Current English MA Students

Jorge E. Ambacher

Graduate Assistant [ENGL]

Jorge E. Ambacher is a native of the El Paso-Juarez Borderland. He is an MA student in English specializing in literature. He graduated summa cum laude from McMurry University in May of 2020 with a BA in English and Writing and a minor in Film Studies. He spent the last three years teaching high school English and Creative Writing in El Paso, Texas, and now looks forward to teaching at ISU as a graduate teaching assistant in the English Department. Jorge is an avid reader and writer. His interests are American transcendentalism literature and ethnic literature, including Chicanx Literature and African American Literature. During his free time, Jorge loves to write poetry and short stories while listening to classic jazz.

Samuel Papa Arthur

Graduate Assistant [ENGL]

Samuel Papa Arthur is an M.A English student with specialization in Literature at Iowa State University. Prior to I.S.U Samuel Arthur was a Teaching and Research Assistant at the University of Cape Coast's Department of English where he assisted in conducting research in postcolonial literature, postcolonial trauma as well as masculinities.

A budding poet, he has published in journals such as Kalahari Review and Shot Glass. Samuel aspires to be literary critic who will conduct research into postcolonial literature as well as the possibilities for envisioning alternative futures in African writing.

Carina Collet

Graduate Assistant [ENGL]

Carina is an MA student in English specializing in literature, and a graduate teaching assistant in the English Department. She graduated summa cum laude from Wartburg College in December of 2021, where she received a BA in English with a minor in Environmental Studies. Her research interests include dystopian literature, environmental literature, and the intersections between the two.

Talon Delaney

Graduate Student [ENGL]

Talon Delaney received his bachelor's degree in English with a minor in journalism from ISU in 2020. He wrote for the Iowa State Daily's politics and diversity desks during his undergrad, and was also published in Sketch Literary Journal. Since graduating, he worked as a substitute teacher and educational assistant in the Ames Community School District. His interests lay in post-colonial literature and the ways all literature either challenges or endorses power.

Ellis Deputy

Graduate Assistant [ENGL]

Ellis Deputy is an MA student specializing in literature with a WAGS minor. He is also an English department graduate teaching assistant. He graduated cum laude from Trinity University in May of 2023 and received a BA in English. During his time at Trinity, he was involved in choir and opera on the side and spent time also studying Biology and Computer Science. His research interests include queer narratives and identity in Early Modern English texts, the history of the book, John Donne, and anything wildly interdisciplinary.

Faith Ennis

Graduate Assistant [ENGL]

Faith Ennis received her B.A. in English with a minor in History from Iowa State University in 2021. She now returns to ISU as a MA student in English, specializing in Literature, and is a part of the Graduate Teaching Assistantship Program. She was born and raised in Iowa, but loves to travel and has spent months in Southeast Asia studying language and culture. Her particular interests of study include, but are never limited to, post-colonial literature and the history of rhetoric.

Jessica Goforth

Graduate Assistant [ENGL]

Jessica Goforth is an MA candidate studying English with an emphasis on teaching literature. She received her B.S. in Secondary English Education at Southeast Missouri State University in 2019. During her time at SEMO she was an assistant teacher at the university's preschool. After completing her undergraduate education she taught middle school English in a rural school district. Her interests include pedagogy, contemporary southern literature, and ecocriticism.

Seyyed Ali Mousavi

Graduate Assistant [ENGL]

Ali is an M.A. student in English and a graduate teaching assistant in the English Department. He is the recipient of the Freda Huncke Endowment Graduate Teaching Fellowship as well.

He received his B.A. in English Language and Literature from the University of Zanjan in 2020. Ali was also an English teacher in Iran. By the time he started his graduate program at Iowa State, he had already taught English and advanced speaking and writing courses to candidates preparing for exams such as IELTS and TOEFL for eight years.

Some of his research interests include Ecocriticism, 19th and 20th Century American Literature, Comparative Literature, Genre Studies, and studies in individual authors, particularly Emily Dickinson, William Wordsworth, and Ernest Hemingway. He has also recently taken an interest in Film and Game Studies.

Jacob Oliver

Graduate Assistant [ENGL]

Jacob Oliver is a small town Iowa native and a written word enthusiast. He received his undergraduate degree in political science from the University of Colorado, Boulder. While in Iowa, he worked for his local newspaper as both a reporter and editor, reporting on agricultural politics and high school sports at the state and county level. He has published articles for the Washington Post and the U.S. Army website. After joining the Army in 2021, he has served as military journalist and videographer. Besides journalism, he has a passion for early 20th century American plays and Russian literature. He enjoys teaching most of all, and believes everyone has something important to say.

Katie Painter

Graduate Assistant [ENGL]

Katie Painter is a Graduate Teaching Assistant and MA student in literature at Iowa State University. She is also a 2023 recipient of the Freda Huncke Endowment Teaching Fellowship. Katie's current research interests include 19th-century American literature, as well as exploring the impacts of religion and gender roles upon texts of this period.

Prior to her time at ISU, she received a BA in English literature with a minor in French at Kansas State University (2023), graduating Magna Cum Laude.

In her free time, Katie enjoys traveling as much as possible, painting or taking up other assorted arts and crafts projects, and aspiring to become a sommelier.

Elizabeth Short

Graduate Student [ENGL]

I graduated from Humboldt High School in 2006. After graduating, I attended University of Northern Iowa to achieve Bachelors in English Teaching in 2010. I was lucky enough to student teach in Pocahontas High School and Robert Blue Eagle Grove Middle School. There I met outstanding educators and excitedly waited for my first teaching job at Pomeroy/Palmer/Pocahontas Middle School. There I taught 7th/8th grade Language Arts for a year. Luckily, I saw an opening at my alma-mater Humboldt High School. I was hired for at-risk tutoring and upper level ELA electives. I have been there now for 12 years teaching and creating different curriculum (electives and core courses) for different levels of learners. After teaching advanced LA9, advanced LA10, LA10, LA10 Job Shadow, Novels, Composition, Mythology, and LA12, I have settled into teaching LA11 American Literature, LA11 British Literature, and the AP Literature and Language courses. I look forward to my experience here at ISU and continuing as a life long learner.

Aubrey Simons

Graduate Student [ENGL]

Aubrey Simons is a California transplant to Iowa, and has indeed experienced winter here! She studied at Santiago Canyon College and Cal State University Fullerton, earning a BA degree in English and graduating Summa Cum Laude.

She pursued secondary education as a career path (yes, she had her wits about her at the time), and has spent the past 6 years educating middle and high schoolers in the art of literature. She wanted to further her study of literature to support her career goals, and also because she's a nerd and she loves it. Her research interests include the independence cycle in children's literature, gender roles in British lit, and feminist/Marxist theory.

In her spare time, Aubrey hangs out with her husband Rob and their two dogs, Sansa and Colter. She also enjoys rock climbing, painting, and reading and writing poetry.

For a glimpse at her teacher life, go to

Sam Wilson

Graduate Assistant [ENGL]

Samantha Wilson is a first-year MA student in English with a specialization in literature. She received her undergraduate at Grand View University in Des Moines where she studied English with a focus on writing and minored in Studio Art. Her poetry has been published in Beyond Words Literary Magazine, Poets Choice, Wingless Dreamer, and Lyrical Iowa. Samantha is also an active member of Iowa Poetry Association as well as the local Ames poetry group, Third Stanza. She aspires to pursue her PhD with the goal of becoming an English professor.