EGO at King John

Introduction to EGO 2019


Dear fellow English graduate students,

Welcome and welcome back! As we begin another exciting semester, some of us for the first time, we’d like to take a moment and introduce our very own English Graduate Organization.

In 2014, English graduate students Chris Pipkin, Brian Chappel, Colleen Weir, Rebecca Vacarro, and Jessica Schnepp came together to form Catholic University’s first English Graduate Organization. The purpose of the organization, or EGO as it soon came to be called, was to provide English graduate students with a more vibrant community. From Christmas parties and faculty brown bag lunches to research colloquia and peer mentoring, EGO supported student development, both socially and professionally. Since then, EGO has continued to develop, and while the organization has changed in some ways, its goal has remained ultimately the same: to support graduate students through the rewarding yet arduous process of English graduate school. Today, EGO is led by Monica Schroeder (President), Victoria McCloskey (Vice President), Amy Marter (Secretary), and Grace Woo (Treasurer and Graduate Student Association Representative). We feel grateful to continue fostering a spirit of support and collegiality within the department and we look forward to serving you throughout the upcoming school year.

All EGO positions are elected by the English graduate students, and positions are held for one to two years. Elections will be held in November for two positions, both of which are currently empty: MA Representative and Events Coordinator. If you are interested in serving on EGO and would like further information on our open positions, please let us know. Service is an essential part of any academic career, both during graduate school and beyond, and I am sure that former EGO members would agree with me when I say that serving on EGO is a rewarding and enjoyable experience. We’d love to have you.

We look forward to another fantastic year, and we thank you for your interest and support.

As ever, we remain yours, EGO.

Monica Schroeder, President
Victoria McCloskey, Vice President
Amy Marter, Secretary
Grace Woo, Treasurer and GSA Representative


EGO logo
EGO is currently planning a number of exciting events for the Fall. Please see below for a list of the events you can look forward to in the coming weeks. We hope you join us!

Opening Reception
We will host a reception in the beginning of September to welcome our new graduate students to the department. We hope you will join us for an hour of collegial mingling with our department students and faculty; details forthcoming via email.

Graduate Student Q&A
Success in the program depends on much more than doing well in coursework and fostering relationships with professors; it also depends on making connections with senior graduate students who can help guide you through the process. To that end, EGO will host a Grad Student Q&A in which junior graduate students will have the opportunity to chat with more senior graduate students as well as recent graduates about any questions they might have. We will send out more information once plans are finalized.

English/Philosophy/Theology and Religious Studies Meet and Greet
EGO is currently collaborating with the graduate students of Philosophy and Theology to hold an English/Philosophy/Theology meet and greet. This will be an excellent time to eat food, drink wine, and informally discuss ways that FYE teaching fellows and English writing center instructors can better collaborate and communicate.

Other events
EGO also hosts a number of smaller social events during the semester; you can look forward to the occasional game night, movie night, and coffee and doughnut hour as well as a fall Happy Hour and a Halloween party.

In addition to our social events, EGO is also dedicated to professional development. We currently organize the EGO Research Colloquia and the Peer Mentorship program, but we are eager to expand our initiatives as your needs require it. Please let us know if there is anything that we can do to further support your professional development.

EGO Research Colloquia
We are happy to announce the continuation of the EGO Research Colloquia, held monthly and open to all graduate students in English. The EGO Research Colloquium offers English graduate students the opportunity to workshop their scholarly writing with fellow graduate students and English department faculty, enables them to develop as researchers and writers, and provides them a unique opportunity to share research with the English department community and to gain experience presenting that research to colleagues.

The EGO Research Colloquium is period-inclusive: a place where graduate students can present scholarship covering any period from Anglo-Saxon England to the present day. Moreover, the EGO Research Colloquium emphasizes the importance of feedback along every stage of the writing process; therefore, the Colloquium accepts work both unpolished and polished: seminar papers (to be revised for publication), journal-length articles, conference-length papers, and dissertation chapters.

Submission Details:
  1. EGO Research Colloquium will send out a monthly call for papers. Our first CFP will be in the coming week. Graduate students wishing to submit seminar papers, journal articles, conference papers, or dissertation chapters to the Colloquium can submit their scholarship to Victoria McCloskey at If you are interested participating as a reader for the October’s Colloquium, please also email Victoria at
  2. Once received, submissions will be disseminated to all graduate students and faculty interested in participating in that month’s colloquium. EGO will also invite particular faculty members based on the month’s particular submissions; for example, if a Renaissance scholar submits a paper, EGO will invite the Department’s Renaissance faculty to attend and offer feedback.
  3. In preparation for the Colloquium, the papers will be read by all graduate students and faculty wishing to participate in the Colloquium.
  4. Fruitful discussions of the papers will take place during the Colloquium. Depending on how polished the submitted draft is, the Colloquium might be formal (as in a conference setting, where the presenter reads aloud before answering questions and receiving feedback) or informal (as in a kind of workshop setting or roundtable, where there is no formal reading, simply discussion and feedback). Upon submission, please indicate which kind of setting would be most helpful for you.
Our first colloquium will take place in October, date TBD. If you are interested in participating in October’s Colloquium, as either presenter or reader, please email Victoria McCloskey (EGO Vice President) at by September 15.

Peer Mentorship
EGO also coordinates peer mentorship in order to further acclimate you to graduate school and to support you throughout the process. If you are a new graduate student, EGO will pair you, based on your background and interests, with one of our more experienced graduate students. You can expect an email within the coming week with more information.