Who We Are

WAC Coordinators

Swan Kim (WAC Fellows & Program Development)

CO 626 x5745

As the coordinator of the Bronx Community College WAC program, my goal is to better assist and serve the needs of Writing Intensive faculty and students on campus and provide pedagogical training and professional development of the Writing Fellows. Having worked at writing programs at University of Virginia, Rutgers at New Brunswick, and New York Institute of Technology, I am interested in identifying and refining a WAC model that best supports BCC. Also building on my experience as a project manager in digital humanities projects, I would like to further promote awareness and use of WAC resources online. I am thrilled to be part of this program and looking forward to work with the WAC Fellows.

Giulia Guarnieri (Assessment & Faculty Development)

CO 236 x5645

In my current role, I provide assistance in the areas of program assessment, faculty development, and data analytics. Prior to joining the WAC program, I led the First-Year Program and created and managed the Podcasting Faculty Seminar, where I oversaw all aspects of the training, evaluation, planning, and assessment. I also serve on the board of the Center for Teaching, Learning and Technology. I was raised in Italy but have been living in the United States for over 20 years. I received a graduate degree in English Language and Literature and a Ph.D. in Romance Languages– at BCC, I am Professor of Italian Language and Literature. I was trained in WAC pedagogy both in graduate school and at Bronx Community College. In addition, I serve as an instructional technology consultant for higher education both in the US and Europe. I look forward to working with all future participating faculty and fellows.

2019-2020 WAC Fellows

Austin Bailey (PhD candidate, English)

Office Hours: CO 233 Thursdays 12-2pm & by appt.

I am a Ph.D. candidate in English at the Graduate Center, CUNY. My dissertation, Radical Empiricism Before William James, argues that four major nineteenth century American authors—Ralph Waldo Emerson, Edgar Allan Poe, Emily Dickinson, and Charlotte Perkins Gilman—radicalize traditional empiricisms by extending their limits and reconstructing their vocabularies. In doing so, the authors under my consideration participate in a unique mode of American empiricism that finds its peak expression in the philosophy of William James. My research adds to ongoing conversations about pragmatism and American Literature and traces a feminist literary contribution to American philosophy largely ignored in previous genealogies. Chapters from my dissertation have been published as articles in ESQ: A Journal of Nineteenth-Century American Literature and Culture and The Pluralist (a journal of philosophy).

I have taught courses in American Literature at Hunter College, composition at the College of Staten Island, and courses in composition and the environmental humanities at New Jersey City University. My teaching philosophy and practice seeks to decenter and deprivilege knowledge as the goal and priority of semester-based learning and instead to center student engagement, affect, and metacognition. To this end, I practice “ungrading.” In my iteration, an ungraded class asks students to generate their own semester goals and self evaluate twice throughout the semester. I emphasize narrative and holistic evaluation over quantitative and/or rubric-based evaluation. I utilize student-centered techniques such as think-pair-share, fishbowling, exit tickets, and role playing exercises.

As a WAC Fellow at BCC, I hope to gain insight into community college education, to learn from others, and to continue to develop as a teacher-scholar.

Allison Cabana (PhD Student, Psychology)

Office Hours: CO 233 Thursdays 12-2pm & by appt.Person looking at the camera smiling

I am a current PhD student in Critical Social/Personality Psychology. My work has focused on participatory epistemology and utilization of mixed methods across research and disciplines. Through various projects, parts of my work as a student has been to explore ways to unsettle knowledge production within the academy.

I have taught as an Adjunct Lecturer in the Health Sciences Department at LaGuardia Community College and the Psychology Department here at Bronx Community College. My pedagogical approach is to engage classrooms with the understanding that each of us brings knowledge to the classroom and to work together toward exploring critical questions.

Elena Chavez Goycochea (PhD candidate, LAILAC)

Office Hours: CO 233 Thursdays 12-2pm & by appt.

I am a Phd candidate in Latin American, Iberian and Latino Cultures at The Graduate Center, The City University of New York (CUNY). My research focuses on the intersection of race, class and gender in the Afro-Latin American feminist writings and video performances from Brazil, Cuba and Perú during transitional periods such as the Cuban Revolution in the 1960s and the end of military regime in Brazil in the early 1980s. I examine the different ways in which artistic manifestations of culture critically shape and resist dictatorial regimes in Latin America, and influences the future cultural policies of the region.

During my doctoral studies, I have taught Spanish and Literature classes at The City College of New York since 2016. Besides teaching, I devote my time to community-building activities such as volunteering in different literacy programs in Harlem and Washington Heights.

My teaching methodology combines a set of principles and methods oriented to promoting a safe and inclusive environment where students’ multicultural backgrounds are validated. As an educator, my goal is to encourage students to express their ideas while applying a set of skills, including critical thinking, critical writing and media literacy as part of the learning process.

As a Writing Fellow at Bronx Community College, I will assist faculty in incorporating the Writing Across the Curriculum pedagogy and writing-oriented teaching techniques into their syllabus. In this role, I also serve as a liaison between the WAC team and the departments of Modern Languages and Chemistry.

Jessie McCormack (Philosophy)

Office Hours: CO 233 Thursdays 8-10am & by appt.

My current dissertation research is in psychosemantics and its relation to questions about consciousness, looking particularly at work by Ruth Millikan and Jaak Panksepp. My other main area of research is on the history of American philosophy, with particular focus on transcendentalism (esp. Emerson), American Pragmatism, and African-American philosophy, and the similarities and differences in these traditions. Prior to becoming a WAC fellow at BCC, I was an instructor at Lehman College, and Virginia Tech– where I received my MA in philosophy (2013)– prior to that.

My pedagogical approach is informed and inspired primarily by Socrates and American philosophers. I focus on getting students to talk about complicated topics in their own voice and integrating their learning into their everyday life, as well as bringing their experiences to bear on intellectual pursuits. I emphasize training skills of critical self-examination– in recognizing what one truly knows and could argue for, versus what we might think we know– and encouragement of genuine curiosity and comfort with admitting and learning from error. I serve as liaison to the Health and History departments.

Marc Cesar Rickenbach (Comparative Literature)

Office Hours: CO 233 Thursdays 12-2pm & by appt.

I am a PhD candidate in Comparative Literature at the Graduate Center, CUNY, where I specialize in postwar German- and French-language literature. My dissertation focuses on the importance that writers give to thinking of ‘atmosphere’ and ‘voice’ as a way to counter what they took to be stale and self-defeating epistemologies that underlay rational modes of critique in the latter half of the 20th century. These include authors Max Frisch, Elias Canetti, Elfriede Jelinek, as well as Alain Robbe-Grillet and composer Karlheinz Stockhausen. In the past I have taught World and German literature at Baruch College, Queens College, and have worked as a Writing-Across-the-Curriculum fellow at LaGuardia Community College.

Currently, at Bronx Community College I serve as the WAC liaison for the Art & Music department. You can reach me at mrickenbach@gradcenter.cuny.edu

Kelsey Swift (PhD candidate, Linguistics)

Office Hours: CO 233 Thursdays 12-2pm & by appt.

I am a PhD candidate in linguistics at the Graduate Center. My work draws from a range of fields, especially education, applied linguistics, and linguistic anthropology, and is focused on the development of adult second language instruction that is empirically motivated and rooted in social justice. My current project uses ethnography and critical discourse analysis to explore the language ideologies at play in an adult ESOL program here in New York.

I have taught undergraduate courses in linguistics at Hunter College, as well as graduate courses in teacher education at City College. I also have experience teaching adult ESOL in a range of community-based programs in New York, Boston, and abroad.

As a WAC fellow, I am particularly interested in supporting linguistic diversity and developing pedagogical strategies which engage and recognize different kinds of knowledge and ways of thinking. I primarily serve as liaison for the Biology and Education departments.

Katherine Volkmer (Comparative Literature)

Office Hours: CO 233 Thurs. 8 am – 10 am & by appt.

I am a PhD student in the Italian Specialization of Comparative Literature at The Graduate Center of CUNY and will graduate with a certificate in Renaissance Studies.

My research interests include: early modern Italian prescriptive literature and its influence on other literary works.  I am also interested in Neoplatonism and Petrarchism and their traces in Italian and Spanish lyric poetry.  The evolution of early modern Italian women writers and transnational literary influence between Italy and Spain are among my other research pursuits.  I enjoy early music,  modern Italian literature from the Risorgimento through the 20th century, and Italian film from Neorealism through the present.

My research and teaching are informed by a diverse background. Currently an adjunct lecturer of Italian language and literature at Hunter College, in previous roles I have designed and led language and literature classes and presented cultural workshops to students of all ages.  I have earned a BA in Italian Studies from Dickinson College, and an MA in International Relations and Economics from The Johns Hopkins University, S.A.I.S. (School for Advanced International Studies). Italian language and culture were also an important skill in my former career in international correspondent banking as a relationship manager, salesperson, and credit analyst.

As a pedagogue, I am especially versatile and adept at teaching in a differentiated classroom and I enjoy creating and implementing new syllabi. I strive to challenge, inspire, and consider each individual student accordingly. I believe in a classroom in which students feel comfortable to participate, move beyond their comfort zone, make mistakes, and grow.

As a WAC fellow at BCC 2019-20, I am pleased to act as liaison for the physics and business departments.



2018-2019 Fellows

  • Gabriel Arce Riocabo
  • Kiki Leung
  • Jessie McCormack
  • Parfait Kouacou, Drexel University
  • Eleanor Luken
  • Katherine Volkmer

2017-2018 Fellows

2016-2017 Fellows

2015-2016 Fellows

2014-2015 Fellows

  • David Bridges
  • Jennifer Chancellor
  • Benjamin Dumbauld
  • Yu-Yun Hsieh
  • Svetlana Jović
  • Michael Polesny
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