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Spring 2014:  Brown Bag Series, Reading Series, and Other Events


wrtcatWRT Essay and ePortfolio Contests 

(posted 5/19/14)

quick entry links:
WRT Essay Contests
WRT ePortfolio Contests


Hello WRT Student!

The Writing Program is happy to announce that our traditional WRT Essay Contest has been expanded to include some new categories: Best Upper-Division Essay, PWR Outstanding Writing 102 ePortfolio, and PWR Outstanding Legacy Writing ePortfolio.


Please note:

1) Students may only submit one essay to each category.

2) Students are welcome to submit their work to both the traditional essay contest and our new eportfolio contest (see below for more information)!

All interested students are encouraged to apply!

The prize for each award will be a “Write Anyway--PWR SBU” t-shirt and $100.

All winners will be featured on the PWR website.


Essays Contests

In addition to our traditional WRT 102 Essay Contest (which you can find out about here), we’ve added an award for Best Upper-Division Essay. Any students who completed WRT 102 in Winter 2014 or Spring 2014 as well as students who completed a 300-level writing course (i.e., WRT 302, 303, 304, 305, 380, 381) or any cross-listed 300-level courses in Fall 2013, Winter 2014, or Spring 2014, may apply! The deadline is May 31, 2014. Winners will be selected during the month of June.

To apply, simply click here to complete a few questions about your essay submission. Essays can be linked directly to our application form or emailed to

Essays must be received by 11:59 pm on May 31, 2014. Winners will be selected during the month of June. If you have any questions about the WRT Essay Contest, please email

 ePortfolio Contests

We have also added a WRT ePortfolio Contest. There will be two awards given to eportfolios this semester for the academic year 2013-2014, and one every year from now on. One will go to the best combination of design, engagement, and content in a WRT 102 eportfolio during the 2013-2014 academic year. (PWR Outstanding Writing 102 ePortfolio).


The other award will go to the best combination of design, engagement, and content in an eportfolio that features significant work from one or more WRT courses (although it does not have to be exclusively a WRT eportfolio) since the beginning of the eportfolio program in 2010--we are calling this the WRT ePortfolio Legacy Award, and it will offered be this year only.  (PWR Outstanding Legacy Writing ePortfolio).


The winning eportfolios in all cases may and are encouraged to include content from other classes and projects than WRT courses. All winners will be featured on the PWR website and in the TLT ePortfolio Spotlight.


ePortfolios should be self-nominated, although faculty can encourage their students to enter.  Self-nominations must be made by 11:59 pm on May 31, 2014. Winners will be selected during the.month of June. To apply, simply click here to complete a few questions about your ePortfolio submission. 

In addition to strong and interesting writing, nominated eportfolios should fulfill the following criteria:

  • I’ve provided evidence in my overall eportfolio that my choices about format and design elements such as layout, fonts, images, and colors express my point of view and demonstrate a strong awareness of my audience’s needs and expectations.

  • My decisions about eportfolio format and design demonstrate a strong critical understanding of relationships between two or more modes (e.g., texts and images) or between two or more examples of the same mode (e.g., a series of images).

  • I’ve shown my strong understanding of ethical use of digital sources by following the attribution and copyright set by the creator (ie, Creative Commons licensing)

See examples of strong WRT ePortfolios in the WRT ePortfolio Spotlight. If you have any questions about the WRT ePortfolio Awards, please email


 RhetComp@StonyBrook Blog Launched

The first issue of RhetComp@StonyBrook features posts by Kristina Lucenko on the maker mindset in the writing classroom and Christopher Petty on fostering feedback through dramaturgy.  


More PWR Faculty in the News

Roger ThompsonRoger is mentioned in the New York Times for a study he co-authored on writing workshops for veterans,  published in the September 9, 2013 issue in an article called "How to Run a Successful Writing Workshop for Veterans" by Matt Gallagher.
Marilyn ZuckerMarilyn is featured in Stony Brook Happenings for her semester of teaching autobiographical writing to university students in Portugal.
RitaRita Nezami published a translation from French of Tahar Ben Jelloun’s novella Par le feu (By Fire) in the September 16, 2013 issue of The New Yorker.  
Congratulations to all for their outstanding work!

Provost's Outstanding Lecturer Awards

Congratulations to the PWR's Wilbur Farley and Tom Tousey, recipients of the 2013 Provost's Outstanding Lecturer Award! This prestigious accolade, instituted in 2012, is granted to a full-time Faculty Lecturer at Stony Brook University based on significant contributions to the university, as evidenced by the quality of the individual's teaching, service, and related professional development.

Wilbur Farley has been a Lecturer with the Program in Writing and Rhetoric since 2000. His interests include film, emerging technologies, and popular culture. In addition to teaching the writing workshops 101 and 102, he has also taught upper-level writing courses, focusing on the cultural value of heroes and the rhetoric of mental health discourses.

Thomas Tousey has taught writing and rhetoric for more than twenty years, the last fifteen as a faculty member of the Program in Writing and Rhetoric at Stony Brook University. He has also taught classes for English and Journalism at SBU. Before coming to Stony Brook, he taught writing at Hofstra University and worked as a production editor for Physical Review Letters.

Wilbur Farley and Tom Tousey join our 2012 award recipients Jennifer Albanese, Dennis Clarke, Cynthia Davidson, and Marilyn Zucker. Congratulations to all!


writing minors 2013


Congratulations to our first Writing Minor graduates!

Pictured from left: Program in Writing and Rhetoric Director Gene Hammond, Joseph Cavera, Sean Walsh, and Zachary Carlisle. Not pictured: Irene Balanos, Pauline Dolle, Valentino Lee, Andrew Livigni (fall 2012), Zenna Solomon, and Courtney Schmitt (fall 2012). 

Congratulations to our 2012 Undergraduate Essay Award Winners!

researched essay
Brian Mazeski (instructor Kristine Seitz): “Generation Disbelief: Why Society Didn’t Know or Believe Smoking Was Harmful”

analytic essay
Nicole Casson (instructor Ryan Calvey): “Copyright and Copywrong”

informal essay
Rebekkah Karp (instructor Linda Josephs): “My First Time” 

And a special thanks to the judges: Jennifer Albanese, Cynthia Davidson, Jeff Green, Liz Kotseas, Kristina Lucenko, Rita Nezami, Ali Pincas, Barrie Stevens, and Tom Tousey. 


New Faculty

A warm welcome to our new faculty in the Program in Writing and Rhetoric!


Roger Thompson

Roger ThompsonRoger Thompson has taught at the Virginia Military Institute for fourteen years, where he was Professor of English and fine arts.  His research bridges the traditional disciplinary gaps between rhetoric, literature, and writing studies, and he has worked under fellowship at Harvard University pursuing cross-disciplinary research.  He is Senior Fellow at the Institute for Veterans and Military Families at Syracuse University, is the co-recipient of a CCCC Research Initiative Grant, and was invited to the inaugural Dartmouth Summer Seminar for Composition Research.  He is an award-winning nonfiction writer, and his scholarship and nonfiction has appeared in numerous academic and non-academic journals.  His primary area of research is in the history of rhetoric with a particular emphasis on classical and nineteenth-century rhetoric, but his recent work includes extensive scholarship on veterans and the culture of war.  He is co-author of Beyond Duty: Life on the Frontline of Iraq, a bestselling Iraq War memoir that has been translated into several languages and was covered by major media outlets, including The New York Times, CNN, the CBC, and NPR.  He has an extensive background in undergraduate research, directing a cross-disciplinary, international environmental research program in Banff, Alberta, for a decade, and his teaching and mentorship has been recognized by VMI with several awards and grants.  He received his PhD in Rhetoric and American Literature from Texas Christian University, and he received his BA and an MA in English from Baylor University.



Peter Khost

Peter Khost

Peter earned his Ph.D. in English with a concentration in composition studies from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. His M.A. and B.A. are from Rutgers and Fordham Universities, respectively. He has published on pedagogical and professional issues in higher education, and his diverse scholarly interests include writing program administration; autoethnography; the literature/composition divide; critical university studies; collaboration; assessing writing; and holistic or contemplative education, especially mindfulness and "felt sense" theory.

Khost teaches undergraduate and graduate courses at every level, 100-600, at Stony Brook University, and he is the former Associate Director of the Program in Writing and Rhetoric, and former Director of the Writing Center. He serves on the University's Undergraduate Council and maintains leadership positions on national, regional, and institutional committees in his field. Peter played integral roles in the creation of the new writing minor and development of cross-curricular writing initiatives at SBU. He developed and teaches the writing program's professional writing course and will soon offer another new course of his own design: Rhetorics of Love and Compassion.



Shyam Sharma

Shyam Sharma

Ghanashyam Sharma, who goes by Shyam (pronounce it "Sam"), used to be a teacher of linguistics, literature, and critical theory at the Tribhuvan University of Nepal, where he received his first master’s degree in English literature and a degree in English education. After completing a second master’s degree with a focus on rhetoric and composition from the University of Louisville, he received his PhD with the same specialty from the University of Louisville. Shyam’s professional interests include theories and pedagogies of composition and rhetoric, writing in the disciplines, multilingualism and language policies, digital media and composition, the intersection of global popular culture and literacy practices, and traditions and histories of rhetoric. Besides his passions for teaching and research, Shyam also has an interest in experiencing different cultures, mentoring other members of his professional communities, and, currently, “horse-riding”—which happens to be in its unique form of letting his two and four year old kids ride him around the house.






News and Events


Contests! See News and Events (above) for info or visit the entry links below!

WRT Essay Contest

WRT ePortfolio Contest

Enter by 11:59 pm, MAY 31, 2014


RhetComp@StonyBrook (PWR blog)


Writing Minor

Writing ePortfolio Spotlight

Meet Our New Faculty


Instructor's Tools

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Program in Writing and Rhetoric • Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY 11794-5340 • 631.632.7390
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