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The Printing Press is the English Department Newsletter. Its purpose is to inform majors and minors about programs and activities within the department. The Press will inform readers of activities and opportunities outside of Monmouth College. For any questions or submissions, contact,, or


A Farewell to Senior English Majors

Every year, The Printing Press honors the passing senior English majors by bombarding them with survey questions while they are attempting to finish their senior thesis papers.  It's a bit of tradition that helps to keep them on their toes.  Here are selections from the responses we received.

Brandon Athey

What made you want to become an English major?
Not only my lifelong love for literature, but the fact that English majors get lots of women.

What is your fondest memory of Monmouth College?
There are many, but I enjoyed the time that someone decided to take Mark's and Rob's pictures and put them on the Brokeback Mountain photo.

What English class do you feel taught you the most?
Advanced Composition, because it allowed me to relax and enjoy reading and writing once again.


Danny Beck

What has been the most challenging aspect of the English major?
Finding time for all of the reading and writing.  Resisting the urge to become a P.E. Major.

What will you miss most about Monmouth College?
English classes, playing football and forming friendships, and being around friends twenty four hours a day.

What is your most favourite piece of literature that you've studied in any English course?
The Great Gatsby.


Al Burg

What made you want to become an English major?
Taking Composition and Literature with Mark Willhardt.

What author or piece of literature that you studied in any English class do you despise the most?

What English class do you feel taught you the most?
Advanced Composition.


Jaime Calder

Has not completed survey.

Shayna Chapman

What won't you miss about Monmouth College?
The administration and loud, drunken football players.

What made you want to become an English major?
I was interested in English in high school.

What are your plans after college?


Todd Franks

What English class do you feel taught you the most?
British Survey Two.

What are your plans for after college?
Student teach and be a teacher so I can read essays instead of writing them.

What final words would you like to say to any English major(s) on campus?
Participate in class and do the readings because you will learn more and you are a nerd at heart anyway.


Kaitlin Horst

Has not completed survey.

Jaime Jasmer

What is your fondest memory of Monmouth College?
Spending countless hours with amazing friends and the dinners or classes at the homes of professors.

What is your most favourite piece of literature that you studied in any English class?
Porphyria's Lover.

What are your plans for after college?
Working in cancer research as an oncology research coordinator and getting into a nursing program.


Rick Jones

Has not completed survey.

Karen Krautwurst

What will you miss most about Monmouth College?
I'll miss the awesome people.  The English department faculty is the most awesome faculty on any campus, ever.  My fellow English majors are simultaneously the smartest and most fun people in the world... for the geeks we are.

What won't you miss about Monmouth College?
I will not be missing the marvelous odor.  Ah, the intoxicating mix of dog food, sulfur, and pork.

What has been the most challenging aspect of the English major?
The whole major is a challenge.  Dealing with crazy professors is the most fun challenge.  Writing thirty page papers is the part that makes you know you should have been a P.E. major.

Jodi Luif

What made you want to become an English major?
Mark Willhardt actually gave me no other choice.  I entered my freshman year as a CATA major and when Mark asked me what my major was, he laughed and told me to be an English major.  Next thing I know, the registrar emailed me telling me I needed to confirm changing majors.

What English Class do you feel taught you the most?
Advanced Composition.  I learned so much about different writing styles and how or why they are effective and that it is possible to write as well as the authors did.  It just takes time and practice.

What final words would you like to say to any English major(s) on campus?
Find an advisor that you click with.  He or she can be your saving grace during the tough parts.


Andrea Madden

Has not completed survey.

Josie Melton

What made you want to become an English major?
I loved grammar and writing.  The English department here really opened up my vocabulary and ability to present my ideas in a concise argument.

What are your plans for after college?
I plan to find a career in either a journalistic or psychology related job and eventually attend graduate school when I figure out where I'm going in life.

What final words would you like to say to any English Major(s) on campus?
Don't let the essay at the end scare you away.  It'll put you through a month and a half in a personal hell, but it's worth it in the end.

Morgan Mikita

What made you want to become an English major?
I loved English in high school and thought that it wouldn't be much harder.  Man, was I wrong!  The students in the department are amazing, however.

What author or piece of literature that you studied in any English class do you despise the most?
Shakespeare.  There is no use for him.

What are your plans for after college?
Moving back in with my parents in Ohio.  Hopefully finding a job that has some remote connection with my degree.


Talitha Nelson

Has not completed survey.

Kelly Winfrey

Has not completed survey



 Recommended Summer Reading

by Johnathan Skidmore

Summer is steadily approaching and with that comes every English geek's favorite activity: reading.  Playing sports, lounging by the pool, and working to earn the right to live may seem like the priorities, but when the temperatures rise and the cool grass calls, reading is where it is at.  The following list of summer reading is recommended for every English major who has had to explain that strange book shaped negative image on their otherwise tanned stomach.

Y: The Last Man Vol. 1: Unmanned Y: The Last Man by Brian K. Vaughan

Graphic novel written by up and coming author.  Excellent art with a storyline that is guaranteed to keep you interested and character depth that will amaze you.  The book visits the common question of what would happen if all the men on earth died except one.  Don't let the fact that this is a comic book turn you down to this item.  You will not be able to put this ongoing series down until you have completed it.

Watchmen Watchmen by Alan Moore

This graphic novel, written by the same author as the graphic novel, V for Vendetta that was popularized by the movie of the same title.  Arguably the best written storyline and dialogue of all time in a graphic novel. 

The Complete Short Stories of Ambrose Bierce The Complete Short Stories of Ambrose Bierce by Ambrose Bierce

The authoritative collection of legendary satirist Ambrose Bierce's best short fiction.  This author's work is often overlooked, but on closer inspection is found to be brilliant.  Be the first kid on your block to own this tome.

The Best of Roald Dahl (Vintage) The Best of Roald Dahl by Roald Dahl

Bawdy and outrageously hilarious, this book collects some of Roald Dahl's more adult fiction.  The risqué or dark nature of the majority of the short stories in this anthology make for an interesting read that is a far cry from The BFG. Recite quotations from this and make your mother blush.

The Kite Runner Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

The first novel written by this talented up and coming author marks his explosion onto the popular literature scene.  The novel explores the political turmoil of contemporary Afghanistan in an educational, yet riveting narrative.

The Secret Life of Bees The Secret Lives of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd

Also the debut novel by a promising author, this book proves to be an emotionally stirring and well written narrative.  Outlining the life of a young girl and her struggle to overcome her father's neglect while also attempting to find her mother.

On Bullshit On Bullshit by Harry G. Frankfurt

The title says it all.  This is a book that everyone should read, English majors especially.

Story of the Eye Story of the Eye by Georges Bataille

A thoroughly creepy novel about an eye removed from a corpse.  This novel is governed by a rather interesting, if not perverse, flow of thought.  A good read, but not one I'd recommend to read in public.

Journey to the End of the Night Journey to the End of the Night by Louis-Ferdinand Celine

What better way to spend the bright cheerful days of your summer than by reading one of the darkest and depressing novels I've read recently.  Written in the early 1930s, this novel depicts the horrors of WWI, colonization, as well as many other topics.

The Time Traveler's Wife (Harvest Book) The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

Drawing very heavily upon incredibly dense character construction and development, this science fiction novel would be an excellent companion to work or the beach.  The novel is a touching love story about a man suffering from the ill-effects of time travel, unable to control his movement through time and the woman he seeks.





  • The English Department Party will be May 5th from 4-6pm, located at Professor Willhardt's home.  All English majors and minors are invited and encouraged to show up.
  • The Association of Young Journalists and Writers is sponsoring a $2000 Literary Essay Contest. Students can submit any essays that they have written to to participate in the contest.  The entry deadline is June 30, 2006.  You can visit the AYJW website for more information regarding this contest by following this link: Association of Young Journalists and Writers
  • The tutoring hours at the Mellinger Learning Center have changed. There are updated schedules posted around campus and there is also an updated version available on this website.  Please note that certain hours have changed and a new Japanese tutoring session has also been added.  To find this information quickly, please click here.


After reviewing the entries to this year's contest, The Printing Press has chosen Lindsey Markel as the winner of the creative writing contest.  The prize for this contest will be a framed and autographed black and white photograph of any English professor Lindsey Markel so chooses.  The following is a selection of the work she submitted for the context.  Enjoy!


While we slept, boneless and clasped,
I dreamt of you.  We were the same,
not more alive nor more absent;
I was pressing the back of your neck,
the places you absently touch but never see.
I pushed at your hairline and it folded,
like soil, making way for a seed
which I planted with my pursed wet mouth, again
and again, your skin spreading, giving way,
hungry for the shoot, for birth,
for my insistent crawling fingers to uproot what
you have buried, locks rusted shut,
everything cold underground, sealed and secret.


The Salvation Army woman, bundled up in a gray fleece coat, smiles half-heartedly at me as I approach her.  The night is cold, and as I am grasping for change in my bag, part of me is thinking about how frozen her hands must be on that bell, ringing and ringing like something from another century: a street urchin, a newsboy.  "Hello, how are you?" she says to me politely as I join her underneath the glow of a neon grocery sign.  "I'm fine," I say to the side of her face, "How are you?"  But she is yelling something to another customer who has just passed us; they seem to be acquaintances and there is some sort of casual joke they are returning to.  "Merry Christmas," she says to me without turning, still looking at the parking lot.  As I walk through the automatic doors, the familiar mechanical sound--the smooth track and stop, the air rushing in--is comforting.  It reoccurs to me that I graduated from college today, and I suddenly want to make an about face and run back outside, feel the winter air sting my cheeks pink and tell the Salvation Army lady.  "I graduated from college today," I say in my head.  In my imagination, she stops ringing the bell, taken aback and charmed.  She looks me directly in the eyes and says to me stoutly, with a nod of her head, "Well then, it's a good day." 

I've been worrying lately that everyone is an idealization in my head.  In my head, the boy who lives in the apartment two floors above me is secretly in love with me.  I have only seen him once, when I happened to glance up at his lighted window from the parking lot below; he was standing in a doorway, one hand on his face, seemingly looking in my general direction.  In my head, he peeks out that same window now, whenever I go out to my car.  He holds his breath when I look in danger of slipping on the ice, like glass in the moonlight.  He wishes he could hold my hand.  He thinks the pigtails I have fashioned tonight are spectacular and adorable, sort of punk rock, the way they don't quite work.  When he saw the new Alumni sticker on the back of my car today, he noticed, and smiled.   

Now, the tall, older man who tilts his head at me when he smiles and says "Excuse me," moving his cart to clear my path to the tortillas, has quite obviously been equally charmed by the pigtails.  I really shouldn't shake this town up like this.  I have moved on to the tortilla aisle only after having patrolled the produce section for at least ten minutes, looking for zucchini.  Having located the tortillas, shredded cheese, red bell peppers, broccoli, and the right kind of vanilla soy milk, I venture bravely back to the produce, hoping that the deli workers have forgotten my face by now.  I return with a plan of action: I walk along every single aisle, from west to east, to make sure I don't miss a single vegetable.  Only after I find the avocadoes and realize that they are avocadoes--even though I have pictured them as zucchini in my head--does it occur to me that I'm not quite sure I know what zucchini is.  I know exactly who I would call and ask.  I imagine the conversation in my head: "What do you use to make guacamole?" I ask.  He's equal parts glad to hear my voice and confused by my non-sequitur.  "Avocadoes," he replies.  I know he knows this, because he made me guacamole once, out of scratch.  I sat at his kitchen table and opened my eyes cartoonishly wide every time he turned his back, like we were being filmed, like I needed to prove how charmed I was by his two hands slicing avocadoes and carefully pouring lemon juice, the smell of it filling the room.  "Why?" he asks, and I say, deadpan, "Because I just realized that I have no fucking idea what zucchini is."  The conversation may also involve me asking if zucchini is "a green leafy," and then him asking me if I want to come over and watch a movie with him, and of course I do. 

As it is, I'm giving up on the zucchini, green leafy or not, but there is something about being here late at night that I like.  I'm the only one in the produce section besides bored-looking employees, and the fruit aisles are shocking in their assault on the senses; the smells and colors make them seem actually alive, breathing, like they shouldn't just be sitting stadium-style beside their accompanying plastic bags.  They should be rolling, dancing, jumping.  They should have little top hats and canes, vaudeville acts, like dogs begging you to adopt them at the animal shelter.  I stop and consider a bag of oranges, but don't have enough room left in my arms to carry them.  As I walk past the floral section, I smile at the man leaning against the counter, and he watches me go by.  It might be the pigtails, but it's probably the fact that I'm always wrong whenever I assume I won't need a cart.  The tortillas slide from the crook of my elbow to the tiled floor, slippery as a squirming child. 

One of my best friends has just moved in with her boyfriend.  Three weeks ago, we pursed our lips side-by-side in the mirror of a bar bathroom, and neither one of us had boyfriends.  Each of us had a boy, but we didn't want the whole boyfriend thing, you know, because people are so quick to rush into commitment, and we're just having fun, you know, and we really love what we're doing.  We mean, if we were to see him kissing another girl or something, it'd be over, end of story.  But this totally works.  Yesterday I found out that not only is this boy her boyfriend now, but she's moved into his apartment, and she is simply happy, sublimely happy.  They share a basement room; she hasn't been back to her old apartment in weeks, except to get her toothbrush and a fresh pair of pajamas.  She comes home to find that he has done laundry, carefully folded two pairs of her jeans.  He is in love with her; I could tell when I sat next to them together that night.  You could see it in the way he watched her.  Anyone could have seen it.  I'm glad for her.  She deserves that. 

The cashier is a girl my age; she is hardly impressed by the pigtails.  She overcharges me for the red bell pepper and I am too tired to care; I think of myself as a grocery martyr instead.  She bags everything in plastic bags, which I hate, but it's done by the time I notice and so I just say "thank you" and pick everything up to leave.  I wonder what she thinks as I'm walking away, jangling my keys in one hand like I'm looking forward to something.  I wonder if she assumes that I'm going home to someone, that there is someone else inside my warm apartment eagerly awaiting the perfect vanilla soy milk.  When I walk in the door, bringing the cold with me in a rush, he'll turn around, grin broadly.  My cheeks will be pink from the cold and from his smile. 

Walking out to my car, I pass an older couple, both talking at the same time, gesturing with the hands closest to each other.  I open the back door, and the plastic bags rustle as I set them inside; they settle unsteadily.  I start my car and, driving home in the dark, I know that if I call him right now, he will realize that it was just an excuse to talk to him.  Zucchini looks like cucumber.  When I get to my apartment, I unload the groceries and realize that I am no longer hungry.  I take off my jeans, the bottoms wet and frozen from the snowy ground, and lay them on the radiator to dry.  The room is silent, feels harrowing, and the solitude fills the space.  Above me, I can hear my upstairs neighbor reading to his one-year-old daughter.  He is talking in a kind, soft, sing-songy way that is familiar and comforting.  I can't hear the words, but I can imagine them.  The tears come quickly, before I even know they're there.


What are your plans for the summer?

I plan on reading books about how to be the best gosh darned English teacher to ever grace a high school desk... teacher's desk that is.  I'm also going to babysit/brainwash my little sister.  Hopefully I'll get a job at some mindless place as well.  Plus, I'm going to plan the wedding of the century.
- Kelly Winfrey

When I'm not working: golfing from my back porch while drinking margaritas, working on a few short films, reading/writing scripts, having campfires, camping, road trip, rock climbing, ultimate frisbee, and all before being in bed by sun-down.
- Chadd Kaiser

I hope to be interning for a women's magazine in Indianapolis.  I also would like to do some freelance writing in order to build up a portfolio.
- Jodi Luif

This summer I will be working at a pro shop and coaching golf lessons for children.  For fun, I plan on playing golf as much as possible (surprise surprise) and finally getting around to reading that long list of books that everyone has suggested to me!
- Kacie Parge

I need to get a job.  I only have ninety-one dollars in my bank account.  I don't know where it went.  Right now, I don't know what I'm going to do in the next thirteen hours because my thesis isn't done.
- Jaime "Captain Negative Pants" Calder

I'm going to go backpacking through Europe, visit Amsterdam, lose myself in a haze, and wind up living in a box for the next ten years.
- Andrea Madden

After graduation, I will be moving to Middletown, Ohio. Never heard of it? That's because it is in the middle of no man's land. I hopefully will find a job that has to do with my English major. If not, then I will settle for less and work on some free writing - see what the major does to people?
- Morgan Mikita

I'm going to read books that I don't have time to read during the school year, knit myself a sweater, and figure out how to cook a cookie with butterscotch and chocolate in it.
- Kaitlin "Kitten" Horst



Cultural Events Calendar

The Cultural Events Calendar is a monthly update on the special activities going on at Monmouth College and other campuses such as Western, Knox, and Augustana.


Writing Labs

Monday - Thursday                 3:00-5:00  pm
  Sunday - Thursday                 7:00-10:00 pm
Math Monday - Thursday                 3:00 - 5:00 pm
  Sunday - Thursday                 7:00 - 9:00 pm
Spanish Monday and Thursday             7:00 - 8:00 pm
  Tuesday and Wednesday         7:00 - 9:00 pm
French Tuesday and Thursday            7:00 - 9:00 pm
German Tuesday and Thursday            6:00 - 7:00 pm
Japanese Monday                                3:00 - 5:00 pm
  Thursday                              4:00 - 5:00 pm

          By appointment Only
            (3rd Floor of Wallace Hall)


Photograph courtesy of Kaitlin "Kitten" Horst  

Two students enthusiastically smash a pie in the face of a much beloved English professor during a Founder's Day charity event.


Photograph courtesy of Johnathan Skidmore  

Enthralled, students follow along in their programs as faculty members read selected poems at "Voices and Verse: an Afternoon of Poetry Read by Monmouth College Faculty."  The event was a success, overfilling the Morgan Room and causing several members of the audience to sit on the ground.


Photograph courtesy of Johnathan Skidmore  

Several members of the faculty chuckle at a particularly bawdy poem read by one of their colleagues during the poetry reading.

Photograph courtesy of Johnathan Skidmore  

Professor Marjorie Bond gives a passionate reading of "Curfew Must Not Ring Tonight," by Rosa Hartwick Thorpe.

Photograph courtesy of Kaitlin "Kitten" Horst  

Several English majors celebrate the completion of their senior thesis projects after a late night of stressful writing and dangerous caffeine ingestion.





Jamie Jasmer                                       Johnathan Skidmore                      

Megan Carlson


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