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English & Speech

Faculty

 Chelle Costello, MFA
English Instructor
(970) 339-6520
chelle.costello@aims.edu

Chelle earned a bachelor's degree in International Social Studies and a Master's in English from Indiana University. She has been teaching introductory writing classes at Aims since 2014. She is excited to co-sponsor, along with Megan Friesen, Aims English Honor Society and The Aims Review. She also facilitates the local Poetry Aloud group, which meets at the Centennial Library. She loves reading and writing because they are the best ways to discover things about herself and the world.

Her favorite book is "The Name of The Wind" by Patrick Rothfuss because it made her rethink what magic and fantasy could be. Chelle believes Rothfuss will break your heart in all the right ways. Travel, painting, playing piano enriches her life, as do her two fat cats: Yuki and Keebo.

 Allison Easley, M.A.
English Instructor
(970) 339-6271
allison.easley@aims.edu

Allison has been teaching English and Humanities at Aims full-time since 2014. She earned a B.A. in English from University of Colorado at Boulder, an M.A. in English from the University of Montana at Missoula, and a secondary-education license in language arts from Colorado State University. She teaches Composition, Mythology and Introduction to Literature.

Her favorite literature includes many 19th-century classics, such as "Moby Dick," "Jane Eyre," "Wuthering Heights," and the novels of Jane Austen, Thomas Hardy, Charles Dickens, and Elizabeth Gaskell, about whom she wrote her master’s thesis. She loves to read and write because those processes are transformative.

One of her favorite childhood memories of reading is having her dad read Tolkien’s "The Hobbit" aloud to her. Yoga is one of her favorite hobbies.

 Megan Friesen, M.A.
Assistant Professor
(970) 339-6351
megan.friesen@aims.edu

Megan moved from Nebraska to Greeley in 2012. She teaches Composition and Literature and is a co-sponsor the Aims English Honor Society and The Aims Review with Chelle Costello. Reading gives her the best adventures. In fifth grade, she discovered a book called "Witch Weed." She remembers reading it at least four times that school year. She couldn't put it down. That was the first time a book called to her over and over again.

She also loves the empowerment of writing. Writing allows us to change our communities by expressing ourselves clearly and logically.

She enjoys spending any free time running, hiking, reading, playing musical instruments and watching movies. Mostly though, she spends her free time playing with her fur-children: Mia and Hope.

 
 Kendra Griffin, M.A.
Assistant Professor
Creative Writing Club Advisor
(970) 339-6343
kendra.griffin@aims.edu

Kendra Griffin has been teaching at Aims since 2008. She earned her B.A. in English from the State University of New York at Oswego and her M.A. in English from the College of Staten Island. Kendra teaches Basic Composition, Composition I and II, Introduction to Literature and Children’s Literature.

Kendra serves as advisor for the Creative Writing Club (gochoaci@aims.edu) and the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) and coordinates student and faculty sessions for the Writers' Community.

Kendra is the recipient of the 2016 Faculty of the Year and 2016 Club Advisor of the Year Awards.

Kathy LeeKathy Lee
Staff Associate
(970) 339-6244
kathy.lee@aims.edu

Jared Merk, M.A.
English Instructor
Jared Merk(970) 339-3543
jared.merk@aims.edu

Jared has taught various writing classes at Aims since 2008. He earned an M.A. in English/Creative Writing from the University of Northern Colorado. He is also the creator of the Aims Online Writing Lab, a website that provides writing resources for faculty an staff, and both his fiction and nonfiction writings have appeared in various magazines and journals.

He is the recipient of the 2012-2013 Award for Excellence in Teaching, as chosen by students, and a recipient of the 2015-2016 Part-Time Faculty of the Year Award.

Thomas Carlyle once said, “If you invent writing, you invent democracy,” which means we become empowered through careful listening, reading, writing, and reflecting. Jared loves to read and write to facilitate Carlyle’s version of democracy and because it allows him to make sense of an increasingly complex world. He enjoys teaching writing so he can empower his students to do the same.

April McClure, MFA, MPSApril McClure
Speech Instructor
(970) 339-6559
april.mcclure@aims.edu 

April McClure has been teaching at Aims since 2015. She double majored and received a B.A. in Speech Communications and Theatre, and an A.A. in Art, from Adams State College. She received her M.F.A. in Theatre Education with an emphasis in voice and speech from Virginia Commonwealth University and another master's degree in Speech Communications from University of Denver. She is the recipient of the FRCC John Jenkins Master Teacher Award for 2008-2009. She is also proud to have had the opportunity to teach English at a technical high school, Ono Kogyo Koko, in Japan, from 1999-2002.  She currently teaches Public Speaking and Interpersonal Communications for Aims, and coming soon, she will be teaching Theatre Arts and directing scenes from plays and other literary works.She is very excited to get the opportunity to work on her craft once again. Theatre, she says,"is the practice of acting what I have learned from my observations."

The reason why she loves teaching communication and theatre courses is because she is fascinated by people and the choices they make in their life journey. In Public Speaking, the topics students present are interesting, limitless, and really show what students are interested in and how these interests evolve with time.
 
In Interpersonal Communication, everyone is sharing their own stories as we explore human behavior, their choices and how they are communicated. She brings into the classroom her observations and experiences from living and traveling in other countries, and her love for learning about other cultures, beliefs, values, and attitudes. For April, the world is the best classroom where you can learn so much by interacting with others. However, you do not have to travel any farther than the classroom to learn about culture, especially at Aims, where there is so much rich diversity affording us the opportunity to learn from each other. 
 

Leslie Morrison, Ph.D.
English InstructorLeslie Morrison
(970) 339-3547
leslie.morrison@aims.edu

Leslie received her MA from Washington State University and her PhD from the University of Oregon where she taught Composition and studied eighteenth-century British literature. Leslie has nine years of experience teaching Composition at colleges in the Pacific Northwest and New Mexico. She began teaching at Aims in 2016.

Some of her favorite things to read are nineteenth-century novels, true crime books, and cookbooks. When she's not reading, you might find her running or cooking. She likes living in Colorado where she can blame the altitude for all her slow running times and cooking failures. 

 

Nickie Medina, M.A.Nickie Medina
Professor English and Humanities
(970) 339-6423
nickie.medina@aims.edu

Nickie Medina has been teaching at Aims for 22 years. She earned an AA at Aims and both her BA and Masters at the University of Northern Colorado. Nickie has taught Remedial English, teaches Composition I and II, teaches both English Comp and literature online, and performs advising duties.

I remember reading Little Women and Jo’s Boys by Louisa May Alcott in 5th grade. I fell in love with the character Jo. The characters in the story inspired me to become a life-long reader. I enjoy reading, quilting, and oil painting. Winnie is my year old border collie/Australian shepherd mix, and I love spending time with her. Also, I have five cats.

Teaching writing builds confidence in student writers. They not only feel more confident with their writing but also with themselves. To see that awareness is remarkable. They overcome some of their fears of writing as well.


 Evan Oakley, MFA
Program Chair, English & Humanities
(970) 339-6507
evan.oakley@aims.edu

Evan Oakley has taught full-time at Aims since 1994. He teaches Composition and Humanities courses.

He has served as Chair of the department since 2005. He is a recipient of the 2004 Faculty of the Year Award, the 2010-2011 Dean's Award, a Colorado Council of the Arts Award for Poetry, has published in various journals and magazines, and is a 2016 HearStrong Champion recipient

Jennifer Ridgeway, MFA
English Instructor
(970) 339-6244
jennifer.ridgeway@aims.edu

Jennifer has been teaching Developmental English and Composition at Aims since 2014. She earned a B.A. in English from the University of Redlands in California and an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from the University of Alabama. At San Francisco State University, she also studied Reading and Composition pedagogy.

 Rebecca Sailor, M.A.
Interim Director of Faculty Teaching and Learning Center (FTLC)
Professor of English and Humanities
(970) 339-6505
rebecca.sailor@aims.edu

Rebecca Sailor has been teaching English and humanities at Aims full-time since 2007. She earned an A.A. from Joliet Jr. College, B.A. in English/Writing from the University of St. Francis in Joliet, and a M.A. in English from the University of Northern Colorado. Rebecca teaches Humanities I and II, World Mythology, Technical Writing and Composition.

She loves teaching writing because of the empowerment that comes from being able to make a good argument clearly. Communicating well is the essential skill for fulfilment in work, life, and love.

Her reading interests span Ancient Literature, World Literature, and Harlem Renaissance. Rebecca's favorite childhood memory of reading is Roald Dahl’s "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory." For her, "Candy and imagination has always been a perfect fit." Later, she read the Laura Ingalls Wilder "Little House on the Prairie" series until all the covers fell off. Then, her mom bought her a new set and she did it all over again.

Rebecca was awarded the 2014 Diana Hacker TYCA Award for Outstanding Programs in English for Two-Year Colleges and Teachers (Writers’ Community), 2012 Aims Faculty of the Year, and Aims Online Teaching Excellence in 2016.



 Brian Seeman, M.A. MFA
English Instructor
(303) 857-4022 Ext. 5947
brian.seemann@aims.edu

Brian started teaching at Aims in 2014, having earned a B.A. from Stephen F. Austin State University and a M.A. and M.F.A. from Wichita State University.  He teaches Composition, Literature, Humanities and Creative Writing. His fiction appears in Regarding Arts and Letters, BULL, Noble/Gas Quarterly, Mojave River Review among other journals and anthologies. Favorite reads include Galway Kinnell's "Book of Nightmares," James Salter's "Light Years," and books by Raymond Carver, Peter Orner, Marilynne Robinson and Kent Haruf. Brian likes baseball, and enjoys time with his loyal cocker spaniel, Bubba.

Meg Spencer, M.A.Meg Spencer
Academic Coordinator, English and Speech
(970) 336-6291
meg.spencer@aims.edu

Meg earned her M.A. in English with a concentration in Rhetoric at UNC. She has enjoyed the privilege of teaching Basic Composition, Composition I and II, Introduction to Literature and Introduction to Film Art at Aims; and currently serves as Academic Coordinator for the English and Speech Department.

Meg writes and reads to experience and make meaning of life’s complexities. Her bookshelf includes non-fiction and 19th and 20th century literature and poetry. As a young reader, she thrived on Nancy Drew mysteries and the adventures of fur trapper Jim Bridger and South Pole explorer Robert Scott.

Meg received the 2013 Part–Time Faculty of the Year award and the 2015 Distinguished Colleague of the Year award.