Julia Bleakney is the Writing Center Director in the Center for Writing Excellence and an Assistant Professor of English at Elon University, North Carolina. Her PhD is from the University of Minnesota. She has directed writing centers since 2004 at three institutions: a suburban community college in Southern California; a large private Research 1 in Northern California; and now at Elon, a mid-sized comprehensive liberal arts university.
Julia's research interests are focused on writing center tutor education and pedagogy, student leadership, and writing beyond the university; she has published in the Writing Center Journal, WLN: A Journal of Writing Center Scholarship, Praxis: A Writing Center Journal, and Southern Discourse in the Center. She was co-chair of the 2018 and 2019 International Writing Centers Association Summer Institute and is co-chair of the 2019–2021 Research Seminar at Elon on Writing Beyond the University: Fostering Writers' Lifelong Learning and Agency. Julia met Michelle and Maria through the IWCA's Northern California regional affiliate organization, which is when we hatched this blog research project.
Michelle Hager is the Writing Center Director at San José State University. She earned her BA and MA in English and certificate in Professional and Technical Writing from San José State University. She has been teaching college-level writing for over 12 years, and she has over 10 years of experience in writing center administration. Prior to becoming the Writing Center Director in July 2013, she served for four years as the Writing Center Associate Director. She has also worked with the SJSU Writing Across the Curriculum program to develop and supervise a course-embedded writing tutors program (Writing Fellows), which is now housed in the Writing Center.
Michelle has presented at national and regional conferences, including the Conference on College Composition and Communication (CCCC), the Northern California Writing Centers Association Conference (NCWCA), the Young Rhetoricians' Conference (YRC), the Foreign Language Education Symposium (FLEDS), and the Asian Pacific Americans in Higher Education Conference (APAHE). She is currently conducting multiple research projects related to writing centers. In 2019, she served as the program chair for the NCWCA Conference, hosted at San José State University.
Maria Judnick is the Coordinator of Digital Initiatives at San José State University's Writing Center and an English Lecturer at Santa Clara University. She earned an MA in English and Comparative Literature from San José State University along with an MFA in Creative Nonfiction from St. Mary's College of California. Besides teaching California and sustainability-themed composition courses, Maria also teaches upper-division creative writing and engineering communication classes. She has presented at many local conferences and creative writing readings. She is also the editor for the SJSU Writing Center Blog The Write Attitude and has received multiple grants from SCU to study multimodal projects in the college classroom.
Maria is the former Co-President of the Young Rhetoricians' Conference. Since 2008, she has served as the Project Coordinator for seven National Endowment for the Humanities Institutes for teachers (three on "John Steinbeck, the Voice of a Region, a Voice for America" and four on "The California Immigrant Experience in Literature and Theatre"). Maria is a freelance writer and is finishing her first novel.