Finals Schedule

From the Office of the Registrar:

Spring Semester 2017 classes will end on Wednesday, May 3. Thursday, May 4 is designated as a READING DAY with no exams scheduled for that day or evening.

Arrangements for approved make-up examinations during final exams week are to be scheduled with the instructor of the class.

Friday, May 5

8:00A-11:00A for classes meeting at 1:00P   MWF

12:00P-3:00P for classes meeting at 3:30P MWF

3:30P-6:30P for classes meeting at 9:15A MWF

(7:00P-10:00P for Wednesday only evening classes & MW evening classes)

Saturday, May 6

8:00A-11:00A for classes meeting at 8:00A MWF

12:00P-3:00P for classes meeting at 9:45A TTH

3:30P-6:30P for classes meeting at 1:00P TTH

(7:00P-10:00P for Thursday only evening classes & TTH evening classes)

Monday, May 8

8:00A-11:00A for classes meeting at 2:15P MWF

12:00P-3:00P for classes meeting at 2:45P TTH

3:30P-6:30P for classes meeting at 11:45A MWF

(7:00P-10:00P for Monday only evening classes)

Tuesday, May 9

8:00A-11:00A for classes meeting at 4:30P TTH

12:00P-3:00P for classes meeting at 10:30A MWF

3:30P-6:30P for classes meeting at 4:45P MWF

(7:00P-10:00P for Tuesday only evening classes)

Wednesday, May 10

8:00A-11:00A for classes meeting at 8:00A TTH

Thursday, May 11

Senior Grades are due to the Registrar by 12 NOON

Monday, May 15

All Final Spring 2017 Grades due to Registrar by 12 NOON


Symposium is Upon Us!

We are less than 24 hours away from perhaps one of the most important if not the most important moment in the English Department!  Drum roll, please….

The Senior Symposium!

So whether you’re a senior presenting your thesis or a student excited to learn about all different kinds of literature, check out the symposium schedule below and attend a panel.  And let’s celebrate tomorrow how special this department is.

For more information about the symposium, visit the department’s website.





The Journey to Juniper


Every summer, writers come together at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst for the Juniper Institute, an immersion program into the life of a writer, and this coming summer, one of our very own alumni hopes to spend time at the institute.  Chebrya Jeffery ’16 has a passion for poetry; Juniper is the next step toward her dreams.  But she needs our help.  Read on to see how you can support Chebrya–especially through her Go Fund Me–as she raises support for the Juniper Institute:

For me, poetry was the impetus for declaring a creative writing minor, but I didn’t get around to the course until my senior year. When I finally took advanced poetry it was under Heather Christle, the Dixon Professor of Creative Writing, last spring. What a stroke of luck! I learned about the Juniper Institute through Heather, and she encouraged me to apply.

When I was accepted, I was paying my way through Witt and knew I wouldn’t have the extra money to go, so I made a Go Fund Me account. I ended up raising $465. Although that was more than enough to be grateful for, I was short of my $1900 dollar goal ($1550 for tuition, $368 for room and board, not including round-trip transportation and meals), and wasn’t able to make it.

For those who don’t know, the Juniper Institute is a week-long immersion in the “writer’s life,” hosted by the MFA program for Poets and Writers at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. At the heart of the institute are daily workshops in poetry, fiction, and creative non-fiction, where work is generated and shared among small groups.

In addition to the workshops, craft seminars, manuscript consultations, Q&As, and evening readings are held all week long. (and, one of the writers in residence is the author of It Is Daylight, a book I recently read and loved). In short it’s an opportunity too good to miss, twice.

When I applied to Juniper, I referenced one of my favorite children’s books, Are You My Mother, in my personal statement. The book’s about a little chick’s quest to find its mom. He approaches dogs, cats, boats, and even machines, asking “are you my mom?”

These interactions fall flat as each prospective mother denies the chick, and so he moves on. Eventually, though after falling into some danger (spoiler alert), he finds her.

Idealist that I am, I would love to say I’m going to Juniper because I know poetry is my life’s purpose, and that I’ve decided, beyond the shadow of a doubt, to pursue writing with my life. The truth is, I’m more like the chick. I’m out in the world, looking for my “mother,” and I’ve got this feeling that Juniper can give me some clues.

I applied again in February and was accepted a second time. This year Juniper is June 18-25, and I want to go, but the financing is an obstacle. Of course, the post-grad financial life of an individual with a self-designed major in what may as well have been called Go to Grad School, Joblessness and Impracticality (at least in the beginning), should be a little tricky.

Thus, I am trying my hand, again, at fund-raising for my tuition and boarding expenses, which, minus the $465 I raised last year, comes to $1435. That’s $14.35, to this page,, from one hundred people. I think it’s do-able. Would you help me?

– Chebrya Jeffrey

Click here to read one of Chebrya’s poems, “You Might Also Feel Dizzy.”

“You Might Also Feel Dizzy” | Chebrya Jeffrey ’16

You Might Also Feel Dizzy

after Deborah Paradez

Diarrhea for more than two

days confusion fever and

weight loss are symptoms

of not having had enough

water you might also feel

dizzy and lose your ability

to pee or sweat to function

properly they say a blood

test must be taken on an

empty stomach they want

to see the real you when it’s

all stripped away at the lab

the nurse injects the needle

but fidgets a bit in my arm

and I pass out like a porce-

lain plate hitting the floor

when everything is stripped

away whats left is a fiber wet

with sap the part you feed your-

self on if you feast on yourself

for too long you disappear

Witty Jokes for Witty English

May these clever English puns be a bright welcome to your weekend.

Queen meets Edgar Allan Poe












We all know Dickens was being far too optimistic in A Tale of Two Cities….


Saving the day one plagiarized paper at a time.




We all know Grandma makes the best food not is the best food.


Procrastination is my superpower.


Hey now, apostrophe, we can all share Grandma’s food!


Sassy English Majors are the best kind.


I’m done.  This is literally mind blowing.


Anyone hungry?


I would not like to be in this bar.


Classic Shakespeare.




Just Like the Golden Globes

Last Thursday night, the place to be for the English department was Founders Pub.  Students and faculty gathered together to celebrate our wonderful major.  From a witty opening monologue by Dr. Mattison and some matching games with SAGE Presidents Meaghan Summers and Jessica Hamm, to literary awards for students and gag gifts for professors, the night was a memorable one.  And even though Dr. Mattsion did have some jokes about the stereotypes given to English majors, we wouldn’t change our experience for the world.

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Literary Awards were presented to:

English 101 Prize – Trevor Hoberty ’20

Sophomore Prize – Anissa Dan ’18

Senior Prize – Maria Symons ’17

Sherwood Anderson Prize for Fiction – Megan Winters ’17

Poetry – Chole Bruchett ’17

Playwriting/Screenwriting – Camila Quinones ’17

Non-fiction Prose – Maria Symons ’17

The Lester S. Crowl Creativity Award – Camila Quinones ’17


Faculty Awards:

The High Queen Award – Dr. Askeland

The Tough Guy Who’s Soft on the Inside – Dr. Hinson

Classic Villain – Dr. Mattison

The Good Guy – Dr. MacDonald

Barefoot Sage – Dr. McClleland

The Gentle Giant – Dr. Davis

The Moral Compass – Dr. Richards

The Street Performer – Dr. Battle

The One with the Horns and Pitchfork – Dr. Incorvati

The Rogue Wanderer – Dr. Polak

The Wise Old Sage – Dr. Buckman

The Storyteller – Dr. Inboden

The Eccentric Mentor – Dr. Fallon

The Narrator – Christina Reynolds

A Sabbatical with No Snow

Though we miss them while they’re gone, we love to hear all about the things our professors do while on sabbatical.  Dr. Inboden is no different:

When I chose a spring semester for my sabbatical, I did so with a bit of luxurious anticipation; I imagined waking up to falling snow in a house well-stocked with cinnamon tea and raspberry jam for toast, knowing that I didn’t have to go anywhere. The mounting snow would create a hush in which I could read and write for long hours, cut off from the outside world. I have apparently picked the wrong year, weatherwise, for that particular fantasy.

But the reading and writing has gone forward nonetheless, though not with the accompanying romance of being snowbound. One of the key projects I planned for this sabbatical was to propose a critical edition of a Victorian work. Such a project appeals to several of my strengths: attention to detail, fascination with historical contexts, and tenacity in research. The first step would be to settle on a work in which the publisher might be interested. I had already developed a short list of intriguing works not easily available in an up-to-date critical edition. The first part of my sabbatical has been spent reading and re-reading some of the works on that list.

Here’s the thing: there’s a reason that Anne Bronte’s Agnes Grey, her first novel, isn’t widely discussed. It’s a pale prelude to her wonderful Tenant of Wildfell Hall. In fact, it almost doesn’t seem like a novel at all until more than halfway through its length, but like the bitter diary of a young woman complaining about her rotten luck in life. agnes_greyAnne still had much to learn about creating characters and telling incident—something she mastered in her second novel, but not her first. Sadly, I’m not sure it’s a novel that requires a new edition. I’ve been reading a number of hard-to-find Victorian novels as well as lesser-known works by major authors, and I’ve narrowed down my choices. I’ve also learned a lot about the whole landscape of Victorian fiction, not just the masterworks I usually teach. I think I’ll be writing an initial query to the publisher soon.

Of course, that’s not the only thing I’m doing on my sabbatical. I’m also working on some personal essays, one on my growing obsession with early 20th-century glass and pottery, especially that tureens-2produced in eastern Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. The transformation of the sand, clay, and coal of the Appalachian hills into sparkling pieces of craft with whimsical names speaks to my eyes and my heart. Reading that sentence, I feel that I’ve officially become an old lady—but I’m okay with that.

And before this sabbatical is through—not until August, really—I will have made some significant revisions to a couple of my courses, especially English 101. Focusing deeply on reading, writing, and pondering without distraction feeds something important in me. I will be back in the fall renewed, rested, and revived with optimism that I’m giving my best to my students—even without a snow day.

–  Dr. Inboden

Writing about the Writing Center

When taking on the honors thesis, usually people think about their favorite author or work to write about.  However, this senior realized she couldn’t write about something she wasn’t passionate about.  Instead, she took a step back, surveyed her Wittenberg experience, and found the perfect thing to write about:

I love being an English major, but I began to panic when I realized that I did not feel pulled towards one period or style of writing over the others; I thought my thesis was supposed to reflect my passions within the major, and though I have enjoyed every class within the department, none of them truly fit the description. But that did not mean I was completely passionless. I have worked in the writing center since the fall of my sophomore year, and my college experience has been formed and shaped specifically by this experience.


I chose to do an honors thesis because it allowed me to think outside the box. I’ve visited writing centers at three other universities and interviewed staff members in their writing centers, as well as advisors in our own, to understand the similarities and differences between them all. Writing this thesis has been a great opportunity for me to reflect on the work I have done, and the ways others carry this work out similarly, all simultaneously finding our places in a broader community. Although it took me a while to figure it out, I have found a passion in the English department, and this passion will help me navigate the (horrifying/exciting) changes ahead.

– Sophie Hulen ’17