoys critiquing movies, winning mental arguments against no one, and generally being incapable of having fun no matter how hard he tries. Unless he’s with his cat, Panda, whom he loves with every fiber of his being.

Urnisha Dutta

Urnisha Dutta, Graduate Tutor

Urnisha is a first-year master’s student with a major in English Literature and Language. She completed her bachelor's and master’s program in English Literature in India and is eager to attend a second master's program at UAB. Her concentration is specifically on American Literature in which she plans to pursue a Ph.D. degree later. Urnisha has worked as a senior academic research analyst in India where she supported international students and assisted them in improving their writing skills. She looks forward to helping more students in the future and enabling them to have great academic accomplishments.

Fun Facts: Urnisha can spend the entire day eating potato chips, drinking coffee, and running after neighbors’ pets. She is a connoisseur of music and whenever she is in deep thoughts, she cannot help humming some of her favorites

Kierra Finley

Kierra Finley, Work-Study Tutoring Coordinator

I'm a sophomore from Mobile, AL currently working towards my B.A. in Sociology. Once I graduate, I plan on working at a non-profit organization that focuses on social justice and human rights. In my spare time, I like to listen to music, watch Netflix, and try out new recipes. I also love reading and writing poetry, and I'm currently writing poems to submit to the Poetry Foundation!

Fun Facts: I have hypermobility (double-jointed) in both my shoulder and hip! This means I can pop both in and out of their sockets with ease. I was also born on Friday the 13th with a form of polydactyly so I may or may not be cursed!

Rebecca Foushee

Rebecca Foushee, Adjunct Tutor

Rebecca Foushee graduated from UAB with a B.A. in English Literature and a Creative Writing minor in December 2018 and a M.A. in English in December 2020. Currently, she teaches First Year Composition at UAB. She has contributed poetry, a short story, and an essay to UAB’s Aura Literary Magazine.

Fun Facts: Rebecca is a comedy movie connoisseur and can quote many movies off the top of her head. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her family and her cat, Simba.

Jacob Frazier

Jacob Frazier, Undergraduate Tutor

Jacob Frazier is a sophomore undergraduate majoring in Literature and minoring in Philosophy and Creative Writing. While his personal passion is writing fiction, he has worked as an academic tutor for years and enjoys helping others develop their own writing style in an academic setting. Jacob is also a member of the University Honors Program and is an editor for the program's literary journal Sanctuary. He intends to earn his Ph.D. so that he can teach creative writing skills as a professor and has dedicated much of his life to studying the art of writing stories.

Fun Facts: Jacob has done theatre for years and has performed competitively at both the state and national level. While he loves to read and hear stories, he also has a deep love for musicals and can talk to you for hours about some of his favorites, like Hadestown. He has a deep love for Shakespeare and poetry in general and can recite all of Lewis Carroll's "Jabberwocky" from memory.

MJ Freeman

MJ Freeman, Undergraduate Tutor

Born and raised in Birmingham, Alabama, Ms. Mia J. Freeman graduated with honors from Wenonah High School. Thereafter, she obtained her Bachelor of Arts in English with a minor in Psychology from the illustrious Benedict College. Currently, MJ is pursuing her Master of Arts in English at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. After graduating from UAB, MJ wants to obtain a Ph.D. in hopes of teaching at a four-year university one day.

Fun Facts: MJ loves watching romantic-comedy movies and spending time with friends.

Sarah Goggans

Sarah Goggans, Adjunct Tutor

Sarah received her B.A. in English from Auburn University and her M.A. in English from UAB. She teaches Freshman Composition at UAB, and she enjoys working with students from all writing disciplines.

Fun Facts: In her spare time, she likes reading fantasy novels, playing Super Smash Brothers, and spending time with her dog (Walter) and cat (Nerf).

Madison Hogg

Madison Hogg, Graduate Tutor

Madison is a second-year graduate student working toward her M.A. in English. She graduated from Troy University Dothan in May 2020 with a B.S. in English and a second major in Psychology. Most of her work concerns the intersection of literature and psychology, with special interests in gender, interpersonal relationships, and spirituality. She is writing her thesis on the role complicated grief plays in Frankenstein. Madison has received additional training in assisting with multimodal projects.

Fun Facts: Madison's current hobbies include reading fantasy novels (especially ones where the characters have apostrophes in their names), listening to The Mountain Goats, and watching anime.

Shannon House

Shannon House, Adjunct Tutor

Shannon graduated from UAB with an M.A. in English in April 2019. Before UAB, she received her B.A. in English with a minor in French from the University of South Alabama. During her second year at UAB, she was the Co-Assistant Director of the Writing Center, and she absolutely loved her time spent working with students and her fellow tutors.

Fun Facts: Shannon has an extensive movie collection, but she is particularly interested in horror movies (especially those produced by A24). In her free time (and in non-pandemic circumstances), she loves live music, museums, and road trips.

Anna Lacruz

Anna Lacruz, Graduate Tutor

Anna LaCruz is a first-year graduate student at UAB. In 2021, she completed a double major B.A. in English (Literature) and an IDM B.S. in Education. In the past year she has tutored privately and taught intimidatingly large groups of preschoolers. Anna has experience in science writing, as her first two and a half years at UAB were as a Neuroscience major. She also has experience in essays and projects from the Education department.

Fun Facts: Anna loves science fiction and fantasy, but her favorite franchise is Star Wars. She loves to watch the various animated series and read the accompanying Star Wars novels. Her other interests include robots, movies, mood-specific Spotify playlists, and the beach.

Jace Rose

Jace Rose, Graduate Tutor

Jace Rose is a second-year master's student studying creative writing and working on her collection of short stories and poems. She graduated with an associate's at Jefferson State many years ago and then received her bachelor's from UAB in 2021, missing her studies and fellow students just one week later. (So here she is now, back at it!) Jace has received additional training in assisting with multimodal projects.

Fun Facts: Jace loves hiking with her German Shepherd and Lab, foraging for mushrooms she can cook and make tea with, going on adventures (especially travel ones), playing music and gigs and video games and cooking spaghetti like her Gram. She also loves Indian food more than almost anything, barring her husband and puppy doggies.

Lauren McInnis

Lauren McInnis, Graduate Tutor

Lauren is a first-year graduate student working towards her MA in English literature. Raised in Enterprise, AL, Lauren attended UAB for her undergraduate degree, graduating with a BA in English literature and a minor in Psychology in May of 2021. The highlight of her time as an undergrad was writing her thesis, "The Six Steps of the Redemption Narrative." She identified a basic path that all redemption narratives follow and used this to analyze nine British Romantic and Victorian redemptions plus "Little Red Cap" and "The Parable of the Prodigal Son." After graduating, Lauren took a break from school and spent a gap year working at her hometown's public library before returning for graduate school.

Fun Facts: Lauren can make anything. She sews, knits, crochets, paints, book binding, printmaking, etc. If you give her the materials and the time, she can figure out how to make it.

Lorrie Beth Milton

Lorrie Beth Milton, Graduate Tutor

Lorrie Beth received her B.A. in English from UAB in the Fall of 2010 and M.A. in Theological Studies from Samford in 2017. Currently, she is working towards her M.A. in English and is overjoyed to be a part of the outstanding Writing Center staff. Outside of UAB, Lorrie Beth teaches Integrated Reading and Writing courses at Jefferson State Community College. She adores 20th Century American literature specifically Flannery O’Connor, Sylvia Plath, and Ernest Hemingway. Her favorite novel is Catcher in the Rye.

Fun Facts: Lorrie Beth’s favorite thing to do is to go on spontaneous trips with no plan, no preparation, just book and go (shoutout to Scotts Cheap Flights). Everywhere she travels she finds a locally owned bookstore and befriends the shop owner, leaving with no less than four books—one of which must be a pick made by them. Her favorite “shop owner pick” is On the Corner of Bitter and Sweet from a bookshop owner in San Francisco.

Kate Oakley

Kate Oakley, Adjunct Tutor

Kate received a Master’s degree in Writing, Literature, and Publishing from Emerson College in 2003. After working as an editor in educational publishing, she realized how much she missed working directly with students, so she became certified to teach English as a Second Language and began teaching ESL and writing. She has taught students from around the world ages 17—55+. She especially enjoys helping students recognize and develop their own voice.

Fun Facts: Kate tried cross-stitching during a recent trend and now buys more floss than she will ever use. Kate also plays Wordle with way too much intensity, haphazardly tends houseplants, and likes walking and hiking with her husband, son, and dog.

Madison Owens

Madison Owens, Graduate Tutor

Madison Owens is a first-year graduate student pursing her MA in English. She recently graduated from Birmingham-Southern College with a BA in English and a minor in Political Science. She hopes to eventually pursue her PhD, and one day become a professor.

Fun Facts: In her spare time, she enjoys reading, writing, and watching movies.

Kaylie Rastegar

Kaylie Rastegar, Undergraduate Tutor

Kaylie Rastegar is a senior English major who is concentrating in creative writing. Kaylie loves reading and writing. In the future, she hopes to earn a masters and PhD to eventually become an English professor.

Fun Facts: Kaylie loves to spend her free time watching movies/tv shows, hanging out with her family, and listening to music or podcasts.

Elizabeth Skinner, Adjunct Tutor

Elizabeth Skinner, Adjunct Tutor

Elizabeth received her M.A. in English in 2022 from UAB. Her thesis, "Insulation and Paper" focused on her experience living through a Category 4 tornado when she was a dreamy, homeschooled sixteen-year-old. Her passion for writing, tutoring, and helping others see their writing potential has led her to teach writing composition for UAB and tutor in our Writing Center. She is SafeZone certified.

Fun Facts: Elizabeth has taken ballroom dancing for over ten years and now teaches ballroom dancing at her church. She also struggles to read anything other than Brandon Sanderson.

Caitlyn Smith

Caitlyn Smith, Undergraduate Tutor

Caitlyn is a junior majoring in Secondary Education with a concentration in English and a minor in literature. She is a member of the Alpha Xi Delta, Theta Phi chapter. She hopes to teach high school English and work with international students.

Fun Facts: Caitlyn loves quality time with others. She is a Hufflepuff, enjoys coffee, watching Gilmore Girls, and reading anything but the books she already owns. Her favorite book is Wuthering Heights, and her favorite film is Emma (2020).

Victoria Sutton

Victoria Sutton, Undergraduate Tutor

Victoria Sutton is a senior Computer Science major and Music minor. She is in the University Honors Program and founded Women in Tech at UAB. Most of her education experience comes from working as a flute instructor and marching technician, but she is passionate about helping others expand their writing skills as an exercise of enriching cognitive reasoning and developing confidence in themselves. She also has experience in filmmaking, with her work being shown at this year’s Sidewalk Film Festival.

Fun Facts: Victoria has memorized 30 songs by The Eagles, including all the songs in order in both the Hotel California and Their Greatest Hits (1971–1975) albums. Along with classic rock and oldies, she enjoys video game OSTs, with The Legend of Zelda being her favorite series.

Lorice Tolbert

Lorice Tolbert, Graduate Tutor

Lorice Tolbert is a graduate student pursuing an M.A. in English. Lorice earned a B.A. in English with a concentration in Creative Writing from Miles College. Lorice has self-published two children’s books to encourage reading among young members of her family. She hopes to continue doing so for even more young children. Lorice has received additional training in assisting with multimodal projects.

Fun Facts: Even though Lorice is a firm believer that the book is always better than the movie, she still watches the Lord of the Rings trilogy and almost anything Jane Austen over and over again.

Chloe Tombo

Chloe Tombo, Undergraduate Tutor

Chloe Tombo is a sophomore undergraduate student with a double major in English and Philosophy. She plans to go to law school with hopes of becoming an Immigration or Family lawyer. But she is still open to changes and has in mind of earning her masters and Ph.D. to become an English professor. She would love to teach a Russian literature class one day.

Fun Facts: In her free time, Chloe is usually making art with ideas that float around her head. She loves hiking and spending hours in bookstores looking at books (sometimes leaving with more than three or nothing) and making random jokes. She is a tea connoisseur, and her favorite tea is Earl Grey with a splash of oat milk.

Mallorie Turner

Mallorie Turner, Graduate Tutor

Mallorie is a current senior double majoring in English with a concentration in Professional Writing and Molecular Biology with a minor in Studio Art. She completed the English portion of her degree by presenting an undergraduate thesis on teaching science writing to English majors. Mallorie has great experience with writing scientific documents like abstracts and lab reports in Biology, Organic Chemistry, and Physics. Her research interests include science/scientific writing best practices, genetics, virology, and cancer biology.

Fun Facts: Mallorie spends time outside of school teaching herself Spanish, learning to draw better, and reading classic novels. She also makes time to watch her favorite shows and movies on Netflix.

Maya Van Houten

Maya Van Houten, Undergraduate Tutor

Maya is a senior undergraduate at UAB majoring in Public Health with a minor in Professional Writing and Public Discourse. After graduation, she plans on pursuing a graduate degree in Public Health with a focus in health communication. Passionate about health literacy and access, Maya plans to use her love of scientific communication to connect the findings from the research lab to her community’s living room.

Fun Facts: Maya loves to travel and has studied abroad in England and Wales. In her spare time, she loves to take up new “grandma” hobbies, like cross stitch, macrame, and attempting to bake sourdough bread. One of her ultimate goals is to convince her cats it’s fun to go outside and be adventure kitties.

Sydney Whittinham

Sydney Whittinham, Undergraduate Tutor

Sydney Whittinham is a current third-year undergraduate student studying Kinesiology with a concentration in Exercise Science at UAB. She hopes to better understand individuals’ various physiological implications in certain rehabilitative exercises to later become a traveling physical therapist. When Sydney isn’t reading or writing, she spends her free time cooking/baking, listening to music, hanging out with friends, or watching her favorite movie Independence Day.

Fun Facts: Sydney is originally from Atlanta, Georgia, but has lived in over 15 different countries or states, the most interesting being Brazil.

Alex Yates

Alex Yates, Undergraduate Tutor

Alex Yates is a current third-year undergraduate student in the International Studies program at UAB. She hopes to learn more about governance and the nature of human systems and pursue a career in nonprofit administration. When Alex isn’t reading or writing, she loves to spend time cooking with her friends or watching American Horror Story with her roommate!

Fun Facts: Alex is also a barista at a local coffee shop and loves to practice latte art at work! You can also catch her rock climbing (or falling) at the rec wall!