Meet the 2015-2016 Digital Rhetoric Collaborative Fellows

Hosted by the Sweetland Center for Writing, the Digital Rhetoric Collaborative (DRC) is an online, community webspace by and for scholars and teachers working in computers and writing and digital rhetoric, and a digital book series with the U-M Press.


This summer, the DRC welcomed its third cohort of graduate student Fellows! The program aims to recognize graduate students around the country currently working in digital rhetoric who want practical experience in online publishing and website development. Fellows are selected on a yearly basis by the editors and board of the DRC, and receive an annual stipend of $500 as well as recognition on the DRC website.

DRC Fellows commit to attending monthly online team meetings to plan projects that extend the DRC website and its contributions to the community of computers and writing. They work independently and collaboratively to complete two projects within the year of their term. Last year’s Fellows initiated the #DRCchats series, both on Twitter and Google Hangout, that bring together groups of researchers, teachers, and students around a particular theme for a real-time online conversation.

They also substantially developed the DRC Wiki and hosted the first-ever DRC Wiki Quest at the 2015 Computers and Writing Conference, a live, interactive game that offered participants prizes and a chance to level up each time they edited or added to the DRC Wiki. They also hosted blog carnivals – series of invited blog posts around a specific topic – on social justice-oriented gaming and the intersections of multilingualism and multimodality. Our new Fellows are continuing these initiatives, and expanding our audience, with the current DRC blog carnival on “Digital Writing in K-12 Communities”, as well as new Tool Review Tuesday posts and Webtexts of the Month.

Hosts and followers of the Digital Rhetoric Collaborative look forward to seeing how they will continue to build out the site between now and next August.

This year’s fellows are:

Cohn_Jenae-225x300Jenae Cohn is a PhD student in English, pursuing a designated emphasis in Writing, Rhetoric, and Composition, at the University of California, Davis. She is currently researching the rhetoric of loss around the shift from print to digital culture, but she is also interested in hybrid and online learning and instructional design. Beyond serving as a fellow for the DRC, she serves a graduate writing fellow in UC Davis’ Writing Across the Curriculum program, manages the UC Davis undergraduate student blog, Aggie Voices, and blogs intermittently at

BrandyDeiterly-300x300Brandy Dieterle is a doctoral student in the Texts & Technology program at the University of Central Florida (UCF). At UCF, Brandy has been a graduate student tutor in the University Writing Center and has taught first-year composition courses. As a teacher, Brandy encourages students to think of writing and literacy as both self representation and identity forming. Her research is focused on identity and self representation, gender identity and representation, multimodality and new media, and digital rhetoric.

LeighMeredith-290x300Leigh Meredith is a PhD candidate in Rhetoric and Public Culture at Northwestern University. Her research and teaching interests center around digital and technological rhetorics, identity discourses, and intersections between old and new media. Her dissertation project explores rhetorics of evidence and identification in U.S. public culture, and examines the role of digital writing and reading practices in reshaping ideas about and approaches to individual identity. As the Coordinator of Northwestern’s Public Speaking program and a Northwestern Searle Teaching Mentor, she is also committed to helping graduate students engage digital writing pedagogies across the curriculum, and specifically in communication as well as composition-specific courses. You can find more about her research and teaching online at

Miller1Paula Miller is an English PhD graduate fellow in Rhetoric, Composition and Literacy at The Ohio State University. Her research interests sit at the intersection of writing center studies and digital media studies, interests informed by over a decade of writing center work. In her free time, she enjoys writing music and playing with new technologies. You can find her full CV on her website

NathanRiggs-300x300Nathan Riggs is a doctoral student in the Rhetorics, Communication and Information Design program at Clemson University. His current research focuses on the convergence of simulation, cognitive science and new (and old) materialisms as they relate to Rhetoric and Communication. On the side, Nathan creates digital artifacts and serious games. You can find more information, as well as some of his work, at; the website is currently being redeveloped.

NeilSimpkins-300x300Neil Simpkins is a Ph.D. candidate in the Composition and Rhetoric program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He explores how disabled students experience college writing classrooms and how disability interacts with multimodal writing. He is also interested in technologies of surveillance and bureaucracy and how they affect rhetorics of identity. You can find more information about Neil at, and he also tweets at @neilfsimpkins.