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Dear friends and colleagues,

Happy Monday! We trust this newsletter finds you well and that your week is off to a wonderful start. Here are a few events happening in the next couple of weeks. We hope to see you in some of these event, if not all of them! 

This Week:

McWell Presentation
This Friday, November 8th at 11:00 AM, there will be a presentation specifically for English Department graduate students about the services and support offered by the McDonald Center for Student Well-Being, organized by our Quality of Life Chair, Emily McLemore. The event will take place in the conference room on the third floor of the St. Liam building, which also houses Student Health Services and the Counseling Center. Coffee and pastries will be served, and the event will last about an hour.

Please join us to learn about the many services "McWell" offers to support your well-being as a graduate student and tour their beautiful space, which includes relaxation rooms and a (free!) essential oils bar. First-year students are especially encouraged to attend this workshop, but the event is intended to benefit graduate students in all programs and at all levels. Members of the EGSA board can personally attest to the value of the services offered by the McDonald Center, and we sincerely hope you'll reserve the time in your schedule to learn more about how to care for yourself while in graduate school in order to do your very best work.

If you would prefer to walk over with a group, please meet Emily on Friday morning at 10:45 in the English Department Commons on the second floor of Decio. If you have any questions prior to the event or would like to request that any specific topics be addressed during the presentation, please feel free to get in touch with her at
GSU Representatives Update
As you all know, Joshua Wright and Oliver Ortega are serving as our representatives in the Graduate Students Union this year. They have been attending all their meetings and keeping us up-to-date with GSU business. You can access all their minutes from the GSU meeting in October through the following link: 
GSU Minutes
In addition, please note that the GSU's task force on mentoring and anti-bullying is looking to do focus groups with graduate students. Your input will help shape policy that will affect the culture of Notre Dame for decades to come! If you or anyone you know is passionate about mentoring please have them reach out to the head of the task force, Steven Corcelli (
We are pleased to announce that we are officially opening the CFP for EGSA’s 2020 Graduate Student Symposium, which will take place on February, Thursday 27th and Friday 28th of 2020

  • Keynote Address 
  • Creative Writing panel 
  • Propose your own panel!
  • Abstract Workshop (in preparation for the symposium)
The Symposium is a fantastic opportunity to receive feedback from peers and faculty in the English Department as you prepare your work for other conferences or journal submissions. It is also a wonderful chance to learn what those outside your main area of research are working on.
We are excited to announce that, this year, we are changing the dynamic of the Symposium to make it bigger and better! We will be having a wonderful keynote address by Chanté Mouton Kinyon. We will also have at least one panel focused solely on Creative Writing, so we hope to see multiple submissions from our MFAs in creative writing! 

In addition, our CFP will look a little different as this year we are allowing panel proposals. If there’s a topic you particularly want to see being discussed in this year’s Symposium, and you have identified students who share your same research interest across periods/areas of studies, we encourage you to organize and propose a themed panel along with your peers. This is a great opportunity for interdisciplinary collaborations! We will be selecting two student-created themed panels, one for each day of the Symposium. In your proposal, you must list at least 3 participants (including who will be chairing, if the chair is also presenting a paper) and the information regarding their respective papers (title and abstract for each one).

Lastly, in an effort to make the abstract submission process as stress-free as possible, this year our wonderful EGSA Board Officers have agreed to participate in abstract workshops where we will be offering help in brainstorming and drafting abstracts. We will have our first workshop in December (more information to be sent in a following newsletter). You can also reach out directly to the board through email. 

IMPORTANT: The CFP portals will be open until Sunday, January 26th at 11:59pm. We will not be accepting abstracts after this date, to allow for a better and smoother organization of our Symposium.

If you are submitting an individual presentation, please access the following portal: 
Individual Presentation Proposals
Individual Presentation Proposals. If you are submitting a themed panel, please access the following portal: Graduate Student Themed Panel Proposals. 
Graduate Student Panel Proposals
If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact our President, Laura Ortiz Mercado (lortizme@nd.ed), or reach out to any of our EGSA Board Officers.
Future Events:

MFA Professionalization Panel
We will be hosting a panel for MFAs about planning for the summer on Thursday, November 14th at 3.30pm in 235 Decio. We will discuss topics such as possible writing residencies, applying for grant funding, finding a balance between work and writing, performances, and more. While this event will be directed at MFAs, all are welcome.
Prospectus Panel
EGSA's prospectus panel will take place on Monday, November 18th from 10:30-11:30 a.m. in Decio 235. The panel is primarily geared toward those in the prospectus-writing stage of the program, though those in earlier stages are welcome to attend as well. If you are a first- or second-year student and plan to attend the panel, please RSVP directly to Professional Development Chair Emily Donahoe ( by November 11th so we can get an accurate headcount. 
University Health Services Q&A
EGSA will be holding a Q&A with Connie Morrow, assistant director of University Health Services, on Friday, December 6th from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm in Decio 235. Drop by to have your questions answered about changes to this year's university-provided health care plans.
Town Hall and Board Meeting
This year, EGSA officers have been meeting every first Friday of the month from 1:00pm to 2:00pm, at Decio 235. The purpose of these meetings is mostly to organize our semester events. However, we are using the first 15 minutes to serve as a town hall meeting, where every member of our department can come and talk to us, discuss any concerns they might have, and/or ask questions to the board.

Join us for our next meeting tomorrow, Friday, December 6th at 1:00pm. See you there! 
We want to hear from you!
Do you have any announcements or messages you would like to share with all of us? Send our President, Laura Ortiz Mercado (, a quick email so we can feature your announcement in our next newsletter.  
Also, don't forget to visit our website! Here you will find information about our goals and even a copy of our constitution, keep up-to-date with our events by following our Google Calendar, find incredibly useful links and resources shared by our different chairs, and more!
EGSA Website
Those are all our announcements for now. If you have any questions, concerns, or comments, feel free to reach out to us any time. Follow us on Facebook too, where we will be posting updates and pictures of our activities. 

We hope to see you in all our events! 

The English Graduate Student Association Board
President: Laura M. Ortiz Mercado
Vice-President: Trish Bredar
Vice-President: Shela Raman McCabe
Treasurer: Dominique Vargas
PhD Professionalization Chair: Emily Donahoe
MFA Professionalization Chair: Scarlett Wardrop
Quality of Life Chair: Emily McLemore
Social Chair: Jennifer Thorup
GSU Representatives: Joshua Wright & Oliver Ortega

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EGSA · 233 Decio Hall · Notre Dame, IN 46556-5644 · USA

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