Blog Posts by Region
Active student members have the opportunity to serve Sigma Tau Delta on a Society level. Those members who do so gain valuable networking, organizational, and leadership skills that benefit their personal and professional lives.
Student Advisors (SA)
Kaitlynn Sass – Senior Student Advisor
Indiana University of Pennsylvania
Kaitlynn Sass is an MA student in the Composition and Literature program at Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP). An alumna of Clarion University of Pennsylvania, she graduated in May 2017 with a Liberal Arts degree with a concentration in English. While at Clarion, she was a member of the Rho Iota Chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, English Club, Reading for the Cure Breast Cancer Fundraiser, Tobeco Literary and Arts Journal, and the Honors Program. She also worked in the Writing Center. Kaitlynn has continued her work with Sigma Tau Delta at the chapter level with the Xi Xi Chapter at IUP. She also serves as the 2018-2019 vice president of IUP’s English Graduate Organization. Her interests include young adult literature and LGBTQIA+ studies. She hopes to eventually earn her PhD and become a college professor.
Kaitlynn is excited to continue her term as Student Advisor. She looks forward to working with Amanda Ayers, the Student Leadership committee, and all members of Sigma Tau Delta to promote communication within the society, foster service, and to build chapter relationships.
Amanda Ayers – Junior Student Advisor
University of North Georgia, Gainesville Campus
Amanda Ayers graduated from the University of North Georgia, Gainesville Campus in spring 2019 and, effective fall 2019, will be an MA student in the Rhetoric and Composition program at Florida State University. Before returning to the academy, Amanda worked in the nonprofit sector for seven years as a communication coordinator and program manager. In spring 2019, she graduated with a Bachelor’s in English Writing and Publication from the University of North Georgia in her hometown, Gainesville, GA. During her undergrad years, she was active as the Community Engagement Coordinator for the Alpha Upsilon Phi Chapter of Sigma Tau Delta where she focused on building community and promoting service. She also worked as a Supplemental Instruction facilitator and mentor, the English Department student assistant, and a Writing Fellow. As an aspiring composition professor with sights set on earning a PhD, her research interests focus on bodies in digital, academic, and religious spaces.
Amanda is honored and eager to begin her term as Student Advisor. Throughout her time in the position, she hopes to emphasize service, community, and excellent communication.
Student Representatives (SRs) and
Associate Student Representatives (ASRs)
Alex McCarron – Student Representative (SR)
Alex McCarron is a student at Shepherd University in Shepherdstown, WV, who enjoys studying English, American, and Young Adult literature. She has been a member of Sigma Tau Delta since spring 2018 and has presented at the 2018 and 2019 West Virginia Literary Symposiums, as well as at the Sigma Tau Delta 2019 International Convention. In her free time, Alex enjoys reading, writing, bingeing her favorite TV shows, and listening to music.
McKenzie Rodriguez – Associate Student Representative (ASR)
McKenzie Rodriguez will graduate in spring 2020 from Clarion University of Pennsylvania with a degree in Secondary English Education and a minor in Spanish. She is the President of both the English Club and the Rho Iota Chapter of Sigma Tau Delta. McKenzie works at the Clarion Community Learning Workshop and she assists local children in the area with their homework and tutoring needs. She is also an advocate with PASSAGES Inc., (Prevention and Service for Sexual Assault through Guidance, Empowerment, and Support) where she helps survivors of sexual violence by taking hotline calls, assisting at the hospital, and giving emotional support. In her spare time, McKenzie likes to relax with a good book, sing karaoke with her friends, and spend time with family. Her hope is to have a classroom of her own where students can feel inspired and empowered through literature.
Far Western Region
Julie Handy – Student Representative (SR)
Dixie State University
Saint George, UT
Julie Handy is currently attending Dixie State University in Southern Utah. She will graduate with her Bachelor’s in English and a minor in communication. Julie started as the Vice President of the Alpha Pi Epsilon Chapter and is currently the chapter’s President. She was the Young Adult Assistant Editor on the Southern Quill for the 2019 edition of the journal. After completing her degree, she will pursue her education further by obtaining her Juris Doctorate Degree or her Master’s in English.
She loves being outside, and grew up fly fishing, boating, and hiking. Reading has always been a large part of her life and she agrees with George R.R. Martin, “A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. . . . The man who never reads lives only one.”
Amanda Chappell – Associate Student Representative (ASR)
Saint Martin’s University
Amanda Chappell is a senior English major at Saint Martin’s University in Lacey, WA. She was inducted into the honor society in fall 2017 and was her chapter’s Vice President that same year. Since then, Amanda has presented creative works at two Sigma Tau Delta conventions, worked as a section editor for her school’s newspaper, and currently serves as the Senator of Arts and Sciences on Student Government. Amanda is interested in the genre of creative non-fiction and memoir studies, and plans to pursue an MA in English literature. She hopes to transition into the field of publishing after her schooling and publish a memoir herself one day. Mental health advocacy is extremely important to Amanda, and she strives to convey that in her writing.
High Plains Region
Jessica Trad – Student Representative (SR)
Jessica Trad is a senior at Hastings College with a major in English and emphasis in Writing. She is the President of the Alpha Alpha Psi Chapter of Sigma Tau Delta and has been an active member of Student Judiciary Council, the Honors Program, Alpha Chi, Omicron Delta Kappa, and Campus Tree Advisory Committee. Previously, she was employed as a content writer for a local newspaper. She is now employed at her school’s library and works as a tutor in the writing center. She enjoys traveling and was awarded a fellowship to work as an intern with an environmental group in Ireland last year.
Jessica plans to pursue a PhD in English literature, with a probable focus in modernism. She is excited to assume the role of Student Representative and encourage regional and societal involvement.
Natalie Wolf – Associate Student Representative (ASR)
Kansas State University
Natalie Wolf is currently a senior at Kansas State University majoring in Creative Writing and Spanish with minors in History and Nonprofit Leadership. She joined the Alpha Theta Eta Chapter of Sigma Delta Pi in fall 2018 and is excited to be involved in this organization! At Kansas State, Natalie also enjoys being involved in Sigma Delta Pi, Spanish Club, and Students for Environmental Action. She is currently hoping to attend graduate school to pursue studies in Creative Writing, Linguistics, Teaching English as a Foreign Language, or some combination of the above. In her free time, she enjoys reading, crafting, and spending time with friends, both human and feline.
Apryl Moore – Student Representative (SR)
Western Illinois University
Apryl Moore is a junior attending Western Illinois University where she studies English and Professional Writing. She joined the Phi Delta Chapter of Sigma Tau Delta in 2018 and served as Vice President for the 2018-19 school year. She plans to serve as her chapter’s 2019-2020 President. In addition to Sigma Tau Delta, Apryl is involved with her university’s Mock Trial Team where she travels and competes with other universities.
In her free time, Apryl enjoys writing creative nonfiction, listening to music, and spending time with her dog.
Vanessa Macias Arias – Associate Student Representative (ASR)
Northeastern Illinois University
Vanessa Macias Arias will earn her Bachelor’s Degree this summer with a double major in English and History at Northeastern Illinois University (NEIU) in Chicago, IL. She was an active council member for the Phi Upsilon Chapter for Sigma Tau Delta and a member of the Phi Alpha Theta National History Honor Society. She was a First-Year Experience (FYE) Peer Mentor and Lead Peer Mentor, offering academic support and guidance to first-year undergraduate students, and training other Peer Mentors. She also worked as a writing tutor at the NEIU Learning Success Center, and was a Student Ambassador. Vanessa was awarded the Golden Eagle Award for showing exceptional leadership skills. After graduation, she plans on attending graduate or law school. Her dream careers include becoming a lawyer, an undergraduate professor, and eventually working in policy in education.
Madison Whatley – Student Representative (SR)
Saint Leo University
Saint Leo, FL
Madison Whatley is a Senior at Saint Leo University studying English Literature and Creative Writing. She is the president of the Alpha Alpha Alpha Chapter of Sigma Tau Delta as well as an editor at Saint Leo’s student newspaper, The Lions’ Pride, and an intern at Saint Leo’s literary journal, The Sandhill Review. Madison lives in Tampa, FL, where she enjoys reading and writing poetry.
Jennifer Harris – Associate Student Representative (ASR)
University of North Georgia, Gainesville Campus
Jennifer Harris is a senior studying English with a concentration in Writing and Publication at the University of North Georgia (UNG), Gainesville. She joined Sigma Tau Delta’s Alpha Upsilon Phi Chapter in Spring 2017 and served as Vice President and interim President during the 2017-2018 school year. Jennifer is also the editor of UNG’s student news, the Vanguard; a peer mentor with UNG’s English department; a McNair Scholar; and has served as an embedded tutor with UNG’s Writing Fellows program. She is actively engaged in undergraduate research and has presented at the regional, national, and international levels.
As the Southern ASR, Jennifer hopes to help strengthen the community of scholars within her region by encouraging local chapters to participate in regional conferences, apply for project grants, and host common reader events.
Claire Seale – Student Representative (SR)
Ouachita Baptist University
Claire Seale is a junior English major and Business Administration minor at Ouachita Baptist University. She has been actively involved in her sorority, the Women of EEE, chairing as the online head and being involved in multiple committees. She also enjoys serving the elderly in her community. In the next year Claire will attend to her duties as Southwestern SR, write her honor’s thesis, and begin applying for graduate programs. In the future, Claire aspires to become a lawyer and Young Adult fiction writer. In her free time Claire has a photography business, plays the guitar, and reads any books outside of her collegiate studies. Claire is thrilled to begin her term as Southwestern Representative.
Maria Rossini – Associate Student Representative (ASR)
University of Dallas
Maria Rossini is an undergraduate at the University of Dallas, where she majors in English and concentrates in Latin. She is a member of her Sigma Tau Delta chapter as well as the junior editor of OnStage, a campus-wide dramaturgical magazine. She is a Resident Assistant and has begun a film and lecture series on her campus called Femininity in Film. In spring 2018, she studied abroad in Rome for a semester, where she studied art, history, and literature. This summer, she is studying at a political institute, and upon graduation, Maria desires to pursue graduate school in an interdisciplinary program studying politics, philosophy, and literature. In her spare time, she loves to write, drink coffee, and spend quality time with dogs.
Maria is excited to create a cohesive and vibrant identity for the Southwestern Region of Sigma Tau Delta.