I earned my Masters Degree in English Literature from California State University, Long Beach, and following 4 years of part time teaching at CSULB and Santa Ana College, I was hired full time at Long Beach City College in 2001. Long Beach City is one of the most diversified campuses in America, a quality that I thoroughly enjoy because it offers many chances for me to utilize the cultural experiences gained from many years of travel and living abroad.
As an undergraduate student, I lived in London and studied at the University of London, Bloomsbury, in the heart of literary London. During that time, I traveled to Paris, Amsterdam, Brussels, Rome (where I was blessed by Pope John Paul II at an Easter service), Moscow and St Petersburg (where I walked on the frozen Gulf of Finland), as well as Wales and Scotland. In my graduate program, I studied at the University of Wollongong, in Australia, which offered me the chance to dive both the Great Barrier Reef, as well as the Fijian Islands. Those experience lead me to reframe my work philosophy: work to afford travel because it is the best education possible. This is a primary focus of my classes as well, and I can proudly boast at having inspired many students to travel and study abroad.
This quest for foreign experiences also lead to my first sabbatical project, a global research quest for mythology in Japan, Guatemala, New Zealand, Ireland, Scotland, and Australia, (of course). In 2015-16 I continued that research in Kenya, Tanzania, Scotland, New Zealand and Australia, seeking creation and heroic myths of these cultures. These experiences form the internal foundation of my lectures and are my students’ favorite portions of my lectures.
In addition to my research, I also have served my college for 5 years as the Course Evaluation subcommittee chair, under the Curriculum Committee. As the English Majors and Minors advisor, I received the best club advisor award in 2012 for my work as the English Majors and Minors advisor, as well as the Most Inspiring Advisor in 2013. I also provide workshops through the Cal State University Chancellor’s Office, training high school teachers to teach the Expository Reading and Writing Program. And in addition to that, I also serve as a Reviewer for the Community College Chancellor’s Office in the C-ID (California Identification System).
Aside from my college duties, I spend my free time running and teaching fitness classes at my gym. I hold fitness certifications in Les Mills Body Pump, CX Worx, Spinning, and Rowbics. Some of my proudest accomplishments are running a sub-4 hour marathon in Santa Barbara in 2013 (and that was one hilly course!) and winning the Ragnar Vail Lake Push-Up Contest in October 2014. I love to challenge myself, and I frequently use my own personal goals, accomplishments and even my failures as illustrations in my lectures.