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Meet Our Staff

David Sumner, Director

DSI have been directing both Linfield’s Writing Program and Writing Center since 2004.  Before that, I taught, and was director of writing at Weber State University in Ogden, Utah. I received my PhD from the University of Oregon in 2000. I am very interested in writing and rhetoric and I teach American and environmental literature in the English and environmental studies departments. When I’m not reading, writing, teaching, or researching, I enjoy wandering wild landscapes with my family and my fly rod.


Lacey Dykgraaf, Assistant Director 

LGLacey Dykgraaf is a senior Marketing and English double major. She is the assistant director of the writing center and the Vice President of Programming for the ASLC. She enjoys hiking, traveling, coffee, and reading good books.  Lacey is well versed in writing for both English and business classes and will be overly excited about helping with any INQS paper. She is confident in MLA, organization, and can help in any stage of the writing process. 

Erika Phillipo

EPErika Phillipo is a senior Psychology and Religious Studies double major. She is the goalie for the women's lacrosse team. When she's not working or playing lacrosse, she is either taking care of her kitten or finding new music to listen to (most likely with coffee in hand). Writing research papers is something that she feels very confident in as well as INQS papers. Even though she may not be familiar with the topic of your paper, she is very interested in learning about it! 

Elia Samms

ESElia Samms is a junior anthropology major and Spanish minor. She’s been working for the Writing Center since fall of 2014. She has most experience writing research papers and would be thrilled to help with any part of the research or writing process. That being said, she is also ready and able to be of assistance with any style of paper and loves learning about the different subjects people bring in. Some other areas she is capable in are APA style citation, using Summit/Interlibrary Loan, organization and facilitating brainstorming. Outside of tutoring, Elia enjoys camping, cats, making lists and swing dancing and is president of the Linfield Swing Club. 

Caleb Snodgrass

Caleb Snodgrass is a senior Mathematics major and English Literature minor. Caleb is versed in writing for English, Economics, Philosophy, Mathematics, and for scientific Lab Reports. He can help with argumentation, structure and organization, style, and many other critical areas of effective writing. Caleb is also the President of Math Club, plays on the Ultimate Frisbee team, and competes in debate for the Linfield Speech and Debate team. 

Angelia Saplan 

Angelia Saplan is a senior Creative Writing and Marketing double major, English Lit minor. She currently serves as an Associate Editor for Linfield’s Literary Arts Magazine, Camas, and the Event Coordinator for the Writing Center. Angelia enjoys performing original slam poems, Seahawks football, video games, Rubik’s cubes and believes any day can be made better with a cup of tea and a good book. She left her heart overseas and hopes to return to England for graduate school, become an author and work in the publishing field. She is very experienced in writing literature and marketing papers, MLA format, brainstorming, identifying passive voice, organization and thesis development, as well as creating academic presentations, study abroad essays, and the like. 

Jana Purington

JPDear Writer, 
Jana Purington is a senior double majoring in English and Art. While attempting to stall the inevitable process of becoming a real person, she sews clothes,  samplers and knits (anything that will take an ungodly amount of time to complete), listens to audiobooks so that she can cross them off the list she's had since 2009 (while working on said garment, sampler, or knit), walks, and steals change for her good person fund (which in four years her character has accrued a value of $6.03). She might prove especially useful if you seek her help for, say, an essay on literary works or one of Brian Winkenweder's beast of papers. Or for strategies to cope with  difficulty of writing in general (she recommends wall staring, crying, and wearing very red lipstick (she knows berry/blood colored lips can intimidate words and people alike). These measures, while seeming to display ineptitude, do not make her any less qualified to help others write. Sincerely, Jana Purington (writing in third person) P.S. Sorry this is so long, she just likes to be thorough.

Erica Baran

EBErica Baran is a sophomore English major, Psychology minor following the Pre-Med path. She enjoys attending the theatre, watching movies on rainy days, eating sandwiches, and pointing out every dog that passes by. She can help with most lab report write-ups and almost any essay. She is really good at finding incorrectly used punctuations and words and is always happy to help with these issues. 

Ben Bartu

Ben Bartu is a sophomore majoring in International Relations, with a minor in creative writing. He's starting his first year at the writing center, with the hope that it will make him better at composition of all kinds. He is an avid fan of poetry, board games involving excessive amounts of deception and betrayal, and guacamole. Ben knows little and less about all kinds of subjects, from ecology to religious studies, but is here to try his best to help anyway! Sometimes he has a good thought involving political science, he thinks. He's also good with intro. paragraphs. 

Quinn Riesenman

Quinn Riesenman is a Junior Creative Writing and Religious Studies double major. He enjoys composing overly intricate e-mails instead of doing classwork, learning new words, and undercooking sticky rice so consistently that when it's prepared correctly he becomes critical. He has inherited his grandfather's love of stinky foods, and apologizes to all the classmates that have had to sit in an enclosed space with him on days he has to bring in lunch. Writing-wise he's a good grammarian and a decent syntaxian, and believes that Tralfamadorians exist.

Vera Heidmann

Vera Heidmann is a sophomore Creative Writing major and Psychology minor. She works as an Associate Editor for Camas, Linfield's Literary Magazine. She enjoys writing stories, running cross country, and reading books in her spare time. Vera is always happy to help any way she can no matter what the topic of your paper is. She is particularly confident in the areas of MLA format, paper structure, forming thesis statements, and brainstorming paper topics.