Past Interns

Cori Agnoni (FA20, ACH Clear Pathways and Duquesne Community Writing Center)

Cori Agnoni is a senior in the Secondary Education/English program and originates from Akron, Ohio. This semester she will work alongside ACH Clear Pathways and, in conjunction with another student, host a resume writing workshop for members of the Pittsburgh community. She is a member of Kappa Delta Epsilon (Duquesne’s professional education fraternity) and Lambda Sigma (a selective Honors fraternity). She also works for the Duquesne University SBDC, where she manages social media pages, the website, and helps with training events for local small businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs. The internship opportunity with ACH excites Cori and she looks forward to building relationships and networks through a mutual passion for writing. Advancing to the next phase in a career or field is something that can often be scary, but through resume writing and communication, there’s room for growth. After graduation, she plans to attend graduate school to earn a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership and Administration. 

Kihei Staruch-Paikai (FA20, ACH Clear Pathways and Duquesne Community Writing Center)

Kihei Staruch-Paikai is in her fourth year as an English major and Psychology minor. This semester, she will serve as a Community Writing Center Consultant for ACH Clear Pathways. Working with students in the community, she offers guidance on writing, worksheets, and creative projects. Kihei is also an Undergraduate Consultant for Duquesne’s Writing Center. While here, she assists writers from all disciplines at any stage of the writing process. She is head Poetry Editor for on-campus literary and arts journal, Lexicon. Her duties include reading through poetry submissions, organizing meetings with members of Lexicon, and approving submissions. This year, Kihei is also a Resident Assistant in Brottier Hall, helping students to feel safe, comfortable, and a sense of home in their residence halls. She hopes to inspire the young minds of ACH Clear Pathways and instill in them a love for creative writing and art. After graduation in December, she hopes to obtain a master’s degree in Social Work and eventually practice as a psychotherapist. 

Nicole Haase (FA20, DUQuark)

Nicole Haase is a senior forensic science and law student with a minor in mathematics and a pre-law certificate. She is a member of Phi Sigma Lambda, which is Duquesne’s forensic science and law professional fraternity. Through this internship, she hopes to improve her writing abilities and get a piece published in the D.U. Quark. Nicole will graduate with a bachelor’s in biology in spring 2021, and continue her education the following year to earn a master’s degree in forensic science. She is grateful for the opportunities that Duquesne offers, and the experience she will gain from this internship. Nicole is excited to start contributing to the blog and to gain valuable skills to take with her on any future endeavors.

Emily Kizina (FA20, Gumberg Library)

Emily Kizina is a senior English major with a minor in theater. She is from a small town outside of Penn State University called Philipsburg, PA. This fall Emily will be interning under the leadership of Ted Bergfelt at Gumberg Library, giving her a chance to gain insight on all that the library does for students that goes beyond the means of books. This includes fixing LibGuides and eventually creating her own guide at the end of the semester which students will be able to use as a resource. She’s looking forward to flourishing in a professional setting. Outside of school, you can find Emily singing in Duquesne’s only a cappella group, Mic Drop, or working in the curriculum center.

Michael Pernice (FA20, The Education Partnership)

Michael Pernice graduated from Pittsburgh Central Catholic in 2017. Now he is a full-time tri-major at Duquesne University, where he is undertaking the completion of degrees in Secondary Education, English Literature, and Computer Systems Technology. Michael has combined the skills and knowledge he has amounted with his entrepreneurial spirit to start his own business, Legendz of The Stoop LLC. This podcast was established in hopes of creating an open mic, inclusive safe space (The Stoop) for people to advocate, educate, and inspire society. Check out the episodes and services provided via www.legendzofthestoop.com

Shannon Jackson (FA20, Kelevra Ideas)

Shannon Jackson is a Senior Organizational Leadership Major and obtaining a certificate in Business Management. She has taken years of science and medicine-based courses at Duquesne and enjoys learning about the latest advancements in medicine. She would like to obtain a Science Communications Masters after her bachelor’s so that she can combine science with writing. She has a strong desire to convey medical jargon to the general public so that it is easily understood.  She recently landed an internship as a Medical Writer at Kelevra Ideas Marketing Agency. She is a member of Kappa Psi Fraternity at Duquesne University and has also played on the Duquesne Powder Puff Football team for a few years. This fall she will also be a part of The Duquesne Quark Science Magazine organization and is excited to be contributing to that. She enjoys getting outside and running or walking her two dogs, utilizing her hobbies playing the violin for church service, or taking a dance class.  

Nayelle Williams (SP20, ACH Clear Pathways)

Nayelle Williams is a senior English and Secondary English Education major. She is currently conducting her student teaching experience at McKeesport Area High School. As an undergrad, Nayelle is taking Master’s level courses in Educational Leadership and Administration. Her ultimate goal is to become a superintendent of a school district. While at Duquesne, Nayelle has been apart of the Black Student Union, NAACP, Phi Eta Sigma Honors Fraternity and Strong Women Strong Girls. She currently serves as the Nominating Chair for her sorority: Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. This semester, she is an intern with ACH Clear Pathways, which is an afterschool program that strives to “nurture the hearts of the arts”. Nayelle is ecstatic for this opportunity because she has a heart for young people and seeing them excel both in and out of the classroom. Nayelle believes in the mission of this organization and their dedication to mold holistic, well-rounded young people.

Sean Stewart (SP20, ACH Clear Pathways)

Sean Stewart is a senior in the School of Education. He is majoring in Secondary English Education and is currently completing his student teaching at Central Catholic High School. Outside of classes, Sean serves as president of Duquesne’s only a cappella group: Mic Drop. This semester, he is an intern with ACH Clear Pathways, an after-school arts program. In this position, he will help nurture young minds and foster creativity throughout a variety of different projects. Sean believes that appreciation and support for the arts within schools are essential for student success, and he cannot wait to see what this semester has in store.

Elsa Buehler (SP20, Gumberg Library)

Elsa Buehler is an English Literature major currently in the last semester of her undergraduate career. Following graduation, Elsa is excited to begin graduate school and continue towards her goal of becoming a school librarian. Elsa can’t wait to start her position as the Gumberg Library Intern, where she’ll be working to support the creation of research guides for the university under humanities librarian Theodore Bergfelt. Through her work this semester, she hopes to learn more about research, databases/web design systems, and the work of the information science professional. Elsa serves as the copy editor of :lexicon, Duquesne’s literary and arts journal and is a member of Duquesne’s chapter of Sigma Tau Delta. When she’s not focused on academics, Elsa works part-time at Anthropologie, watches the same seven films on repeat, and Facetimes her dogs, Alice, Sherman, and Peach. She looks forward to combining her experience as a student researcher with the behind-the-scenes work that Gumberg’s librarians do to support students of all disciplines!

Gina Mastrangelo (SP20, Duquesne Summer Creative Writing Camp for High Schoolers)

Gina Mastrangelo is a Senior English Writing and Multiplatform Journalism double-major planning to graduate this May. This semester she’s working as the social media and marketing intern for Duquesne’s annual Summer Creative Writing Camp program. She also currently works as a web maintenance employee at Duquesne, which entails posting on social media, handling website layouts, and producing videos. In addition, she serves as the secretary for Sigma Tau Delta, or Duquesne’s English Honors Society. In her spare time, she likes to read, spend time with friends, and listen to music. 

Mikayla Gilmer (SP20, English Department Social Media Intern)

Mikayla Gilmer is a Senior English and Secondary English Education major with a minor in Theater Arts. She is the social media intern for the English department as well as secretary for the Red Masquers. She is spending her student teaching hours at Pittsburgh’s Creative and Performing Arts 6-12 (CAPA). Mikayla has acted, directed, written, and assistant stage managed plays on Duquesne’s campus since freshman year and directs the North Hills Middle School’s winer musicals. After graduation Mikayla hopes to use her passion for theater and education. 

Morghan Hyatt (SP20, DUQuark)

Morghan Hyatt is a senior Biochemistry major with a double minor in Public Health and Mathematics at Duquesne University. She also is a Division I athlete in Track. Morghan’s aspirations include receiving her Masters in Public Health with a concentration in epidemiology. The research that she wishes to complete in the field of epidemiology would be for maternal and children’s health disparities. Morghan is also the Vice President of Ebony Women for Social Change and the Treasurer for Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. In the upcoming semester Morghan will be contributing her work to the DUQuark internship program to develop her skills as a scientific writer. The experience that this internship will provide will be a great opportunity for her to enjoy writing on topics surrounding public health. 

Emily DeGenova (SP20, DUQuark)

Emily DeGenova is a senior at Duquesne University studying Health Management Systems, with a minor in English. She dreams of attending graduate school at the University of Pittsburgh for a Masters of Health Administration (she would love to become a nursing home administrator). She is involved in Gamma Sigma Sigma, the Duquesne University Dance Theater, and the Crossroads Cristian Fellowship; and she works at the UPMC Health Plan and UPMC Canterbury Place. She decided to embark on an internship with DUQuark in an effort to challenge herself and expand her potential as a writer. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with friends and family. She always find herself dragging someone to a new coffee shop, on a walk downtown, a hike outside the city, or, simply, to her house to eat ice cream and watch a movie. She dreams of traveling the world with the people she loves and embracing God’s creation no matter where she is.

Megan Zimmerman (FA19, Triada US Literary Agency)

Megan Zimmerman is a second year Master’s student in the English Literature and Writing Program. She served her internship with Triada US Literary Agency under Uwe Stender, founder and owner of the agency. Megan received her Bachelor’s degree from Duquesne University in 2014, graduating with an English degree with a concentration in Creative Writing; a psychology minor; and a pre-medical certificate. She currently works full-time at Duquesne University as an assistant rowing coach. When she finishes her degree, she hopes to shift her career towards publishing.

Darren Studnicki (FA19, ACH Clear Pathways)

Darren Studnicki is a dual English/Secondary English Education student currently in his junior year at Duquesne. This semester, he is interning with ACH Clear Pathways, where he strives to be a positive mentor in strengthening the students’ writing skills. Upon graduation, Darren plans to teach English, preferably in a city school district. In his free time, Darren enjoys running, listening to music, and reading. 

Victoria Wilson (FA19, Gumberg Library)

Victoria Wilson is a senior English literature major with a minor in Advertising. She currently serves as the intern in the Gumberg Library. Also, Victoria is the editor-in-chief of Duquesne’s literary and arts journal, :lexicon. In her high school years, she was the Managing Editor of Canvas Literary Journal. In her free time she enjoys taking naps, reading and watching tennis.

Kiah Lynch (FA19, English Department Social Media Intern)

Kiah Lynch is a senior English and secondary English education major and in her first year of the accelerated English MA program. She is the social media intern for the English department as well as president of Sigma Tau Delta (honors English society). She is spending her student teaching hours at Pittsburgh’s Creative and Performing Arts public high school. When not reading, writing papers, or lesson planning, Kiah enjoys running, baking, and spending time with her dogs. 

Leah Seibel (FA19, Downtown Greensburg Project)

Leah Seibel is a senior English Writing major with a minor in Political Science. Leah was a writing intern at The Downtown Greensburg Project in the Summer of 2019. She enjoys writing mostly poetry and occasionally short prose pieces as well. Leah has been invested in the Poetry Workshop course since she began at Duquesne as it has helped her writing grow and mature. Leah is planning on continuing her love for writing poetry after graduation as well as pursuing a career in Juvenile law. In her free time she enjoys spending time with her family, exploring new music, watching anime, and baking with her mom. 

Meredith Bennett (FA19, DUQuark)

Meredith Bennett is the Editor-in-Chief of The D.U. Quark, Duquesne University’s student-run scientific journal where she works hard to increase the journal’s reach and provide quality scientific communication to the Duquesne community and beyond.  She is an undergraduate student studying Environmental Science.  In addition to scientific writing, Meredith is interested in ecology and evolutionary biology.  She is also involved in undergraduate research in Dr. Brady Porter’s biology lab.  In her spare time, Meredith enjoys camping, hiking, playing the piano, and learning new things about the natural world.

Michelle Valkanas (FA19, DUQuark)

Michelle Valkanas received her B.S. in Biology at Duquesne University in 2014. She then worked for RJ Lee Group (Monroeville, PA) for two years as an analytical chemistry technician before returning to Duquesne University to earn her Ph.D. in Biology. She is currently a 4th year Ph.D. Candidate in Dr. Nancy Trun’s lab and is studying bioremediation of abandoned coal mine drainage. Michelle looks at how microbial communities impact passive remediation systems built to treat abandoned coal mine drainage. Michelle is a Duquesne University Bayer Graduate Fellow and a National Center for Science Education Graduate Fellow. She has received two research grants from the Geological Society of America, including the Honorary Gould Research Grant, and received funding from the Scientific Research Society, Sigma Xi. Her primary interests are in promoting inclusion of Women in STEM and participation in informal science to increase STEM exposure in the community.

Emily DeGenova (FA19, DUQuark)

Emily DeGenova is a senior at Duquesne University studying Health Management Systems, with a minor in English. She dreams of attending graduate school at the University of Pittsburgh for a Masters of Health Administration (she would love to become a nursing home administrator). She is involved in Gamma Sigma Sigma, the Duquesne University Dance Theater, and the Crossroads Cristian Fellowship; and she works at the UPMC Health Plan and UPMC Canterbury Place. She decided to embark on an internship with DUQuark in an effort to challenge herself and expand her potential as a writer. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with friends and family. She always find herself dragging someone to a new coffee shop, on a walk downtown, a hike outside the city, or, simply, to her house to eat ice cream and watch a movie. She dreams of traveling the world with the people she loves and embracing God’s creation no matter where she is.

Riley Williams (FA19, DUQuark)

Riley Williams is currently a senior majoring in Biology and hopes to continue her education here at Duquesne by earning her master’s degree in environmental science. Before considering Pittsburgh her home, Riley lived with her parents, two sisters, and beloved cat, Sunny, in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. While living in Pittsburgh, Riley has regularly volunteered at The Humane Animal Rescue shelter and has worked as a lab aide in facilities at both Duquesne University and University of Pittsburgh. She also began assisting with biology research focusing on fish eDNA as a form of identification here at Duquesne in the spring of 2019 and hopes to continue this research until her graduation. Riley enjoys scientific writing and hopes to learn how to efficiently write scientific articles for a more public audience.

Elizabeth Kovacs (FA19, DUQuark)

Elizabeth Kovacs is an environmental science major completing her senior year at Duquesne. She has previously written for The Duquesne University Quark and is currently completing her science writing and communication internship with the Quark. While she is not working on classes and her internship, she applies her environmental knowledge through her research on houseplants, gardening, and working on urban farms throughout the city of Pittsburgh. In her free time, she enjoys experimenting with vegan cooking and baking by creating her own recipes and spending time with her rescue cats. She is looking forward to sharing her internship experiences and becoming a more effective science communicator this semester!

Suzie Costa (FA19, DUQuark)

Hey, my name is Suzie Costa and I am a sophomore biochemistry and pre-med major with a minor in math. I am from the Poconos and I love hiking, running, kids, traveling and trying new ice cream flavors. I am looking to go to medical school after I graduate either in NYC or California and I hope to specialize in either pediatrics or anesthesiology. I decided to take part in the DU Quark internship this year because I want to further develop my writing skills, both in a scientific and non-scientific way, as well as become more familiar with research-based writing and reviewing/editing. A few things I am very interested in researching and writing about are the presence or non-presence of of biomarkers that indicate Autism Spectrum Disorder and the mental stigma surrounding it.

Emma Shirey (FA19, DUQuark)

Emma Shirey is a current Junior at Duquesne University. She self-designed her major, English with a Nonfiction Writing track and is excited to dive into the world of nonfiction writing head-on. Emma is the president of The Gender Forum, a club at Duquesne which discusses the way gender and sexual identity affect daily lives. In her Sophomore year, Emma took a Scientific Writing class which propelled her interest in how science plays a role in every day issues. She is looking forward to working with The DU Quark and combining her newer interests in the scientific community and her passion for the humanities. In her free time, Emma enjoys teaching spin at Duquesne’s Power Center, making art, and learning new things in and out of the classroom.  

Maggie Retton (SP 19):

Maggie Retton is a second-year undergraduate student at Duquesne University. She is an English and Integrated Marketing Communication double-major. Maggie is the assistant layout editor at :Lexicon, a member of Sigma Tau Delta, a Reading Buddy for the Carnegie Library, and a volunteer for the St. Vincent de Paul Society. When she’s not reading or writing, Maggie likes to spend time with family and practice yoga. Maggie is thankful to be entrusted with tutoring Pittsburgh’s youth this semester as an ACH Clear Pathways Intern. She is thrilled to be applying her English studies to a cause like this!

Janeen Selfridge (SP 19):

Janeen Selfridge is a current junior at Duquesne University, graduating this December. She is a double major in English and Psychology. She is the editor in chief of L’Esprit du Duc, the secretary of the english honors society, a member of psychology honors society, and involved in Crossroads Christian Fellowship. She is looking forward to working with local children on their writing and other academic skills through the ACH Clear Pathways Internship this spring. In her free time, she enjoys writing of multiple genres, photography, music, and baking. She can’t wait to see what this spring semester will bring!

Chelsea Abdullah (SP 19):

Chelsea Abdullah is a second-year English MA student at Duquesne University. She is in the Literature and Writing track and, unsurprisingly, enjoys both literature and writing. She grew up in Kuwait, completed her undergraduate degree in Journalism at CU Boulder, and is now in her final semester at Duquesne. It is undecided whether or not this will be her final degree. Chelsea is excited to be bringing her love for literature and writing together as an Intern at Autumn House Press. Outside of school and her internship, Chelsea is a writer and editor for a visual novel company called DICESUKI. When she is not editing creative things, she is writing them. She is excited to dive headfirst into (even more) literature for her internship!

Gabrielle Kolencik (SP 19):

Gabby Kolencik is an English-Writing major at Duquesne University in her last semester of undergrad.  Hailing from Uniontown, PA, Gabby ventured into the big city in search of adventure, excitement, and, of course, a fabulous education that only Duquesne’s English department could provide.  Gabby is ecstatic to begin working as the Humanities Intern at Gumberg Library. While at school, Gabby has enjoyed being an undergraduate consultant at Duquesne’s Writing Center, the poetry editor for the school’s literary magazine, :lexicon, and a member of Sigma Tau Delta.  Her poetry has been published by :lexicon and Private Suite Magazine, and she has also received the Carroll Creative Writing Scholarship for her work.  In her free time, Gabby enjoys exploring the city of Pittsburgh, consuming large amount of caffeine, and watching Netflix.  After bidding a bittersweet farewell to her English studies, she will begin her next journey as a J.D. candidate at Duquesne University School of Law.  Gabby is so thankful for all the opportunities she has been given as an English student, and can’t wait to learn even more during her internship!

Catherine Evans (SP19):

Catherine Evans is a current student at Duquesne University in her final year of undergraduate studies. She is pursuing two majors in English and Corporate Communication and a minor in World Literatures. She grew up in Curwensville, Pennsylvania and has loved reading and writing for as long as she can remember. Catherine is excited to be the Marketing Intern for Duquesne University’s Summer Writing Camp for High School Students. Catherine also serves as President of Duquesne’s chapter of Sigma Tau Delta: English Honor Society and as the Public Relations Coordinator for L’Esprit du Duc. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, horror movies, and Thai food. She looks forward to sharing her internship experiences over the course of the next semester!

Christopher Anthony (FA18):

Chris Anthony is a current student at Duquesne University, finishing out his undergrad in Secondary Education and English. Originally from a suburb of Philadelphia, Chris decided to move to Pittsburgh to attend Duquesne only after his high school guidance counselor made him apply – but Chris does not regret a thing. During his time in Pittsburgh, Chris’ poetry has appeared in Duquesne’s literary magazine, :lexicon and has been catalogued at Duquesne’s Rome Campus. For the 2018 Fall Semester, Chris is exited to work with the Gumberg Library as its Humanities Librarian Intern. He looks forward to finding the overlap between librarianship, poetry, and English education, and hopes to share those experiences here, with you all, as he moves closer to one of his goals: becoming a librarian.

Kathleen Herbstritt (SP18):

Kathleen Herbstritt is currently a student at Duquesne University, pursuing a major in English Writing and a minor in Women and Gender Studies. She grew up in the Pittsburgh area, and is especially fond of the city’s various public libraries. After graduating, Kathleen is planning on pursuing a career in publishing as an editor. Her writing has appeared in various publications such as Duquesne’s Lexicon Literary Magazine and the Pittsburgh Post Gazette. Additionally she has run both personal and literary blogs online. She also enjoys theatre, music, films, and art. Kathleen is looking forward to sharing her experiences as the Humanities Intern at Gumberg Library and English student.

Elsa Buehler (SP18):

Elsa Buehler is a current student at Duquesne University, hailing from Youngstown, Ohio. She is a sophomore pursuing a degree in English Literature, with a minor in Communication Studies. Elsa always gets a kick out of the classics, or a good drama, but usually tends to revisit her old favorites: To Kill a MockingbirdThe Catcher in the RyePride and PrejudiceThe Little PrinceAnd Then There Were None, and The Perks of Being a Wallflower. Starting this January, Elsa is excited to begin as an English Department Intern for John Fried’s Summer Writing Camp. She writes on the Features Staff of The Duquesne Duke, and her articles can be found published online or in the weekly issues. Elsa also serves as the copyeditor of :lexicon, Duquesne’s literary journal. In addition to this, Elsa enjoys sad movies, happy music, and Pittsburgh’s rich culture. She looks forward to cataloging her experiences with the Duquesne English Department.

Samantha Campbell (FA17):

Samantha Campbell is a native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and a current student at Duquesne University.  She has been an English aficionado for as long as she can remember and credits her continued inspiration to two pioneering female authors: Louisa May Alcott and Margaret Fuller.  At Duquesne, her focus is on Literary Studies as well as Global Politics & Policy. For the past 8 months, Samantha has been an Educational Programs Intern at the Career Services Center of Duquesne University and is excited to continue her work with the department for her final semester of her undergraduate education. In addition to her internship, she has had works of creative writing published in :lexicon Literary Journal and 1932 Quarterly Literary Magazine, and she volunteers her time as an Associate Editor of poetry and prose for 1932 Quarterly and President of Sigma Tau Delta English Honor society.  In the near future, Samantha hopes to continue her education by pursuing a Master’s degree in professional writing.  She occasionally publishes personal essays on Medium.com and enjoys discussing politics, movies, music, sports, and much more. Samantha is looking forward to sharing her internship experience as an English major!