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Meet the Writing Center Tutors

Elaine MacDougall – Writing Center Director

Elaine has been teaching composition courses since 2004 at various colleges and universities in the Baltimore area. She loves her current position as Director of the Writing Center at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County because she gets to work with an amazing, bright group of undergraduates. Elaine is passionate about service, so her connection with the Writing Center allows her to bring two of her favorite things together.


Major(s)/Minor: Biological Sciences B.A. Major, Psychology & Creative Writing Double Minor
Strengths: Focusing the essay, incorporating evidence, word choice, grammar and clarity.
About me: I am a lover of the arts and gifted in it as well. I like to listen to all kinds of music, draw portraits of people, and read and write fictional stories in my free time which is why I choose to minor in Creative Writing. I am also a human biology nerd, so I love to learn new things about the human body and how different diseases can alter the normal functions of the body, hence why I am majoring in Biological Sciences, all to become an infectious disease doctor. Last but not least, I love learning about the human mind, how it works and why people act the way they do, which is why I’m minoring in Psychology.


Major(s)/Minor: English Literature
Strengths: Analysis, quote integration, organization, and pre-writing.
About me: I love all forms of expression and, as an aspiring author, I love to write and help others do so. I love to eat and play video games, but you might catch me outside enjoying nature and reading as well!


Major/Minor: English Literature and Media and Communication Studies
Strengths: Organization, word choice, and clarity
About me: Noteworthy facts about me: ardent kombucha fan (GTS Synergy brand only); David Sedaris enthusiast; dedicated honeycrisp apple advocate (it’s the superior apple); fervent semicolon, colon, and em dash user.


Major/Minor: Media and Communication Studies Major; Writing Minor
Strengths: Organization, grammar, and brainstorming
About me: I love learning new things, which is one thing that I appreciate about working in the Writing Center because I have the opportunity to learn about new topics when I read or listen to what people bring to the center. Some of the things that I enjoy are reading novels, writing, playing sports, and doing art (calligraphy, crocheting, etc.).


Major/Minor: Double Major in English Literature and Psychology, Minor in Creative Writing
Strengths: I’m really good at arguments, creative writing, concision, and grammar!
About me: Hi, I’m Maddie! Reading and writing are some of my favorite hobbies. I love being able to help other students improve their writing and become more confident in their abilities. In the future, I hope to be an editor or a therapist. In my free time, I enjoy creative writing, D&D, and video games.

Justin S.

Major(s)/Minor: Computer Science
Strengths: Clarity and conciseness, analysis, organization
About me: I’ve been interested in macOS/iOS internals for as long as I can remember. Outside of the Writing Center, you’ll find me typing away at my computer, working on my debugger.


Major/Minor: English Literature Major, Secondary Education Certificate
Strengths: Brainstorming, outlining, research strategies, and clarity
About me: I am an avid lover of tea, books, and rainy-day naps, and I probably get a little too excited about any opportunity to get bubble tea with my friends. I love going on little adventures with my friends, and playing music in my free time.


Major/Minor: Biochemistry and Psychology
Strengths: Outlining/organization, clarity/cohesion, word choice, grammar/proofreading
About me: I can’t live without music, and I love watching men’s basketball (NBA and college). I’m interested in practically anything related to psychology, and I’m an advocate for mental health awareness. I’m a great listener and value the inclusion of one’s personal voice to their writing. I enjoy working in the Writing Center because I can help others, who may be apprehensive of their writing abilities (like myself), create writing that they can be proud of!


Major/Minor: Global Studies and Political Science, Arabic Language and Culture minor, Spanish Studies certificate
Strengths: Creative organization, comma usage, clarity, introduction paragraphs
About me: As someone with a wide variety of interests, I use writing to connect my passions for world news, languages, and journalism. I am a Sondheim Public Affairs Scholar, the assistant news editor for The Retriever, and a member of the Honors College and Phi Mu Fraternity for Women. Outside of school, I love to travel! I have been to many countries in Europe and visited Ghana with Global Brigades in March 2019. I will be studying abroad in South Africa in June 2020 and Jordan in Fall 2020.


Major/Minor: Applied Linguistics and Media & Communications Studies, Minor in German
Strengths: Grammar, word choice, flow, sentence structure, outlines for argumentative essays, personal statements, and anything MCS
About me: I love being onstage, and when I’m not at the Writing Center, you can find me performing here on campus with the Mama’s Boys a cappella group or AF Theatre Co. I also work with UMBC Admissions and have been a tour guide-in-training, a panelist, and an OPA. I have a passion for language and the world, and I’m always down for trivia.


Major/Minor: Graphic Design Major, Information Systems Minor
Strengths: Coherence, transitions, organization, word choice
About me: When I’m not in at the Writing Center, you can also find me working at commonvision as a designer. I see many similarities between graphic design and writing, in that each have a goal of effectively communicating a message. In my free time, I enjoy running, hiking, or searching for good food in Baltimore.


Major/Minor: Music Composition Major, Computer Science Minor
Strengths: Organization, word choice, comma placement, and clarity.
About me: As a lover of both music and writing, I am a firm believer in the power of clear and expressive communication. I play cello in the UMBC orchestra and other ensembles and premiere pieces I have written almost every semester, so check out the UMBC music calendar for concerts I’ll be in! Outside of school, I love biking, playing with cats, and seeing live music.


Major/Minor: English major and Political Science minor
Strengths: Grammar, Essay Structure/Thesis development, ESL tutoring experience
About me: I am a Pre-law student with a special interest in writing. I have also been a lifelong tutor, and I am able to merge my interests here in the writing center! Outside of school, I am a huge Dungeons & Dragons nerd and I am always reading. Fun fact about me is that I have 3 jobs, 2 of which are on campus!

Olivia M.

Major/Minor: Animation B.F.A.
Strengths: Creative Writing (Fiction, Nonfiction, Poetry), Literature, Screenwriting/Scriptwriting, Essays, Personal Statements
About me: I began working for the Writing Center my junior year, both in-person and online. I am articulate and patient and can explain information in different ways for your best understanding. My goal in every session is to pinpoint what’s good, what needs work, and what your next steps should be in your writing. I am very versed in the realm of fiction, being both an avid reader and sf/fantasy writer, so please bring me your creative pieces or book reports, I will love it! You can also find me on campus focusing on art and leading Swim Club.


Major/Minor: Health Administration and Policy Major, Psychology Minor
Strengths: Grammar, clarity, flow, argument analysis
About me: I’ve always valued spending time with my family and friends: board games and card games have long been one of the ways that I’m able to do this, and I adore them! I also love movies — It’s A Wonderful Life will never be dethroned as the best there is, as far as I’m concerned. I’m passionate about self-improvement and building people up, along with celebrating acts of kindness and learning to listen to others authentically.


Major/Minor: Psychology and Media & Communication Studies double major, Honors College student
Strengths: APA formatting, research, word choice, outlines/drafts, grammar/spelling
About me: I love reading and writing everything from poetry to academic papers, and I would be more than happy to work with you on any form of writing, especially assignments about psychology, sociology, diversity studies, and/or pop culture. My skills include conducting research, APA-style writing (I am published in the Journal of Sexual and Relationship Therapy), grammar/spelling, and consuming large amounts of caffeine.


Major/Minor: English Major, Computer Science Major
Strengths: Organization, Thesis/Argument Development, Planning and Brainstorming
About me: Writing is always something that I have been interested in, and tutoring has helped me discover even more about the writing process! I am a junior and have been working at the Writing Center for about three semesters. Recently, I’ve been spending my free time watching soap operas on Netflix and listening to music.


Major/Minor: English Literature with Secondary Education Certificate
Strengths: Communication, Experienced in writing with an argumentative style, Good at translating and finding the meaning of a text
About me: I love to write. I believe that more people would love to write if their ambitions were met with encouragement rather than criticism. It is important for people to share their writing openly, knowing that it will be met with praise and constructive criticism rather than obstructed by petty nitpicking. Writing is the most powerful form of communication and we need more students to share that power.


Major/Minor: Political Science Major and Dance Minor
Strengths: Developing a thesis statement, Structuring papers, and Transitions
About me: I am currently a sophomore and working toward going to law school! As an aspiring lawyer, I value writing and enjoy helping others find their own voice through their writing. In addition to law, I also have a passion for dance. I love to perform and attend performances done by others. Outside of school, I like to spend my time listening to music and doing outdoor activities.


Major/Minor: Biological Sciences B.S. Major & History Minor
Strengths: Organization, Flow, Clarity, Brainstorming
About me: I love learning new things and one of my favorite parts of working in the Writing Center is engaging in conversations with students to understand their topics and perspectives on it. Despite being a biology major, I believe writing is an extremely important form of communication and is an excellent artistic outlet to relieve stress. When I am not working at the Writing Center, you may find me hanging out with my friends, taking part in STAR club and Red Cross events, or reading a book from the library.


Major/Minor: English Major, Gender and Women’s Studies Minor, French Certificate
Strengths: Creative writing, Analytical papers, Grammar and mechanical editing, Facilitating brainstorming and prewriting
About me: I love helping others with writing, because language is such an important part of my life. I have enjoyed writing and reading since I was little, but I’ve also always struggled with it; I know how hard the pressure of writing can be, and I want to be a resource for support.


Major/Minor: English Literature
Strengths: Organization, thesis, analyzing books, and listening to the tutee’s concerns
About me: I am a third year transfer student from AACC. I became an English Lit major because of my love for reading, analyzing books, and writing essays. I love writing because you have the chance to bring about change to certain issues whether they be social justice issues, women’s empowerment, environmental issues, or anything else you’re passionate about. I think the main reason I became a tutor is to help others with their writing and get them more excited about writing essays.


Major/Minor: I am an English Major(Communication & Technology Track) and I am working on Minors in History and Music.
Strengths: I am good at catching tiny mistakes in writing, developing strong personal arguments or consistent main ideas, making sentences less wordy and rearranging them, and I can also help with motivation to write. I also tend to know a quite a bit more about writing fiction or creative nonfiction.
About me: I came into college without any AP credits, hoping that somehow I’d become a better writer. Through teaching myself to learn as much I can, I was surprised when in Fall 2018, my sophomore year, I was recommended to be a writing tutor. Now I am a Junior, and I still balance the gloriously tough life of a student athlete. I compete in Cross country and track, so catch me running around campus. I am in love with words and want to become a novel writer one day and help other writers as a publishing editor.


Major/Minor: English major (literature track), Media and Communication Studies major, Music minor, Writing minor
Strengths: Developing a topic, incorporating evidence, organizing ideas
About me: Along with being a tutor, I am also fortunate enough to be able to use my writing skills in several other positions. I currently work as an editorial intern at the UMBC Magazine and as the news editor at The Retriever, and I contribute theatre reviews to MD Theatre Guide. I’m practically always writing, but when I’m not, I can be found directing or performing in shows with UMBC’s Musical Theatre Club.


Major/Minor: Biological Sciences (Major)
Strengths: Sentence structure, Organization, Grammar, and Brainstorming
About me: I am a senior, and pre-medical student. When I am not in the writing center, I am working in Dr. Burns’s lab on Harvestmen Identification. I believe that writing is a great form of communication. As a French native speaker, I want to help and guide others the way is was done for me when I started learning English. To take a break from UMBC stress, I eat, sleep, watch action movies or sing.


Major/Minor: Mechanical Engineering
Strengths: Finding flow between paragraphs, correcting grammar, asking questions to allow the student to expand upon ideas, and referencing resources
About me: Hello, I’m Julian Arrington and this is my second semester working as a writing tutor. I joined the Writing Center to just help guide students in the right direction and find some part of writing that they can actually enjoy. Outside of the writing center, I like to paint shoes in my free time. ( @misterjcustoms on Instagram 🙂 )


Major/Minor: Information Systems and Economics
Strengths: Brainstorming, Outlining, grammar, Organization and introductions
About me: I chose to become a writing tutor not only to help students with their writing but to also improve as a writer as well. A couple fun facts about me are I love to draw and I collect model cars. In my free time, I also watch a lot of tv shows. My favorite genre is fantasy.


Major/Minor: English – Communications & Technology
Strengths: Grammar, word choice, quote integration, organization, and research strategies
About me: I was born in South Korea and raised in Michigan, and I transferred here last year. I’m still getting to know the area and I love getting recommendations for places to visit! I have a Vizsla / chocolate lab mix named Sona and she is the sweetest little baby angel anyone will ever meet. Just like her, I am a great listener. I want to make sure your voice is heard through your writing. I also work at the Reference desk (located right across from the Writing Center), so feel free to stop by for research help!


Major/Minor: English Literature; Creative Writing minor
Strengths: Creative pieces, Literary criticism/analysis, Prewriting, Grammar & Mechanics
About me: I love helping others hone their own voices in their writing and exploring representations of gender, sexuality, and desire within literary texts. Beyond academics, I’m a poet and photographer. When I’m not on campus, I’m usually at home with my three cats. My heart mostly belongs to Shakespeare and Carly Rae Jepsen!