I am a PhD candidate in Rhetoric and Composition at the University of Louisville. My dissertation research looks at the rhetoric used by community colleges and four-year institutions to sponsor (recruit) students into vocational programs related to the oil and gas industry. I investigate how the oil and gas industry’s recruitment strategies (re)define terms such as “skills” and “literacy,” and how educational institutions create/revise/drop programs to accommodate these changes demanded by the oil and gas workforce. I use Deborah Brandt’s theory of literacy “sponsorship” as a lens to investigate how the oil and gas industry directly and indirectly “sponsors” certain types of skills and literacies, and the role that educational institutions play in this sponsorship.
In addition to my dissertation research, I am the writing center coordinator at Berea College, in Berea, KY.