This event has been postponed to Summer 2025.

Workshop Facilitators

Photo of Writer Lauren Markham ROW

Lauren Markham

Lauren Markham is the author of A Map of Future Ruins: On Borders and Belonging, which Kirkus reviews has called “a remarkable, unnerving, and cautionary portrait of a global immigration crisis,” which was published by Riverhead Books in February 2024.


A fiction writer, essayist and journalist, her work most often concerns issues related to youth, migration, the environment and her home state of California. Markham’s first book, The Far Away Brothers: Two Young Migrants and the Making of an American Life (Crown, September 2017) was the winner of the 2018 Ridenhour Book Prize, the Northern California Book Award, and a California Book Award Silver Prize. 


Markham has reported from the border regions of Greece and Mexico and Thailand and Texas; from arctic Norway; from gang-controlled regions of El Salvador; from depopulating towns in rural Sardinia and rural Guatemala, too; from home school havens in southern California; from imperiled forests in Oregon and Washington. Her writing has appeared in Harper's, The New York Times Magazine, The GuardianThe New York Review of BooksThe New Republic, Mother Jones, Orion, The Atlantic, The Best American Travel Writing 2019, and on This American Life. 


In addition to writing, Markham has spent fifteen years working at the intersection of education and immigration. She teaches in the Saint Mary’s MFA in Creative Writing Program.

Marcello Hernandez Castillo Writer ROW

Marcelo Hernandez Castillo

Marcelo Hernandez Castillo is the author of Children of the Land: a Memoir (Harper Collins, 2020); Cenzontle (BOA editions, 2018), which Brenda Shaughnessy selected as the winner of the 2017 A. Poulin, Jr. Prize; and Dulce (Northwestern University Press, 2018), winner of the Drinking Gourd Prize. His work has been adapted to opera through a collaboration with the composer Reinaldo Moya. Additionally, Castillo is the translator of work from the Argentinian modernist poet, Jacobo Fijman, and is currently at work translating the poems of the contemporary Mexican Peruvian poet Yaxkin Melchy. 


Castillo is a founding member of the Undocupoets, which eliminated citizenship requirements from all major poetry book prizes in the U.S., and was recognized with the Barnes and Noble Writers for Writers Award. He was the first undocumented student to graduate from the Helen Zell Writers’ Program at the University of Michigan and lives in Northern California where he serves as the poet laureate of Yuba and Sutter Counties. 


Castillo currently teaches at Saint Mary’s College of California.


Guest Speakers

An accomplished writer smiles at the camera

Vanessa Hua

Vanessa Hua is an award-winning, best-selling author. Her novel, Forbidden City—called “magnificent” by Publisher’s Weekly, a “new classic” by the San Francisco Chronicle, and “masterful” by the Washington Post— is a national bestseller and was a finalist for the Northern California Book Award. Her novel, A River of Stars, was named to the Washington Post and NPR’s Best Books of 2018 lists, and has been called a "marvel" by O, The Oprah Magazine, and "delightful" by The Economist. Her short story collection, Deceit and Other Possibilities,New York Times Editors' Choice, received an Asian/Pacific American Award in Literature and was a finalist for a California Book Award, and a New American Voices Award. 

Manjula Martin Writer ROW

Manjula Martin

Manjula Martin is author of The Last Fire Season: A Personal and Pyronatural History. She is coauthor of Fruit Trees for Every Garden, which won the 2020 American Horticultural Society Book Award. Martin edited the anthology Scratch: Writers, Money, and the Art of Making a Living, and she was managing editor of the National Magazine Award–winning literary journal Zoetrope: All-Story. She lives in western Sonoma County, California.

Jonathan Montoya Headshot

Jonathan Lee Montoya

Jonathan Lee Montoya is a Visiting Scholar in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Stanford University. He studies equitable pathways in STEM disciplines at the intersection of Engineering and Computer Science Education. Montoya is a practitioner at heart. He holds secondary teaching credentials in Biological Sciences, Geosciences, and Career Technical Education. He has also taught Virtual Design and Construction. Montoya received his Ph.D. and M.A. in Education from the University of California, Irvine, where he was an NSF Ridge to Reef Scholar and Eugene Cota-Robles Scholar. Montoya also holds an M.A. in STEEM education from Santa Clara University, where he was an NSF Robert Noyce Teacher Scholar. Jonathan received his B.S. in Environmental Sciences with an emphasis in Ethics at Cal Poly Humboldt. He also studied Botany and Environmental Education in Argentina and Chile. Montoya will be starting a full time, tenure-track faculty appointment in the Department of Teacher Education at Saint Mary's College in July 2024.