The Catholic University of America

Who are we? 

The Writing Center is staffed by graduate instructors and undergraduate peer tutors. Our graduate instructors have received highly competitive fellowships and assistantship awards that fund their work in the Center. Our undergraduate peer tutors have been nominated by CUA professors and then selected after a rigorous review and interview process. All Writing Center staff undergo extensive and ongoing training.

Writing Center Instructors


Erik Gravel is a second year M.A. student in the English department with a focus on the British Renaissance, particularly Milton and Spenser. Originally from Rhode Island, Erik received his B.S. in Biology and B.A. in History from Providence College. He has taught college mathematics and anatomy & physiology courses, and has also worked as a professional science tutor. His interests include writing in the sciences (from lab reports to reviews of scientific literature, to research papers), historical, theological, and philosophical writing.

Engineering, Grammar, History, Humanities, Classics, Math, Philosophy, Sciences, Theology, APA Style

Benjamin Bradley is a M.A. student in the English department with a focus on medieval literature specifically Old English and Old Norse literature. Originally from Ledyard, CT, Benjamin received his B.A. in English Literature with minors in history and Catholic Studies from Sacred Heart University. He has done work in archival processing and digitization as well as curated an exhibit at the Litchfield Historical Society in Litchfield, CT.

History, Music

Emily Alianello is a PhD Candidate in English at the Catholic University of America, where she also received an MA in 2009. Her primary research area is early modern religious literature, particularly sermons and devotional lyric poetry. Emily's dissertation explores the literary form of early seventeenth century British sermons. Emily is an adjunct professor at Trinity Washington University, and works in the Writing Center at the United States Naval Academy. She has taught classes in rhetoric and composition, argumentative writing, and British literature.



Phillip Henderson is a first year M.A student in the English department with a focus on Renaissance Literature, especially the lyric poets of the Elizabethan era. Originally from Austin, Texas, Phillip received his B.A. in Literature and Philosophy from Ave Maria University in Ave Maria, Florida . He has previously been an Academic Center for Excellence tutor at Ave Maria University, a A.C.T. Math Prep tutor at the Immokalee Foundation in Immokalee, Florida, as well as a private tutor in Latin, Algebra, and Arithmetic for a number of years. His scholarly interests range from poetic meter to ethics to the history of ideas.


Thomas Johnson is a M.A. student in the English department with interests in Victorian literature, dystopian literature, film adaptation, and popular culture. Originally from Adelphi, MD, Thomas received his B.A. in English Literature from Loyola University Maryland, where he also completed minors in Writing and Film Studies. In Summer 2012, Thomas acted as an assistant to Dr. Brian Murray, a Writing professor at Loyola, by doing research for the professor's project on Dicken's intellectual circle in Victorian London.Thomas has professional experience as an intern for and interim secretary to the Executive editor of a Washington magazine, and his writing interests include creative non-fiction, book and film reviews, and short stories.

Creative Writing, Media Studies


Sophia Mason is a M.A. student in the English department with interests in Shakespeare and the intersection of philosophy, politics, and ethics with literature. Originally from Lovettsville, VA, Sophia received her B.A. in Liberal Arts from Thomas Aquinas College, with a major in Philosophy and minor in Theology and Math. A Development Assistant for a DC non-profit, she also has experience with professional writing, including fundraising letter, grant and proposal writing, and donor research. She is a freelance writer whose work has been published in the National Catholic Register and the St. Austin Review.

Creative Writing, Humanities, Classics, Math, Philosophy, Politics, Sciences, Theology, APA Style


Rachael Mueller is a M.A. student in the English department with interests in Medieval and Renaissance literature.She lives in Ellicott City, MD and graduated from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County with Bachelor's degrees in English and Political Science and a minor in Creative Writing. She has previously been published in Baltimore Style and Chesapeake Life magazines, as well as writing for an undergraduate political humor blog. Her writing interests include political, historical and creative works.

Creative Writing, and Politics



Michael Strickland is a first year M.A. student in the English department and has a focus on Old English and Old Norse. Originally from Front Royal, VA, Michael graduated from Christendom College with a triple major in English, Classics, and Philosophy. He has worked as a high school English teacher and as a cataloging assistant in multiple libraries. His interests include classical and scholastic philosophy, literary criticism, popular culture, and linguistics.

Philosophy, Theology, Humanities/Classics, APA Style



Emily Linz is a M.A. student in the English department with a focus on Twentieth Century literature, specifically Southern literature. Originally from Texas, she graduated from University of Dallas with a Bachelor’s degree in English Language and Literature and a concentration in Latin. She has written for the commentary section of University of Dallas’ school newspaper, The University News, transcribed memoirs, and worked as a Latin tutor. She is also interested in creative writing, particularly the short story.
Art History, Classics, Creative Writing, Music, Theology


Undergraduate Peer Tutors

Wesley Cocozello is a senior English major who’s home is wherever his books happen to be. He is perennially interested (among many other questions) in what makes good writing good and why we should even care; more specifically he has interests in historical, philosophical and creative writing. Most of his writing experience comes from academia, though he has professional experience with the Shakespeare Theatre Company and the National Endowment for the Humanities. He also happens to have experience helping others write, having been an assistant writing teacher for two summers at a New Jersey private school. Creatively, he has been published in small journals, is the editor of CRUX, has had a play of his staged, and is the writer-in-residence for the CenterStage Theatre Company.
Philosophy, Literature, History, Creative Writing
Audra Nakas is a junior Psychology and Politics major from Falls Church, VA. She has worked as a research assistant under two professors in the Psychology Department and has held internships at two Catholic non-profits dedicated to human rights and social justice. Her interests include the social sciences and humanities, especially theology and philosophy. Her writing experience includes research papers, persuasive writing, journalism, editorials, and letters to politicians. On campus, Audra is also a Cardinal Ambassador and is involved in Students for Life.


Psychology, Politics, Theology, Philosophy



Eva-Maria Ghelardi is a Senior History Major (and Philosophy Minor) from New York City. She has worked previously as a Research Assistant, Research Intern, Media Lab Assistant, and JUMPSTART Corps Member. Eva-Maria enjoys reading argumentative papers and long books (The Brothers Karamazov, A Tale of Two Cities, and Les Miserables, among them), as well as examining nature and gardening. She is an active member of the Community Garden Group and the Green Club.

Art History, English, Philosophy, Theology, Humanities



Tyler Lomnitzer is a junior English major with particular interests in philosophy and Latin. He thoroughly enjoys close reading exercises and writing about Catholic literature, Catholic authors, and Catholic saints. Writing and the writing process are his favorite part of academia. Around campus, you will see Tyler in a few different capacities: as an RA for Flather Hall, an Operations Assistant for athletic events at the DuFour Center, and an active member in the Knights of Columbus council. Hailing from CT, he enjoys spending his free time out on the Long Island Sound, golfing, and listening to Jack Johnson.

Humanities, History, Theology, Philosophy, Lab Reports


Alex Sniatkowski is a third year English major. He likes to write and spends much of his spare time working on his own fiction.  When not representing Catholic University on the rugby field, he reads(mostly modernist and postmodernist authors) and watches movies and It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia. He has written about history and philosophy.

Creative Writing, Philosophy, Literature, History


Mary Catherine Amerine is a senior English major (and Philosophy and Anthropology minor) from the rolling hills of Virginia. She serves as the President of English Society and the Quill Editor for the Tower, and volunteers with Reading Partners as a reading tutor for elementary school students in Brookland. Mary Catherine loves reading everything from Dickens to Woolf, and enjoys discussing literature. When she’s not reading, she’s writing, particularly short fiction. She also loves theatre, particularly Shakespeare, and has a particular fondness for Audrey Hepburn movies.


History, Philosophy, Literature, Creative Writing, Anthropology.



Tricia Mars is a senior history major from Pennsylvania. She has worked for libraries, museums, and the US House of Representatives. She loves to read anything and everything, but has always has a special place in her heart for Stellaluna. She is interested in working on research papers and long theses, but is happy to work on any projects with students in the Writing Center. Tricia also loves to help with bibliography and citation styles, including MLA, Chicago/Turabian, and APA.    

History, Politics, Research, Thesis       

Looking for an instructor with a strong interest in writing in a particular subject or genre?
All of our instructors can assist you with any writing project or work with you on issues of grammar and citation, but if you’d like to request an instructor who has experience in a particular subject area or genre, please use the following list as a guide. If you cannot find your subject/genre on the list, but would still prefer a referral, please contact Dr. Kevin Rulo for assistance.

Architecture: Erik, Rachael
APA Style: Erik, Thomas, Sophia
Art: Thomas, Rachael, Eva-Maria
Creative Writing: Sophia, Rachael, Thomas, Wesley
Drama/Theater: Erik, Ben, Rachael
Education: Ben, Erik, Sophia
Engineering: Erik, Sophia
ESL: Rachael, Erik 
Grammar: Erik, Rachael, Sophia, Thomas
History: Eva-Maria, Bethany, Erik, Heather, Serena, Wesley, Alex, Tricia
Humanities/Classics: Erik, Sophia, Ben, Michael, Eva-Maria, Tyler
Math: Erik, Sophia
Media Studies: Thomas
Music: Thomas, Sophia
Philosophy: Erik, Sophia, Michael, Audra, Wesley, Eva-Maria, Sullivan, Tyler, Alex
Politics: Rachael, Audra, Sullivan
Psychology: Audra
Sciences: Erik, Sophia, Tyler
Theology: Erik, Sophia, Ben, Michael, Audra, Eva-Maria, Tyler

 Peer Tutor Alumni

Sullivan Maciag, '13


Grammar Specialists

Sophia Mason

Rachael Mueller

Erik Gravel


Administrative Staff


Dr. Taryn Okuma, Director of Undergraduate Tutor Program

Dr. Kevin Rulo, Director


Erik Gravel, Assistant Director
Sophia Mason, Outreach Coordinator



Location and Hours


The Writing Center's main location is now in the Pryzbyla Center, room 213. Come and check out the new digs!




Wednesdays, 5-8pm