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Transcript of Shelley McEuen
Fulfilling Requirement of
Professor of English
at the College of Southern Idaho
PhD student; Composition and Rhetoric; December 2011-present; Idaho State University
Master of Arts in Teaching; 1999; University of Idaho
Bachelor of Science; English Education; 1992; University of Idaho
Associate of Science; General Education; 1989; North Idaho College
2009-present; College of Southern Idaho; Associate Professor of English
2006-2009; College of Southern Idaho; Assistant Professor of English
2002-2006; College of Southern Idaho; Instructor of English
1999-2001; United States Peace Corps; Kenya, East Africa; responsibilities included teaching English as a second language to native Kenyans and assisting in the development of a rural community.
1996-1999; Coeur d'Alene School District; Coeur d'Alene High School; responsibilities included teaching journalism, Freshman English and publications.
1995-1996; Twin Falls School District; O'Leary Junior High; responsibilities included teaching eighth grade Language Arts.
1993-1995; Twin Falls School District; Twin Falls High School; responsibilities included Senior English, Sophomore Advanced Journalism, and Publications.
Presenter, ACLA (American Comparative Literature Association); Brown University; March, 2012
Presenter, Professor Chris Bragg’s Media Course, 2010-2011
Member, Outcomes Assessment Revision Committee, 2011-present
Chair, College of Southern Idaho Democrats, 2010-present
Member, Sustainability Council, 2010-present
Chair, Faculty Staff Development, 2009-present
Member, Film Festival Committee, 2010-2011
Developer/facilitator, Young Writers’ Conference, College of Southern Idaho, 2010
Member, Hiring Committee, Photography Professor Ben Lustig, College of Southern Idaho, 2009
Visiting Presenter, Dietrich High School, January, 2012
Visiting Presenter, Gooding High School, January, 2011
Reader, Mini-grant Essays, College of Southern Idaho, 2011
Writer, Refugee Cookbook, 2010-present
Volunteer, Art in the Hallways of Shields Committee, 2010-present
Volunteer, Perrine Elementary, 2009-present
Reader, Optimist Club Essays, 2009
Presenter, “Let’s Talk About It”, Idaho Commission for Libraries, 2007-present.
Writer, Personal Blog-"Life: The Proper Binge" http://www.bingingongratitude.wordpress.com 2009-present
Artist, Reliquary-an exhibit of three artists, Java on CSI Campus, May-September, 2011
Attendee, SPE (Society of Photographic Educators), Portland, Oregon, February 2011
Assistant, Mark Citret Photography Exhibit, Herrett Center, 2010
I currently meet the performance standards for the rank of Associate Professor in the following ways:
1. I set challenging individual and collective performance goals for myself.
Ongoing collaboration with my colleagues Dr. Clark Draney and Kimberly Madsen comprises one of the largest components of my performance goals. This collaboration, ongoing for the past ten years, is the definition of the sum equaling more than the parts. Each of us, in entering into the stream of scholarly engagement, brings personal interest and differing areas of “expertise.” I regularly read and research with an effort to find new material to share with my colleagues. It is a privilege and honor to work with them, and it pushes me to be a better teacher of English and a better student of the world. Our collaboration includes the integration of Co-Rev or Cooperative Review, which allows us, through software designed specifically for the purpose, to review each other’s student papers, offering feedback and evaluative comments in a more objective way. This collaboration requires more time and effort, but we find the effort yielding richer teaching and a more thorough representation of student performance. We continue to reflect and compare results year to year, actively engaging in reassessing our approach, content and strategy.
2. I exhibit commitment to education as a profession.
My professional work ethic is best exhibited in the responses and evaluations by students. Each semester I remind students they are the reason my job exists and what a privilege it is to work with them. I am fully aware, since I began teaching high school in 1993, that I have a profound responsibility to create the climate in my courses. I endeavor, with each new semester, to create an environment of engagement.
By making myself available to my students I am often Skyping or answering phone calls after hours or on weekends. I consider this one of my strengths and part of my ongoing commitment to my chosen field.
3. I respect diverse talents.
The most important critics instructors have are their own students. I believe student evaluations best illustrate this point. My background in teaching ESL, English 015 and 090 give me a solid foundation for meeting the needs of my composition students. I encourage my students to view writing as an individual process, and although we have performance goals outlines in our department Outcomes Assesment, students are expected and encouraged to fully realize and utilize their own strategies and talents. In other words, a variety of options, procedures and “means” can be employed in order to achieve a similar result—in this case, a proficient essay or portfolio.
Students in my courses are encouraged to engage in course discussions with open minds and respect for one another. An ideal I have cultivated since beginning in my profession, I find that creating a foundation of respect for where students are in terms of personal background, skills and opinions goes far to create an environment conducive to feeling safe and providing groundwork for deeper learning. An environment of “civil discourse” is something I am profoundly committed to and interested in exploring with my students. This takes conscious and deliberate modeling, questioning and unwavering commitment. My students feel recognized as individuals in my courses and feel challenged and acknowledged as witnessed by the following comments:
-The best part of this class was the opportunity to critique films I'd never have thought of watching otherwise. Broadened my mind a bit. The worst part was reading other students posts on Bb. Shelley must have the patience of a saint, I could barely make it past the first few postings and couldn't take the terrible language and grammar. Kudos!
-Very interesting class. The material covered many different genres. There was something for everyone in this class. It was great to get together with other students who were interested in learning and participating in class discussions. I often got the most out of class from our discussions together.
-I liked that the professor was so appreciative of student efforts. I also liked that we had to do responses after every film. Shelley always kept the responses open ended, yet as a student, I still felt challenged. She was interested in us as people, not just students. Not only were the class discussions great, but Shelley knew how to elicit further information.
4. I consider a variety of teaching strategies.
As an ongoing part of my personal and collaborative review, Dr. Clark Draney, Kimberly Madsen and I review each other’s 102 essays each semester while engaging in discussion throughout the semester about our teaching methods. This consistent, ongoing collaboration infuses my teaching with variety and motivation for which I am routinely awed and grateful. Our threesome has plans this semester to teach each other’s courses as an experiment to see how students engage with different teaching styles. I have incorporated the use of websites, blogs, and invited other campus professionals to present in my courses as part of an effort to reach and engage students.
I am currently using Skype with online students and have recorded short videos on You Tube for sharing. I plan to do more of this type of supplementation for my online as well as face to face courses.
5. I stimulate intellectual curiosity.
Because I regularly teach English 102, I have the ongoing opportunity to encourage and foster intellectual curiosity in my students. The “researched argument” essay in 102 embodies the idea of student-based inquiry and engagement. Students are guided, through a set of carefully crafted (and collaboratively designed) assignments, to delve into a subject that is immersed within their discipline of study or deep interest. They must begin with questions that haven’t yet been answered. As they begin to explore through the gathering and wading through of published information, their research begins to form a trail and curiosity often begins to spark. It is magical. Students are encouraged to think of themselves as scholars and, as the essay begins to take shape, they are writing from a place of informed, inquisitive contributor, rather than simply reporter or writer of English 102 paper. My collaborative efforts with Dr. Draney and Ms. Madsen enrich the course content. The result is an essay assignment (and corresponding set of tasks leading up to said essay) that attempts to fully immerse the student in inquiry and curiosity in their chosen subject. Please click on this link to view our current Course Main Page. The Course Main Page has headings at the top of the page, including schedule and syllabus. Links to tasks 9-17, which focus on inquiry and curiosity, can be found within the course schedule. http://producer.csi.edu/cdraney/2012/102/index.html
6. I encourage students to be analytical listeners.
As the shared 102 curriculum illustrates [http://producer.csi.edu/cdraney/2012/102/index.html] our entire course is designed around inquiry and analysis—to encourage students to think beyond themselves and create meaning. This process involves assigning more tasks/assignments than our colleagues in an effort to get students to build upon earlier thoughts/responses. Students are asked to question, to “step into the stream of scholarly material” as they begin to look deeper at their long-held attitudes and beliefs surrounding themselves, their choices, their very realities. Our curriculum is unique to our department, and we believe our students are guided into a deep and challenging opportunity—one from which they emerge with greater insight and curiosity than when they began. Truly, this collaborative effort, and the manner in which it challenges and energizes me, has made its way into all aspects of my teaching, well beyond English 102. I find myself utilizing concepts and strategies that have proven successful in engaging students in other composition and literature classes.
-This class has helped immensely in regards to increasing my critical thinking skills as well as test my writing skills. This class has helped me become a more effective writer, and has helped me understand the importance of thinking and researching your beliefs.
-The assignments have broadened my horizons, and introduced me to new perspectives. Her classes have encouraged me to think outside the box.
I fulfill the qualities of excellence for the rank of Professor in the following ways:
1. I am concerned with the many aspects of students as individuals, not just in their roles as learners.
Although my time and attention to my courses is the fundamental component of my presence on campus, I demonstrate a depth of interest and engagement outside of my teaching. As witnessed on my 2009 and 2010 IDPs, I developed and facilitated the first Young Writers’ Conference at CSI, inviting 6, 7 and 8th graders from all three local junior high schools to attend. Twenty students convened on campus for a full Saturday to experience several workshops taught by two CSI English professors. Topics included nature writing, and story telling. Students were supplied with their own special notebooks and a copy of Spilled Ink: A Guide To Writing. Sharing their writing was a highlight of the day as volunteers walked to the podium and addressed their peers, reading their work. Overwhelmingly, the student response was positive and instigating such a project was incredibly satisfying for all involved.
It was a great event...
-Ms. McEuen was great. If I was struggling or having a hard time or stuck in a mental block she was great about helping me see around it.
-She was great and I am excited to take her second course in the spring. I loved how on the ball she was on helping me out and making sure I learned well.
-Amazing! Very clear and concise. I always knew what I was doing and I was very
comfortable with new material and how it was introduced to me.
-By far one of the best classes I have ever taken. Great instructor. Would love to her in more classes.
I currently chair the CSI Democrats, an energetic group committed to being involved in local politics as well as state and national issues. This group is currently the only student-led politically affiliated group on campus. From baking donkey cookies for “Feel Good Friday” to organizing trips to political events, this group and my involvement with them has enriched my personal as well as professional life. This has been my first foray into chairing a student centered
organization, and I am enjoying it, immensely. We meet weekly.
Sitting on the committee that assisted in vetting and selecting the student artists currently hanging in the CSI Shields Building was a rewarding way to acknowledge the incredible talent that so often goes overlooked. Our committee met with the artists and Professor Mike Youngman to view works in progress and voted on those we felt would best represent diverse talent in our busy Shields hallways. I loved being a part of this organic process, and I hope to remain involved as the artwork is changed out, year to year.
I was recently invited to attend the American Comparative Literature Association Conference at Brown University in Rhode Island to present a paper on my PhD plan. I am thrilled to be engaging in a discourse that runs parallel to what I find most engaging, challenging and rewarding in my teaching. (2.b) http://acla.org/acla2012/
Letter of Intent
Idaho State University
As a teacher of writing, I have been engaged in teaching composition and rhetoric, in one form or another, since 1992, when I began my career at Twin Falls High School. Approaching the ten year mark at the College of Southern Idaho has brought about reflection and renewed zeal for personal scholarship. Teaching duties have been varied, including twenty semesters of freshman composition in addition to Film and Literature, Advanced Composition, Introduction to Literary Criticism, and a unique course titled Science, Literature and the Environment. My courses and ongoing collaboration with two colleagues have fueled my interest in the teaching of composition and inspired me to pursue an advanced degree. Both of my respected colleagues have made Idaho State University their institution of choice in seeking their personal degrees, which contributed to my own interest in your institution.
My Masters of Arts in the Teaching of English degree from the University of Idaho with its emphasis in psychology was an exploration of the manifestation of resiliency or the possibility of resiliency within the secondary English classroom. Working toward my Masters while teaching public school made me keenly aware of student engagement and response in writing, and I believe the years spent inside public schools served me well.
I see the PhD curriculum as the next step in deepening my scholarship and pedagogy related to the teaching of composition and rhetoric. My primary area of interest is how students in my writing courses engage (and challenge the obstacles to engagement) in meaningful civil discourse. The viral onset of Facebook has expanded Stephen Greenblatt’s term “self-fashioning” to an unprecedented degree. Updating one’s status and “tagging” photographs in online albums represent an example of semiotics—sign (photograph or “update”), object (referent) and interpretant (sense made of sign) serving as cultural processes. Expand this idea to incorporate online blogs, discussion forums and specialized websites found on the Internet, and one quickly begins to appreciate the breadth and capability of technology to serve as a platform for identity representation and connection. But moving beyond merely personal self-fashioning lies the ability for creating a “curatorial me,” suggested by Bill Ivey and Stephen Tepper. As savvy cyber consumers, the cultural “text” we create moves beyond simply being selective with our “self-fashioning” information, and expands to include our ability to cull preferred entertainment—music, films, literature, news, and in doing so, connect with communities of like-minded fans. In a composition and/or literature classroom, this idea of connectedness can serve as an important platform upon which to begin a civil discourse about assigned readings, the trending topics of the day, writing, and what it means to be a scholar. As philosophy professor Kwame Anthony Appiah states, these areas of connectedness provide a way of “sidling up to difference.” The way in which “self-fashioning” expands the possibility of connectedness and civil engagement within an English classroom environment and the far-reaching implications of students participating in a global rhetoric is an area I wish to pursue.
College of Southern Idaho
3. I believe civil discourse, exemplified in both discussions and in written form, is the basis of encouraging independent thought. I construct my assignments around the idea of moving students beyond their own silos of what is known and understood. As previously stated, in a time where media is less than encouraging when it comes to diversity and polarization is king for both ratings and the average sound bite, this idea is fundamental in forming the foundation for good discussion, good communication, and, thereby, good writing.
English 211 Introduction to Literary Criticism
Narrative, Part 1
2. I provide perspectives that include a respect for diverse views.
My respect and encouragement for diverse views is what fuels my teaching and, largely, my personal ethic. As my shared 102 curriculum models, I truly live my idea of being open and willing to share material as well as my views. I encourage the same with colleagues in my department. The student body at CSI that comprise my English 101 and 102 courses range from single parents returning to school to the just-graduated seniors from Filer, Gooding and Belize. I strive to make my classroom a wellspring of opportunity and growth for students by encouraging civil discourse, which I feel is something NOT modeled by our current media. As my Letter of Intent to the ISU PhD program indicates, I intend to study this concept deliberately. (2.a)
4. Evidence that students have learned from my courses is crucial. Through student evaluations, final projects and portfolio assignments, I glean an accurate and realistic appraisal of their performance and efficacy of my teaching. I take student evaluations seriously. Communicating clear expectations is paramount in my courses, and I include both departmental as well as course objectives on my syllabi.
Narrative, Part II
Letters of Recommendation
Letter of Intent:
Thursday, December 15, 2011
I am writing to declare my intention
to apply for rank of Professor in February, 2012.
I believe I meet the criteria, and I have identified my
advocate as Dr. Clark Draney.
Shelley L. McEuen
My meaningful and substantive involvement at CSI directly correlates to a sense of purpose in my employment. Chairing the Faculty Staff Development Committee has been instrumental in helping introduce me to facets outside of my immediate work environment. The committee is diverse, and therefore invaluable in creating a fuller view of collegial issues and ideologies. I feel my work on this committee, from helping to plan the annual CSI employee picnic to debating the efficacy of new leadership training, to be meaningful and enlightening on many levels. I appreciate the opportunity to meet regularly with colleagues from across campus.
This involvement, as I mentioned previously, connects me to the CSI Democrats, a youthful and energetic committee, who enjoy exploring politics on a local, statewide and national scale. We are currently planning a trip to the “Frank Church Event Series” in February.
My decision to volunteer time for the Outcomes Assessment Committee was based on my interest and commitment to our department. The English department already exhibits excellence in our Outcomes Assessment process, but currently, we are interested in exploring ways of reducing our reading load and accommodating the ever-changing landscape of dual credit courses. Serving on this five-person committee has enriched my understanding of departmental goals and procedures and provided an opportunity to weigh in and contribute in a way that has felt meaningful and collaborative.
Serving on the committee that initiated the CSI Foreign Film Festival was rewarding and a great deal of fun. I am thrilled to see the committee begin its second season in conjunction with Larry Roper, a local businessman and continue the work we began in 2010.
My work with the CSI Sustainability Committee has proven both challenging and rewarding as well. The idea of sustainability is fundamental to how I choose to live my life, and this committee is an extension of these ideals to which I strive. Collaborating with the Maintenance and Cabinetry Departments for separate but related projects associated with the garden’s upkeep, fertilization and signage have brought me into meaningful discourse with a multitude of people across campus and allowed me to communicate the importance and symbolic nature of having such a garden.
In addition to the mentioned campus committees, I volunteer my time off campus through my ongoing involvement with the Idaho Humanities “Let’s Talk About It” book series. This involves traveling to rural libraries where a common, themed book has been read and facilitating discussions based on the reading. My continued involvement with this program demonstrates my passion and abiding joy in sharing great literature with a variety of people. I absolutely love being a part of it. Next stop: Jerome, Idaho, where I will lead a discussion on the western Shane.
Please refer to my Vitae section to see a list of other ways in which I volunteer. I find myself at Perrine Elementary monthly to volunteer in my first grade daughter’s classroom, and I often read essays or grants associated with awards. My work with the Refugee Program in the creation of a cookbook has also been greatly rewarding and an opportunity to share my writing skills. The cookbook hopes for publication to take place in summer, 2012.
To conclude, as an Associate Professor I spoke of “hitting my stride.” As my tenure at CSI continues, I find myself experiencing a deeper and richer connection to my colleagues and subject matter. In short, I find myself making connections that simply take time and maturity. I spend more time on projects and with work I find the most meaningful, and I surround myself with colleagues and friends who connect me to that good work. My life and those in it continues to be one of inspiration and character building. I count myself indubitably blessed for having chosen a profession for which I continue to hold zeal and can delight in its ever-changing landscape.
Thank you to the rank
committee for taking the
time to volunteer and perform
the significant task of evaluating
faculty for rank consideration.
Your work and time are appreciated.
I recently went through the formal application process and was accepted to Idaho State University’s PhD program in Composition and Rhetoric, offered through the English Department. Currently taking my first class toward this degree requires a four-hour round trip commute. I am thoroughly engaged and inspired in my first class, and I believe there is something magical that occurs when you allow yourself to be in the position of a student again. I am committed to acquiring credits each semester and working steadily toward this personal dream. It has been with much enthusiasm and excitement that I have begun the program.
I have had the great fortune to co-teach English/Biology 210 with Dr. Jan Simpkin for the past three spring semesters. This truly unique course, completely team taught, combines biology with literature and engages students in the study of how both disciplines attempt to make sense of the natural world. This course attempts to meld the diverse approaches of scientific thought and the world of literature into a cohesive whole. Our students bring a variety of views with them. These views range from those of retirees to students in forestry, business, agriculture, biology, ecology, English, and education. Our field trips take us to Craters of the Moon, Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge and Yellowstone. The structure of the course and the addition of field trips encourage a meshing and sharing of divergent thoughts and ideologies. Having the opportunity to teach, share subject matter and experience the natural world with students invigorates and inspires me.
Student from English/Biology 210:
"This was an excellent class. The instructors were spectacular, the subject-matter was very intriguing, and I learned a lot. It was one of the most worthwhile classes I've ever been in."
Science, Literature and the Environment
The final project in my Film and Literature Course (3.a) Engl 126, is an example of students branching out and presenting found information based on their individual interests. In this final project, students are studying multiple works from both directors and authors while looking at how this study helps to inform both mediums of storytelling. They share this information with their peers in presentation form. The results have been highly unique and informative, providing a structure for tunnels of learning that only different perspectives can provide.
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