Pat grew up on Long Island, New York and dreamed of living in a city. She went to college at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia and majored in biology and English and then worked as a paralegal in Washington, D.C. while she decided whether to go to law school or graduate school in English. She eventually went to the University of Chicago and received an English literature Ph.D. She learned to love Boston while teaching at Brandeis University and has returned to the city after some years teaching at the University at Albany, State University of New York and a fellowship at Amherst College’s Center for Humanistic Inquiry. She is the author of Race, Nationalism and the State in British and American Modernism (Cambridge University Press) and is at work on a second book.
Pat volunteered for many years with the Boston organization Teen Voices, a journalism and mentoring program for teen women that produced a magazine by teens for teens. The core of this work was helping the teens to write and edit essays for publication. She also assisted with college admissions planning, especially the admissions essay. Pat has seventeen years of experience teaching essay writing, literature and cultural theory to undergraduate and graduate students. She enjoys coaching students of all ages to plan and execute their reading and writing missions whether they are working on an argumentative essay, a book report, a research paper, or a senior thesis. She also loves helping students understand and develop their own ideas about difficult readings or to do independent research projects such as a long paper or an honors thesis or to catch up on classes after absences caused by life events. She has taught many students the skills of academic planning, speaking up for their ideas in class, and notetaking (at home and in class).
On the graduate level, Pat has helped numerous graduate students (including international students) in English and American literature prepare for qualifying exams, draft articles and seminar papers, and complete MA theses or PhD dissertations. She enjoys giving feedback on writing projects and suggestions for moving through the levels of a graduate program or simply to help people design their own rigorous studies on a particular literary topic.
Pat’s biology major is now a hobby and she reads and watches a lot of stuff about dinosaurs, reptiles, large predators, trees, marsupials and other living things. She has often gotten lost hiking and biking, and aspires to learn natural history sketching and watercolor. She shares her apartment with her awesome turtle, Frank.