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Departmental Faculty and Staff


Key: McB=McCormick Building · WC=Writing Center



​Gatsinzi Basaninyenzi

Office Phone: 256-372-5381

Location: McB1

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Cheryl Carpenter

Office Phone: 256-372-5141

Location: McB6

B.A., University of Mississippi

M.S., The University of Southern Mississippi  

  • Studied at Mississippi State University, Oglethorpe University, and The University of Alabama in Huntsville

  • "Road Scholar" for the Alabama Humanities Foundation

  • NEH Summer Institute Grant Recipient to study the Struggle for Civil Rights from 1865-1965 at the W.E.B. DuBois Center at Harvard University

  • Author of article on Zora Neale Hurston for the Encyclopedia of Alabama Online

  • Presented at the Alabama College English Teachers' Association (ACETA) in Tuskegee and the National Association for African American Studies (NAAAS) in Baton Rouge  

Instructor of composition and literature courses in the General Education program and Honors English I and II 

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​Ne'Keisha Dawson

Office Phone: 256-372-5395

Location: McB11


​Peter Green

Office Phone: 256-372-5397

Location: McB12

Ph.D., Creative Writing from Georgia State University

Assistant Professor of Composition, Literature, Creative Writing (fiction/poetry offered in alternating years)

Favorite Authors: Walker Percy, David Foster Wallace, Margaret Atwood, Rene Girard, Greil Marcus, Robert Christgau

Favorite Music: Van Morrison, King Crimson, Low (of Duluth, MN), Radiohead, Fleetwood Mac (all eras)
Est. Number of Records: 3,000+ CDs, 2,000+ vinyl
"Everything has either a price or a dignity. Whatever has a price can be replaced by something else as its equivalent; on the other hand, whatever is above all price, and therefore admits of no equivalent, has a dignity." --Immanuel Kant

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Alfreda Handy

Office Phone: 256-372-5070

Location: McB14

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Johnnie Hargrove

Office Phone: 256-372-5398

Location: McB12

B.S., English Education from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville

M.S., English Education from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Assistant Professor of Composition I, Composition II, World Literature I, World Literature II, and Advanced Composition


Department Assignments: Assessment Coordinator, Advisor for English Language Arts Concentration Majors


Department Committees:  Teaching and Learning (Chair), Student Outcomes Assessment, English (Chair)


College Committees:  Academic Support and Administrative Support Program Review


University:  QEP Design Team, QEP Implementation Team

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​Lee Harris

Office Phone: 256-372-5066

Location: McB14


​Judith Hayes

Office Phone: 256-372-5388

Location: McB10

M.A., English, University of Alabama in Huntsville

B.A., English, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet, Munich, Germany

Teaches:  Composition and World Literature

Committees Involvement:
World Literature I (Coordinator),
Composition Committee,
QEP Design/Writing Team


Tania Hering

Office Phone: 256-372-5380

Location: McB13

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Jody Jones

Office Phone: 256-372-8796

Location: McB11

A.A., Journalism – Ohio State University 

B.A., Telecommunications - Alabama A&M University

M.A., English/Composition and Rhetoric- University of Alabama in Huntsville

Composition Co-Chair

Classes taught/specialize in:  Developmental English, Freshman Composition I and II, General Speech

Books and Coffee Presentation April 24, 2013:  “Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community” by Robert Putnam Presented by English instructor Jody Jones, the book focuses on the decline of social interaction in America, examining ways old social interactions are being replaced by newer models of social discourse.

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​Simon Ndombele

Office Phone: 256-372-5389

Location: McB4


​Koji Nishida

Office Phone: 256-372-5399

Location: McB13

Born in Hiroshima, Japan

Ph.D., University of Tennessee at Knoxville

M.A., University of Nebraska at Lincoln

B.A., University of Nebraska at Omaha.

Interests:  Analyze the themes in Latin American literature that are not familiar to Japanese such as race issues, human rights of Native Americans, and the abuse of power by the Catholic Church 

Committee Involvement:

  • Assistant Professor of Spanish  
  • AAMU Spanish Club
  • Books and Coffee Series
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​Jarrod Patterson

Office Phone: 256-372-5396

Location: McB11

B.A., English (Minor: Communications), Oakwood University   

M.Ed., Secondary Education-English Emphasis, Alabama A&M University     

Ed.D., Educational Leadership-Higher Education Emphasis, University of Alabama at Birmingham

Classes Taught:
Developmental English
Composition I & II
World Literature I & II
Advanced Composition

Composition, world literature, academic advising, retention, leadership

Service Involvement:
Grievance Committee
Composition Committee
World Literature Committee
Sigma Tau Delta (Co-Advisor)
Textbook Committee
Academic Appeals Committee

Research Interests:
Academic advising, retention, first-generation students, academic success, motivation, intrusive advising

“Good leadership consists of showing average people how to do the work of superior people.” 

John D. Rockefeller

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​Robert Powell

Office Phone: 256-372-5382

Location: McB15

B.S., Newspaper Journalism, Florida A&M University-1997

M.S., English Education, Florida State University-2001

Ph.D., English, Florida State University-2006

Specialty includes: British and American Literature

Courses taught include:  Composition I and II, World Literature I and II, British Literature Survey I and II, Shakespeare, Medieval Period-British Literature, Renaissance, Restoration and Neoclassical Periods-British Literature, Romantic Period-British Literature, Victorian Period-British Literature, The Short Story-A survey introductory literature course focused on short stories, Human Literary Heritage-A survey introductory literature course with an African-American focus, Black Literature

Committee involvement:

  • Books and Coffee Committee
  • English Department Recruitment and Retention Committee
  • English Club Faculty Co-Advisor

I strive to facilitate instruction that challenges students to learn and improve their reading, writing and critical thinking skills in ways interesting to them. As an educator, my philosophy is one in which grades are used to reward and motivate students to be competitive with their counterparts at other schools. My goal is to teach and mentor them to be well-rounded, hard working and goal-oriented graduates ready to face their future of a steadily toughening job market, Corporate America and graduate school admissions. 

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​Jonaid Sharif

Professor and Chair

Office Phone: 256-372-8303

Location: McB

B.A., Philosophy, American University of Beirut

M.A., Comparative Literature, University of Iowa

Ph.D., English, University of Louisiana


Dissertation:  Sign, Text, Structure: The Poetics of Jurii Lotman

Areas of study include: Third-world literature(especially Africa), criticism, and cinema.

Published textbooks of the Farsi language and intermediate Dari and two books of poetry in Farsi and Pashto

Current interests include:  online teaching and language in Toni Morrison's literary works.


Sheri Stanley

Office Phone: 256-372-5068

Location: McB8


BA, English, AAMU
MA, English, UAH

Teaches English Composition and Managerial Communication


Charlotte Teague

Office Phone: 256-372-8007
Location: McB6


B.A., English, Alabama A&M

M.Ed., Secondary Education/EnglishAlabama A&M

M.A., The University of Alabama in Huntsville

English/Master's Certificate: Technical Communication

Thesis Proposal: Defiant to Domination: Women Asserting Feminist Choices within the Boundaries of Existence (Featured Authors: Woolf, Hawthorne, Morrison)

Specializations: Technical and Professional Writing and English Education

Research Interests: Feminism, African American Women Writers, Theories of Composition

Recent Presentations and Publications:
-Dissecting the Heart of Home:  Four African-American Women’s Perspectives
Toni Morrison, Lorraine Hansberry, bell hooks, and Anita Hill, 2014.
-Civil Rights as Frame: Teaching Social Justice through Storytelling in English Composition, 2013.
-From A to Z:  Zora's, Zadie's, and ZZ's Use of Sass in Framing Cultural Identity and Individuality, 2013.

Courses Taught:
Composition 101/102, World Literature 203/204, Advanced Composition, Writing for Graduates, Technical and Professional Writing, and Managerial Communication.

Past Professional Experience: Technical Writer, Project Consultant, Middle School Language Arts Teacher and High School English Teacher.


Loretta Townsend

Administrative Assistant

Office Phone: 256-372-5381

Location: McB1

​Thelma Townsend

Office Phone: 256-372-5384

Location: McB8


​Jessica Walker

Office Phone: 256-372-5387

Location: McB9


Dwaynia Wilkerson

Office Phone: 256-372-8006

Location: McB10

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Kiietti Walker-Parker

Writing Center Director and Technology Specialist

Office Phone: 256-372-5698

Location: WC

BSEE, North Carolina A&T State University

MSCS, North Carolina A&T State University, MSCS

MA-English, University of Alabama in Huntsville

Spalding University, MFA-Creative Writing (poetry and fiction)

  • Books and Coffee Series
  • Writers' Harvest
  • Composition Committees
  • QEP Design & Writing Team
  • Gwendolyn Brooks and Vinson Prose Contests

Teaching and work philosophy:

What I missed most as an undergraduate was that many instructors held little real work or practical experience, only in theory, imagination, or what they also learned in school.  So, whenever I asked questions as to how, when, or in what instances would a particular theory, skill, or knowledge be needed, they were not able to provide specific examples that would have allowed me to see, visualize, and take-in the real-world applications and implications of what I was learning. I learned real-world experience and skills on-the-job training in various internships that stretched across the United States.

As a writing center director, I aim everyday to bring real-world experience and application to students.  Why should students know and be able to communicate effectively and well on paper and electronically as well as in person?  The answer lies in not just because textbooks or academia say they should but because the real world demands it in the here as well as later. 

"Each written effort is a living, breathing testimony of YOU as a person and one with abilities or NOT.  Writing is serious, and writing well is mandatory NOT optional." - Klwp

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