Writing Center - Meet Our Staff
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Writing Center Staff

We are thrilled to welcome you to the Writing Center! Each of us is ready to assist you at any stage of your writing project. While we all have specific tutoring strengths, we are ready and able to help you with any aspect of writing.

Check out our awesome staff below. Some of us even have superpowers.

Dr. Amanda Fields

aka, The Sentence Slayer
Director & Assistant Professor of English
she/her/hers

Hi, everyone! I'm the Writing Center director and an Assistant Professor of English. My areas of specialization are rhetoric, composition, and creative writing. I've worked at writing centers in Minnesota, Egypt, Arizona, and California, and I directed a writing center in Kansas prior to coming to Central in 2018. Those of us who work at writing centers know that, while writing may seem daunting, it can also be worthwhile and satisfying, and it can be especially helpful to converse with others during your writing process. At the Writing Center, you'll have a good conversation with a tutor and take a few steps toward your writing goals.

I'm also known as the Sentence Slayer. While I'd never be so cruel as to slay my students' sentences, I do take a sharp stake to my own! When I work with individual writers, I love to help them with coherence and concision. If you haven't guessed yet, I'm also quite fond of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Emily Kane

aka, The Line-Level Devil
Coordinator
she/her/hers

I’m Emily! I’ve worked in the CCSU Writing Center as an undergraduate tutor, graduate assistant, and now as a Coordinator. English language and literature have always been my favorite subjects. You might see me around the Writing Center keeping things running, or staying nearby to help peer tutors with your trickiest writing-related questions, or tutoring students myself. At home, I like to take pictures of my cats and eat a lot of legumes.

The Writing Center is a welcoming, genuine place where we want nothing more than to help students improve their writing skills. We work our hardest to impart knowledge and help you achieve your phenomenal potential through the semesters.

My favorite things to address are the little details -- punctuation placement, word choice, and citations! If I were a superhero, I’d be the Line-Level Devil, always ready to dish out an Oxford comma.

Bini John

aka, The Inspirational Inquirer
Coordinator
she/her/hers

Welcome, CCSU students and staff.  My name is Bini. I am excited to be a Coordinator in the Writing Center (WC). I started my journey with the team in the WC as a Graduate Assistant. My area of specialization is non-native and generation 1.5 writing in English. I have a Masters in English language and literature and have taught English as a second language to undergrad and grad students in India. At present, I am working towards an MS in TESOL at CCSU. In the U.S., I have been teaching students from around the world.

I am happy to help you with your writing at any stage. My years spent teaching English have taught me that there is always room for improvement. Organization of ideas and structure of a written piece are of prime importance to me. I can also assist you in identifying the right words and sentence structures for your ideas.

If I were a Writing Center superhero, I would be The Inspirational Inquirer. One tutoring strategy I use is to ask inspiring questions to help writers when they are struggling. Let us work together towards your writing goals.

Tori Congdon

Graduate Assistant Tutor, English
she/her/hers

Hi! I am a graduate student in the English MA program here at CCSU. Outside of the Writing Center, I tutor undergraduate students in Shakespeare courses. Before coming to CCSU, I was a teaching assistant in a variety of creative writing courses at ECSU. As much as I enjoy helping students improve their writing and running writing workshops, whether it be academic or creative, I spend most of my free time writing creatively. My most recent project has been a Kennedy-era rewrite of Shakespeare’s Macbeth. Besides writing, I love listening to music, specifically Taylor Swift, getting sucked into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and making bad jokes on Twitter. 

Robert Smythe

Graduate Assistant Tutor, TESOL
he/him/his

Hi everyone! My name is Robert, I’m from the UK, and I am currently earning my teacher certification to teach English to speakers of other languages (TESOL) here at CCSU. I have previously taught English in China and Saudi Arabia, and before moving to Connecticut last year, I taught students majoring in English at a private university in Japan. My interests include bird photography, cult films, and running. I am excited about working at the CCSU Writing Center and hope that I can provide students with the academic writing support that they need!

Maha Almuntaser

Office Assistant
she/her/hers

Hi, my name is Maha Almuntaser, and I am an Administrative Assistant at the Writing Center. I am majoring in Pre-Nursing, and my hobbies include drawing and painting. In my free time, I can always be found captivated by the latest fantasy novel. Although I do prefer original book versions over movie versions, I love going to the movie theater, with Marvel, DC, and Disney being the main reasons why. The Writing Center is full of kind and welcoming people who are always ready to help. I encourage those of you who seek assistance to make an appointment; I or another smiling face will be ready to greet you at the door.

Asma’a Alsaqri

Office Assistant 
she/her/hers

Hey, everyone! My name is Asma'a, not asthma. Currently I am an undergraduate looking towards a Sociology major. My hobbies include reading, writing, and trying out new cooking recipes. I’ll be one of the first people you meet coming into the writing center, and I will gladly help you with any questions. I hope you consider visiting us! We are ready to help!

Liloni Brown

Office Assistant
she/her/hers

Hi, my name is Liloni, and I am a sophomore majoring in Dance Education. Having the opportunity to be part of the Writing Center community means a lot because I love to read and write. My favorite genres are fiction, thrillers and mysteries. I seem shy, but, if you start talking to me about anything, I’m an open book. I will be here to help you with scheduling appointments to meet with tutors and provide you with Writing Center resources, so please come by for whatever help you may need. We don't judge anyone here at the Writing Center, so just bring your papers, an open mind and a positive attitude!

John Gavin

aka, The Iron Thesis
Tutor
he/him/his

Hello, my name is John. I'm a senior going for my B.A. in English with a minor in Writing/Publishing. I was out of school for a while after getting my Associate's in Liberal Arts but decided to return so I could pursue a career as an English teacher. 

My interests include reading, writing, role-playing video games, and pirates. When I say "pirates" I mean the history, the romanticization in media, dressing up like one at fairs, writing about them, and talking about them (which I will do, at length, if requested). Writing has always been something I've loved to do even at a young age, both creatively and to discuss literature. In my spare time I work on a fantasy novel I've been writing, which is of course about pirates. 

If I were a Writing Center Superhero, I'd be The Iron Thesis. The tighter and more ironclad that thesis is, the stronger your paper will be.

Olivia Grella

aka, Olivia the Outliner
Tutor

she/her/hers 

Hi! My name is Olivia, but I also go by Liv. I’m a Junior at CCSU, majoring in English with a minor in Strategic Communication. In my free time, you will most likely find me here in the Writing Center or in the ASAP office (I’m also a Peer Advisor for the School of Liberal Arts!) so I am always ready and willing to help students wherever I am! Outside of CCSU, I love watching all types of TV shows and movies, relaxing on the beach, and listening to my favorite music. 

Writing has been a passion of mine for as long as I can remember. I was always the oddball in the class that looked forward to writing an essay or creating a poetry book in a week. College writing can be a challenge, and I can’t wait to apply the tricks and tips I’ve acquired to help people see their potential! The Writing Center is the hearth for all things writing, with many dedicated, knowledgeable people that traverse a vast array of interests and are always ready to help. 

If I were a Writing Center superhero, I would be Olivia the Outliner. To me, the most crucial step of writing a successful essay is creating an outline and organizing all your ideas prior to beginning. I always find that an outline allows your thoughts to flow easier when you later go to expand those ideas. I love creating outlines to organize all my facts and quotes, and I want to use my superpower to share how to create a successful outline with anyone I help. 

Madino Hassan

Madino Hassan
aka, The Writing Fire Breather
Tutor
she/her/hers

Hi, everyone! My name is Madino, and I am one of the tutors at the Writing Center. I am a second-year student at CCSU pursuing a degree in Business and Philosophy. I have always had a deep passion for both reading and writing, which is why I thought being a part of the writing center squad would fit my vibe. I will be here to help with a variety of things such as writing structure, brainstorming ideas for your masterpiece, and providing you with any writing center resources you may need!

Jacob Keroack

Aka, The Enlivened Source Furnisher
Tutor
he/him/his

Greetings! My name is Jacob. I am a junior, majoring in Accounting. My interest in writing and literature stems from my gen ed courses in the humanities: Psychology, Anthropology, Sociology, and Music Theory. I plan to pursue further education where writing ability is especially utilized: a J.D. program.

If I were a Writing Center superhero, I would be the Enlivened Source Furnisher. I enjoy locating and integrating relevant sources into papers. The process of strengthening writing with empirical data or direct text citation is satisfying to me.

When I am not studying and tutoring, I enjoy international travel, trying new restaurants, listening to music from the Romantic era (circa 1815-1900), and appreciating films and art.

Zuquila Mbachiantim

aka, Creative Helper
Office Assistant
she/her/hers 

Hi, I'm Zuquila! Most people call me Z or Zuzu. I am currently a sophomore at CCSU. My favorite animals are pandas and elephants. I am a very outgoing and unique person, and I hope to share that talent with anyone that walks into the Writing Center, as I will be the first person they see. I have a strong passion for creative writing and hope to share it with others. I am also athletic and like to play basketball and volleyball. If I were a Writing Center superhero, my name would be Creative Helper. My superpowers are helping students learn how to use the Writing Center.

Nicole Rivera 

she/her/hers
Tutor

Hi everyone! I'm Nicole and I am an undergraduate pursuing my BA in English with a minor in Creative Writing. I have loved practicing and developing my writing since I was young, and I look forward to working with others and both sharing what I've learned and learning about what has worked for others! The area of my writing that I have been focusing on in my free time is my poetry, but I also love reading fiction and nonfiction. Writing is a craft and practice that is close to my heart, and I am so excited to get to work with others and help them create the best product they can. I look forward to listening to you, discussing what you'd like to achieve with your writing, and creating a plan on how we can get there!

Donald Roski

Tutor
he/him/his

Howdy!  I’m a senior going for my B.A. in English with a minor in Art History.  I’ve been at CCSU for my whole career, but not always as an English major. I began my studies in the Business Management program but quickly found the arts were more up my alley!

In my free time, you can find me reading, listening to music, watching movies, or hiking.  Most of my interests revolve around experiencing stories and feelings of discovery.  When it comes to a captivating story or setting, I’m enthralled from the very beginning!  Since I was a kid, writing has always been an outlet for me to tell stories or share experiences with others. I love writing; however, I’ll be the first to admit it’s tough. Because of that, I’m more than happy to help with brainstorming and revising: I know where you’re coming from!

Jarryd Saly

aka, The Left-Handed Listener 

Tutor 

they/them/theirs 

 

Hi all! I’m an English major with a minor in Art History. Reading and writing have been a core part of my personality ever since I can remember. My favorite assignments throughout grade school were when we essentially journaled but could write almost anything we wanted. I filled up a substantial number of journals through my elementary and middle school years – and not all of them were half bad! 

 

If I were a writing-themed superhero, my name would be The Left-Handed Lister. Catchy, right? In my approach to tutoring, often the most important thing I can do is listen to a writer talk about their paper. Letting them say what they want to write out loud can be the thing that helps them figure out what goes into their work and how it fits in. 

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