Rachael Zeleny

Assistant Professor of English/ Writing Program Director

Dr. Zeleny established Alvernia’s Writing Mentors program and continues to oversee the training and support of the students in this program. She conducts faculty and student workshops throughout the year to promote the Writing Across the Curriculum Agenda. In addition, she is the chair of the First-Year Writing committee and provides teaching support and resources for those teaching COM 100 and Com 101. Ask if you wish to be added to the collaborative Blackboard site for writing prompts, rubrics, readings, and more. Dr. Zeleny loves painting, loading the dishwasher incorrectly, and playing superheroes with her precocious daughter. www.rachaelzeleny.com

Educational Background

  • University of Delaware
    Ph.D. Rhetoric and Composition
  • James Madison University
    MA English Literature
  • University of Delaware
    BA English and Art

Areas of Interest

  • First-Year Writing
  • Writing Across the Curriculum
  • Writing Tutors
  • Visual Rhetoric
  • Women’s Rhetoric

Courses Taught

  • First-Year Writing
  • Tutor Training
  • Public Speaking
  • Women’s Literature

Professional Affiliations

  • WPA
  • NCTE
  • MLA
  • Berks County Consortium

Current Projects: “Assignment Literacy Narratives: Formalizing Student Response to Writing Prompts”

Professional Awards

  • Alvernia Innovation Grant, Summer 2016
  • Summer Research Fellow, University of Delaware English Department, Summer 2012
  • Graduate Student Distinguished Teaching Award, University of Delaware English Department, Fall 2011
  • Dissertation Fellowship, University of Delaware English Department, Fall 2011
  • Summer Research Fellow, University of Delaware English Department, Summer 2011
  • John F. Sweeney Fellow, Rockwood Museum, Summer 2010
  • International Research Grant Award, University of Delaware, Summer 2010


  • “Ellen Terry’s Alter Ego: Nance Oldfield and the Rhetoric of the Performer,” accepted at Rhetorica.
  • “Actress for Sale: The Visual Rhetoric of the Female Performer from Paintings to Postcards,” Rhetoric Review, 2013
  • “’Self-Appointed Executioner’: The Late Nineteenth-Century Actress and George Paston’s A Writer of Books,” Journal for Interdisciplinary Studies, 2012.
  • “Ophelia, the Singing Corpse: Pleasure and the Gaze in Where the Wild Roses Grow,” Neo-Victorian Studies, October 2010

Selected Presentations:

  • “Start Spreading the News: Deanlets and the Gendering of Administrative Roles,” RSA, Atlanta, GA, 2016
  • “Creating a Tiny Army: The Role of Writing Mentos in Implementing a WAC Agenda,” CCCC, Houston, TX 2016
  • “Fish Out of Water: The Benefits of Local Connections for JWPAs,” IWCA, Pittsburgh, PA 2015
  • “So We Meet Again: Literature and Rhetoric in the Classroom,” Conference on College Composition and Communication, Las Vegas, NV, March, 2013
  • “Rookies, Greenhorns, and Padawans: Building and Maintaining a Mentoring/Apprentice Initiative in a College Writing Program,” Las Vegas, NV, November 2012
  • “In Vogue? Visual Archeology in the Composition Classroom,” Conference on College Composition and Communication, Atlanta, GA, April 2011.
  • Rosetti’s Rose: Elizabeth Siddal and The Romance of the Rose” Modern Language Association, Los Angeles, CA, January, 2011
  • “Easy Access: Useful and Specific Language and Shared Pedagogy,” Writing Program Administrators Conference, Philadelphia, PA, June, 2010
  • “Spacing Out: Gendered Rhetorical Space in The Woman in White,” Feminism and Rhetoric(s), Lansing, MI, October, 2009
  • “Re-Writing Joseph Harris,” Mid-Atlantic Writing Center Association, York, PA, March, 2009

Contact Information

Rachael Zeleny

Rachael Zeleny

Writing Program Director and Assistant Professor of English and Communication

Francis Hall 218B


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