Blog

My name is Celena Todora, and I am a fourth-year PhD student in the English Department’s Composition Program. My dissertation explores how activists working within the field of prison education—whether through community or university efforts—employ, experience, and navigate institutional and aboliti...
My name is Brittney Knotts, and I am currently a fourth-year doctoral candidate in English Critical and Cultural Studies with a focus on children’s studies. Coming from a background in elementary education and afterschool work with elementary-aged children, my work is always heavily influenced by wh...
My name is Ben Naismith, and I am a fourth-year PhD candidate in the Department of Linguistics at the University of Pittsburgh. Prior to undertaking a PhD, I had spent 15 years in the field of Teaching English as a Foreign Language (EFL), and it is this professional experience which has shaped my re...
My name is Amanda Dibando Awanjo, and I am a fifth-year doctoral candidate in the English Department. My research moves in and out of the archive to explore W.E.B Du Bois’ 1927 question, “What will people say in a hundred years of Black Americans?” Focusing on depictions of Black women and girls, I...
My name is Samuel Boateng. I am a Ghanaian pianist, composer, and fifth-year PhD candidate in the Jazz Studies program within the Department of Music at the University of Pittsburgh. Additionally, I am in the process of obtaining the African Studies doctoral certificate. After completing my comprehe...
My name is Alyssa Quintanilla, and I’m a fifth-year PhD Candidate in the Department of English at the University of Pittsburgh. I am one of the recipients of the Humanities Engage Immersive Dissertation Research Fellowship for AY 2020-21. My dissertation “A Matter of Waste and Bodies” explores the u...
To briefly introduce myself, my name is Ben Naismith, and I am a fourth-year PhD student in the Department of Linguistics at Pitt. I am somewhat atypical for my program in that I am a mature student returning to school after nearly 20 years as a professional in the field of teaching English as a for...
As a Humanities Engage Collections-Based Curriculum Development Grant recipient and 7th-year doctoral student in the History of Art and Architecture department, I worked with Professor Jennifer Josten (HAA) to develop a ne...
In my previous blog post, I introduced my collaboration with Professor Barbara McCloskey, whose course Foundations of Art History is being taught digitally for the first ti...
 “I have worked on several research projects on theater concerning HIV/AIDS. When it comes to theater concerning HIV/AIDS, the pieces that are shown in the historical record overwhelmingly deal with the perspective of gay white men with AIDS, most among them being upper-middle class or wealthy...
Amidst so much turbulence, I’ve been grateful to be developing a course that considers the intersection of science and democracy, and that centers the arts’ and humanities’ role in responding to uncertainty, injustice, and oppression. This work feels especially personal under the current circumstanc...
Elizabeth Pitts, assistant professor of English, and I discussed the course she’s working on this summer, “Science, Humanities, and Public Engagement.” The course will be offered in conjunction with the exhibit she...
This module focused on the Image of the Black in Western Art, a collection of nearly 25,000 images that is considered to be the authoritative reference on representations of Blackness and Black people in Western Art from antiquity to the...
As I contemplated how I wanted to enter my 2nd year as an English Writing and Composition PhD student, I prioritized securing an internship with an organization aligned with my research interests, gaining experience with qualitative research methods, and polishing my proposal. I am interested in ins...