Teaching Experience (Formal and Informal)

     Most of my formal teaching experience comes from working as a Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA) at both the University of San Francisco and the University of South Florida. Before transferring to the University of South Florida’s MFA program, I was a GTA at U of San Francisco for the course, Senior Seminar in Writing. Under the instruction of Professor Susan Steinberg, I provided written feedback on the capstone creative writing projects of college seniors. Along with leading discussions of the students’ fiction and poetry during our class’s workshop, I held biweekly individual conferences with students to discuss their work, and I curated personalized reading lists relevant to each of their projects. While my experience at U of San Francisco was vital to my growth as an educator, I transferred to the University of South Florida (USF) to pursue instructor-level teaching opportunities and formal pedagogy training. At U of San Francisco my role as a GTA was to work an aide to the professor.

While this position gave me a lot of experience working with one-on-one with undergraduate students, I started gaining instructor-level experience at USF. Now at USF, I am teaching two sections of Composition I per semester, and I am currently enrolled in a teaching practicum course for composition instructors.

     In addition to formal experience, I have a lot of informal experience with tutoring and teaching adult learners and secondary students. Recently, I spent the past year living in Seoul as a Fulbright Creative Arts grantee. Outside of my research, I volunteered as an English language tutor for North Korean defectors. While I worked with adult learners of every skill level, I particularly enjoyed working with students that have an elementary understanding of English. I tutored one student who essentially only knew the alphabet when we started, and I built a personalized curriculum to help her learn how to read in English. Before becoming a GTA, I tutored 8th-12th graders in creative and expository writing at The Learning Studios, a private tutoring company in Burlingame, California. There, I also created and taught a fifteen-week class for high schoolers called “Storytelling in Film and Fiction.” In class, I facilitated discussions of films and short stories with six students ages fifteen to seventeen. My students completed 3-5 page weekly writing assignments, read writers like John Cheever, Gish Jin, and Zadie Smith, and analyzed films directed by filmmakers like Ryan Coogler, Kathryn Bigelow, and the Coen Brothers.

Kat Lewis at the 2019 Fulbright Conference in South Korea