The Center has an incredibly diverse staff. Our advisers are not all English majors; in fact, this year we have advisers concentrating in theatre, politics, theology, integral, math, health science, and more! We also have several Graduate advisers from the MFA in Creative Writing program. Take some time to look through the bios and get to know us!

 Spring 2014 Staff dressed as their favorite authors and characters






adviser profile photo

Audrey Agot

Year: Senior
Major: English
Hometown: Vallejo, CA
Favorite Books: Lullaby by Chuck Palahniuk, Everything Matters by Ron Currie Jr., This Is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper, Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston, Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
Favorite Movies: Rebel Without A Cause, Django, 500 Days of Summer, The Little Rascals
Favorite Revision tools: Asking questions
Favorite Food: Regular wings: half lemon pepper, half original hot, ranch dressing, with Cherry Coke, from Wing Stop.
Favorite Quotations: "Genius might be the ability to say a profound thing in a simple way." - Charles Bukowski
"You may shoot me with your words, / You may cut me with your eyes, / You may kill me with your hatefulness, but still, like air, I'll rise." - Maya Angelou

Madeline Bell

Year: Senior Madeline Bell - Lead Writing Adviser
Major: Health Science/Pre-Med
Minor: Spanish
Hometown: Ventura, CA
Favorite Books: The Moral Lives of Animals by Dale Peterson, Molokai by Alan Brennert & House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski
Favorite Movies: The Shining, Titanic, Moulin Rouge, The Room, Frankenweenie & The Nightmare Before Christmas
Favorite Revision Tool: Making charts and lists to organize ideas
Favorite Quotation: "For small creatures such as we, the vastness is bearable only through love." - Carl Sagan

Meg Birgen

Year: Junior
Major: Integral Program
Hometown: San Dimas
Favorite Books: Frankenstein, Picture of Dorian Gray, The Hobbit, Harry Potter, anything by Tamora Pierce
Favorite Movies: Disney. Spirited Away, Pacific Rim, Avengers, Captain America, Thor, Iron Man
Favorite Revision Tool: Reading out loud
Favorite Quotations: "But within our limitations, there is no limit to how beautiful we can become." Cecil Palmer (Welcome to Night Vale)   "I am so clever that sometimes I don't understand a single word of what I am saying." -Oscar Wilde

Maddie Chastain

Year: Junior
Major: English
Minor: Theology and Religious Studies
Hometown: Tracy, CA
Favorite Books: The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom, The Giver by Lois Lowry, the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling, A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket, The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey
Favorite Movies: Forrest Gump, A League of Their Own, The Prince of Egypt, Pixar’s Cars, Meet the Robinsons, Tangled, Dodgeball: An Underdog Story, Star Wars
Favorite Revisions Tools: A pen with a plethora of ink left in it.
Favorite Quotations: “And each affects the other and the other affects the next, and the world is full of stories but the stories are all one.” --Mitch Albom. “I don’t know if we each have a destiny, or if we’re all just floatin’ around accidental-like on a breeze, but I...I think maybe it’s both. Maybe both is happening at the same time.”-- Forrest Gump

adviser profile photo

CJ Cosas

Year: Senior
Major: English
Minor: Sociology
Hometown: Concord, CA
Favorite Books: Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, Ishmael by Daniel Quinn, Yakuza Moon by Shoko Tendo
Favorite Movies: Hitch, Hercules, & Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children
Favorite Revision Tools: Ctrl+F (Find) & ctrl+Z (Undo)
Favorite Quotation: "If you want a happy ending, that depends, of course, on where you stop your story." - Orson Welles

Jaq Davis

Year: Senior
Major: English
Minor: Psychology
Hometown: Sonora, CA
Favorite Books: The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, My First Summer in the Sierra by John Muir
Favorite Movies: 500 Days of Summer, It’s Kind of a Funny Story, & Up
Favorite Revision Tools: Writing Research Papers Across the Curriculum by Susan Hubbach & The Elements of Style by William Strunk & E.B. White
Favorite Quotation: “Let the refining and improving of your own life keep you so busy that you have little time to criticize others.” – H. Jackson Brown Jr.

Holland Enke

Year: Senior
Major: English
Minor: Art History
Hometown: Fullerton, CA
Favorite Books: Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte & Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
Favorite Play: Angels in America (play) by Tony Kushner
Favorite Movies: The Bird Cage, Pride & Prejudice & Young Victoria
Favorite Revision Tool: Questions (An open dialogue between an adviser and a student always leads to easy grammar fixes and great discussions about ideas!)
Favorite Quotations: "I’m not telling you it’s going to be easy. I’m telling you it’s going to be worth it.” – Unknown
“What seems to us as bitter trials are often blessings in disguise.” – Oscar Wilde

David Fujii

Year: Senior
Major: English
Hometown: San Jose, CA
Favorite Books: The Trumpeter Swan, The Way of the Peaceful Warrior, The Voyage of Dawn Treader, A Series of Unfortunate Events
Favorite Movies: Frozen, Rush Hour, Spiderman, Avengers, Castle in the Sky, Inception
Favorite Revision Tool: Post-outlining
Favorite Quotation: "Yesterday was history, tomorrow is a mystery, and today is a gift; that is why they call it present."


JenJen Herrington—Administrative Assistant

Hometown: Troy, NY, & Plainfield, VT
Favorite Books: The Ecology of Freedom: The Emergence and Dissolution of Hierarchy by Murry Bookchin & The Monster at the End of This Book by Jon Stone
Favorite Movie: Fargo
Favorite Revision Tool: Pruning the redundant.
Favorite Quotation: "There is nowhere you can go and only be with people who are like you. Give it up." - Bernice Johnson Reagon
In Her Own Words: Do what you can, and don't get upset.

Annie Keig

Year: Sophomore
Major: Environmental Studies
Minor: English
Hometown: Monterey
Favorite Books: Sirens of Titan, Ender’s Game, 1Q84
Favorite Movies: Shawshank Redemption, Bandits, Indiana Jones (all but the 4th. We don’t talk about that one)
Favorite Revisions Tools: Highlighters
Favorite Quotations: “If you have good thoughts they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely” - Roald Dahl

Andy Kirkpatrick

Year: Junior
Major: English
Minor: Business
Hometown: Orinda
Favorite Book: Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
Favorite Movie: Seven Samurai
Favorite Revision Tool: Post-outlining

Tereza Joy Kramer—Director Director Tereza Kramer

Poetry, Rhetoric, Composition, TESOL, Journalis m, Spanish
Hometown: Cleveland, OH
Favorite Book (nonfiction): Ethics for the New Millenium by Dalai Lama
Favorite Poet: Sharon Olds
Favorite Movie: The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Favorite Revision Tool: Discussion
Favorite Quotation: "Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us ... . And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automaticallly liberates others." - Marianne Williamson
In Her Own Words: I've never thought of myself as a good writer -- I just enjoy trying. 

Heather Marsh

Year: Senior
Major: English
Minor: Theology & Religious Studies
Hometown: Azusa, CA
Favorite Books: Dragonriders of Pern series by Anne McCaffrey, Harry Potter series, Magi: The Labyrinth of Magic, Divergent by Veronica Roth, Beloved by Toni Morrison, anything by Tamora Pierce
Favorite Movies: All the Marvel movies, Forrest Gump, How to Train Your Dragon, Aladdin, Miyazaki films, 27 Dresses, Pacific Rim
Favorite Revision Tools: Post-outlining, whiteboards
Favorite Quotations: "You cannot change the world alone. That's what makes it so special." - L: L Change the World
"If you reach for the stars, all you get are the stars. But if you reach for the heavens, you get the stars thrown in." - Mary Poppins

Adviser Shane McCarthyShane McCarthy

Year: Junior
Major: Integral
Hometown: Elk, CA
Favorite Books: Windup Bird Chronicles, The Martian Chronicles, Cats Cradle, Slaughter House-5, Catch-22, Dune, 1Q84, Plato
Favorite Movies: Miyazaki films, Limitless, Troy, Gladiator, Glory, Cloud Atlas, The Matrix
Favorite Revision Tool: Post-outlining
Favorite Quotation: "Don't ever let the fact that you can't be perfect stop you from doing your best."

Amanda Muña

Year: Junior
Major: Integral
Hometown: Yigo, Guam
Favorite Books: Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut, Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf, Ishmael by Daniel Quinn, The Complete Poems of Sappho
Favorite Movies: Princess Bride, Juno, The Breakfast Club, Trainspotting, Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World, Penelope
Favorite Revisions Tools: Conversation! :)
Favorite Quotations: “So here’s my advice: study broadly and without fear. Learn a language if you can because that will make your life more interesting. Read a little bit every day. But most importantly try to surround yourself with people you like and make cool stuff with them. In the end – at least in my experience – what you do isn’t going to be nearly as interesting or important as who you do it with.” – John Green, from “What To Do With Your Life” [Vlog]

Erica Musgrave

Year: Junior
Major: Mathematics
Hometown: Lodi, CA
Favorite Books: Les Miserables, Count of Monte Cristo, A Tale of Two Cities
Favorite Movies: The Bourne Series, Tangled, Megamind, Lord of the Rings, Pirates of the Caribbean
Favorite Revisions Tools: Reading out loud, highlighters, whiteboards, outlines
Favorite Quotations: “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people will not feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone and as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” - Marianne Williamson

Reyna Olegario

Reyna Olegario

Year: Graduate
Major: English, Preparation for High School Teaching
Minor: Theology and Religious Studies, Catholic Tradition
Hometown: Hercules, CA
Favorite Books (fiction): Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling, Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger, & Looking for Alaska by John Green
Favorite Plays: Saved by Edward Bond & Titus Andronicus by William Shakespeare
Favorite Movies: The Lion King, Maria Full of Grace, & Inception
Favorite Revision Tools: Ctrl + F (find) & Color-coding ideas
Favorite Quotation: “Maybe our favorite quotations say more about us than about the stories and people we’re quoting.” – John Green, from "Quotations (And Holden Hats)" [Vlog]
In Her Own Words: Sometimes I talk in circles, sometimes I use large hand gestures, and sometimes I use cat examples.

Rebecca Patterson

Year: Junior
Major: Accounting and English Double Major
Hometown: San Jose, CA
Favorite Books: Pride and Prejudice, The Harry Potter Series, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
Favorite Movies: Howl’s Moving Castle, Spirited Away, Much Ado About Nothing, Sense and Sensibility
Favorite Revisions Tools: Reading out loud, whiteboards.
Favorite Quotations: “There’s nothing to fear but fear itself.” –President Franklin D. Roosevelt. “I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading! How much sooner one tires of anything than of a book!” –Jane Austen

Ruth Sylvester

Year: Junior
Major: English
Hometown: Woodburn, Oregon
Favorite Books: When Captain Flint Was Still a Good Man by Nick Dybek, Mink River by Brian Doyle, Ask Me: 100 Essential Poems by William Stafford, Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett
Favorite Movies: A Knight’s Tale, How to Train Your Dragon, Big Fish, Meet the Robinsons, Catch Me if You Can, 10 Things I Hate About You
Favorite Revisions Tools: Reading out loud, sticky notes, highlighters
Favorite Quotations: “The truth may be out there, but the lies are inside your head.” -- Terry Pratchett. “Another flaw in the human character is that everybody wants to build and nobody wants to do maintenance.” -- Kurt Vonnegut.

Caitlin Wire Adviser Caitlin Wire

Year: Senior
Major: Politics 
Minor: Italian Studies
Hometown: Thousand Oaks, CA
Favorite Books: Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling; The Lord of the Rings Trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien; The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley; Race, Class & Gender: an Anthology; the Millenium trilogy by Stieg Larsson; The Road by Cormac McCarthy; basically anything written by Anne Phillips, political theorist 
Favorite Movies: What's Eating Gilbert Grape, Finding Neverland, 3:10 to Yuma, Benny and Joon, The Pianist, The Dark Knight Trilogy, Annie Hall, Pan's Labyrinth, film adaptations of the above books
Favorite TV Shows: Sherlock, Downton Abbey, Game of Thrones, Breaking Bad, Everybody Loves Raymond, Archer, Fawlty Towers
Favorite Revision Tool: Reading and rereading and rereading!
Favorite Quotations: "Hope is the thing with feathers - / That perches in the soul - / And sings the tunes without the words - / And never stops - at all -" -Emily Dickinson
"...Not all those who wander are lost..." -J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring
Maps & Directories

Mailing Address

Saint Mary's College of California
1928 Saint Mary's Road
Moraga, CA 94575
(925) 631-4000
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