Language & Literature Dept
Mike Medley has chaired the Department of Language and Literature since August 2013. Within the department, he coordinates the minor in teaching English to speakers of other languages (TESOL) and regularly teaches TESOL courses in both the graduate and undergraduate divisions of the university, specializing in language and culture, English grammar, and methods of language teaching. He serves as adviser for students in EMU’s Bridge Program.
In 2010-11 Medley used his Sabbatical to create English language teaching materials based on the content of EMU’s trauma healing curriculum. He conducted workshops in English language teaching and trauma healing in Pakistan.
Prior to returning to teaching full-time in 2009, Medley served for 10 years as director of EMU’s Intensive English Program . He has published recently in _TESOL Journal, SPELT Journal, CELEA News, College Teaching, Christian Scholar’s Review, Global Issues in Language Education, and the International Journal of Christianity and English Language Teaching. He is co-author and editor of a popular teacher resource manual How to Teach English: A Survival Kit for Teachers of English at the Early Stages, which was published in Pakistan (1994) where he and his family lived and worked from 1983-94. Current research interests include the second language acquisition experiences of trauma-affected learners and strategies for teaching such learners; teaching culture and intercultural communication as a means of peacebuilding; and scaffolding English language learners’ access to academic language in complex texts.
Kirsten earned her MFA in creative writing at West Virginia University. She is a contributing editor to The Tusculum Review and edited the anthology Tongue Screws and Testimonies: Poems, Stories, and Essays Inspired by the Martyrs Mirror. Kirsten co-chaired Mennonites Writing VI: Solos and Harmonies, a bi-national writing conference, in Spring 2012. She served as interim director of EMU’s Core Curriculum from 2012-2014.
She lives in Briery Branch with her husband, daughters, a bevy of backyard chickens and ducks, several hives of honeybees, and Sophie the cat.
Don Clymer has broad international experience in Latin America and Europe in both church-related service and academics. Prior to EMU, he taught Spanish, German and Latin American studies at Hesston (Kas.) College and directed their Global Issues Seminar. He has also served as director of communications for the Virginia Mennonite Conference and Board of Missions.
Don served five years as director of EMU’s Cross-cultural Programs. In 2006 he returned full-time to the classroom.
Aside from his interest in language, he has completed a degree at Eastern Mennonite Seminary with a concentration in Spiritual Formation. As such, he has led workshops in discernment, prepared and led worship, and given spiritual direction in a variety of venues.
Bringing his many experiences together has led Don to explore the intersection of cross-cultural experiences and spiritual formation.
Don is the author of numerous articles in a variety of journals and has published two books Meditations on the Beatitudes: Lessons from the Margins published by Cascadia Publishing House, and The Spacious Heart: Room for Spiritual Awakening, published by Herald Press. The latter he co-authored with his sister, Sharon Clymer Landis.
Dr. Vi Dutcher is a professor of rhetoric and composition and teaches writing courses. Prior to coming to EMU, she taught writing and women’s studies courses at Kent State University—Stark Campus. She has also taught at The University of Akron and Cuyahoga Community College. She enjoys linking her courses to community partnerships where students produce a deliverable product for a specified need in an organization. Her research interests are community literacy practices in general and Amish and Mennonite female literacy practices in particular.
Martha Greene Eads grew up in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge mountains and studied literature and theology at Wake Forest University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and the University of Durham (UK). Before coming to EMU, she taught at the North Carolina Correctional Center for Women and at Valparaiso University in Indiana, where she held a Lilly Fellowship in Humanities and the Arts from 2001-2003. Her research and teaching interests include twentieth- and twenty-first-century drama, English modernism, and contemporary Southern fiction, and her articles on those topics have appeared in The Carolina Quarterly, Christianity and Literature, The Cresset, Modern Drama, The Southern Quarterly, and Theology.
Chad Gusler received his B.S. in Biblical Studies and Theology from Eastern Mennonite College in 1993. In 1998, he received an M.A. in Religion from Eastern Mennonite Seminary, and in 2007, his M.F.A. in creative writing (fiction) from Seattle Pacific University in Seattle, Washington.
Adriana is of Ecuadorian and Colombian heritage. She earned her PhD in Hispanic Studies at the University of Virginia. She also has a BA in Latin American Studies and Literature at American University and an MA in Hispanic Studies at the University of Virginia. Currently, she is working on completing a. In 2009 and 2010, she was administrator and instructor for the UVa Program in Peru. She joined the Language and Literature Department at EMU in 2012 and teaches Spanish language, literature, and film.
Adriana’s primary research interests are Twentieth Century Literature and Film, Andean Literature and Culture, Trauma and Resilience Narratives, and Hispanic American Women writers. Her dissertation in progress, “From Manchay Tiempo to ‘Truth’: Cultural Trauma and Resilience in Contemporary Peruvian Narrative,” tracks the development of cultural production in postconflict Peru.
A native of California, Kevin Seidel came to EMU from the University of Virginia, where he received his Ph.D. in English Literature and was a postdoctoral fellow at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture. He is working on a book project that uses original research on the eighteenth-century English Bible to open up new ways of thinking about the history of the English novel. He is also actively involved in Scriptural Reasoning. His teaching and scholarship both explore the changing relationship between religion, secularism, and literature.
Carol Snell-Feikema teaches Spanish language, Immigration Issues and community-learning, Latin American Civilization, Spanish Civilization and Spanish Literature. She and her husband, Michael, led the EMU Spain and Morocco Cross-Cultural Semester Fall 2013. A native of Iowa, she has also lived, studied and traveled extensively throughout Mexico and Central America.
She received her Master’s Degree in Spanish from Minnesota State University, Mankato in 2004. Her thesis, “The Process of Concientización in Isabel Allende’s De amor y de sombra,” studies the process of spiritual awakening and critical consciousness in the context of the Pinochet dictatorship in Chile. She studied Globalization and Liberation Theology at Departamento Ecuménico de Investigaciones in San Jose, Costa Rica with professors, human rights workers and missioners from throughout Latin America.
Prior to coming to EMU, she taught Spanish and Service-Learning at South Dakota State University, leading university cross-cultural and study abroad experiences to Guatemala, Mexico, Spain and the US-Mexico border at Nogales. Student service-learning projects have included running a day-camp for children in the shanty towns of Nogales, Mexico, giving out food, blankets and medicine in response to Tropical Storm Agatha in Guatemala, teaching English to Spanish-speaking immigrants, tutoring Spanish-speaking school children, translating at a local food bank, working with homeless people in Granada, Spain, designing and painting a welcome mural on a village guesthouse in Morocco as part of a program for revitalization of rural communities, and helping build a mosque in the Rif Mountains of Morocco.
Andrew White is a native of Western Oregon. He grew up near Portland, in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains. One of the most memorable events of his childhood was the eruption of Mount Saint Helens (65 miles north of Portland) on May 18, 1980.
After completing a bachelor’s degree, Andrew spent two years doing volunteer work in Eastern Europe – mostly in Bulgaria. Returning to the USA, he went on to earn an M.A. in English at Oregon State University (1999) and a Ph.D. in English at Washington State University (2003).
Before coming to EMU in August 2008, Andrew taught at the American University in Bulgaria, an American-style residential, liberal arts college in the Balkans. His research interests include early American literature, ethnic studies, and Balkan literature. Andrew teaches courses in literary studies (including Global Literatures II, Shakespeare, and ethnic literatures), first-year writing, and speech.
Jan completed the Executive Master of Public Administration degree from Syracuse University in December 2014. Jan earned a Certificate of Advanced Study in Conflict Resolution from the Syracuse University Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs and completed all classroom core requirements toward the SU Master of Social Work degree. Jan earned a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration and Management degree from Columbia College in 1997.
Jan worked at Syracuse University as human resources representative and then as senior administrator in the Office of Development, designing and implementing a New Hire Orientation Program for development officers and instituting a campus-wide support staff team for development office administrative assistants. In years prior, Jan worked for Carrier Corporation as a training coordinator and as a customer service representative.
Jan moved to Harrisonburg in December 2014 to complete General District Court (Mediation) Certification via the Fairfield Center, to continue working in an administrative role refining workplace interactions and processes, and to study local restorative justice practices. In November 2015 Jan completed the Harrisonburg Citizen Academy program. Jan volunteers as a conflict resolution facilitator, most recently with the JMU “Students as Neighbors” project and with the Department of Arts & Culture “Imagining Harrisonburg” program.