Governance & Committees

The English Student Association (ESA) is a student-run organization that seeks to improve living and working conditions of students enrolled in the CUNY Graduate Center’s English PhD Program by representing their interests. Representation includes expressing the concerns of the students to the faculty and administration as well as relaying information back to the students.

The primary tasks of the ESA are to provide a forum for student concerns, sponsor a network of student mentors, oversee course evaluations, and run the student election process. In addition, the ESA runs an annual conference with faculty participation, open to ESA members as well as students from other institutions.

To get involved, sign up for the ESA listserv, join the ESA Facebook group.

ESA Constitution and By-laws

ESA Budgets (Current and Past)

ESA Meeting Agendas and Minutes


2021–2022 ESA Committee Membership

Former ESA Committee Members can be found here.
See Descriptions of Committee Roles and Statements from current and former committee members here.

ESA Co-chairs
Facilitate discussion among members; act as liaisons between the student body and the Executive Officer; organize ESA meetings; serve on the Executive Committee ex officio.

  • Will Arguelles
  • Genevieve Bettendorf
  • Olivia Wood

Admissions and Financial Aid
Joint program-ESA committee. Read applications and work with faculty to make recommendations for offers of admission.

  • Sharanya Dutta
  • Christian Fryer-Davis
  • Sylvia Korman
  • Christian Lewis
  • Nik Valdez
  • Jeff Voss
  • Mitchell Wilson
  • Inma Zanoguera

Alumni and Fundraising
ESA-only committee. Maintain alumni contact info; organize career panels, readings, and other social and scholarly events; create a yearly alumni newsletter with department updates and alumni publications.

  • [open]

ESA-only committee. Organize and run ESA conference; distribute a CFP; screen submissions; advertise conference; direct participants and volunteers on the day of the event. Title: “End Times: Approaches to the Apocalypse”

  • [open]

Course Assessment
ESA-only committee. Oversee the dissemination, collection, and transcription of course evaluations.

  • [open]

Joint program-ESA committee. Regularly review the program’s requirements and make recommendations.

  • Vallerie Matos
  • Katharine Williams

Joint program-ESA committee. Attend to matters of diversity within the Program. As of May 2017, Diversity officers are drawn from members of program committees to better be able to represent diversity concerns across all areas of program governance.

  • Filipa Calado
  • Miranda Hajduk
  • Sharifa Hampton
  • Janelle Poe
  • Emily Price
  • Eric Dean Wilson
  • Inma Zanoguera

ESA-only committee. Conduct the election of student committee members and ESA Co-chairs; Responsible for including any valid proposed amendments to the ESA by-laws on the ballot.

  • Onur Ayaz
  • Christian Fryer-Davis

Joint program-ESA committee. This committee is the chief governing body of the English Program. It meets about once a month, including Open Meetings at the end of each semester.

  • Cary Fitzgerald
  • Sukie Kim

Faculty Membership
Joint program-ESA committee. Consider changes in the doctoral faculty membership; publicize searches for new members; make recommendations to the Executive Committee.

  • Cary Fitzgerald
  • Andre Perez
  • Alexa Punnamkuzhyil

Friday Forum Committee
Joint program-ESA committee. Evaluate the Friday Forum Proposals each semester.

  • Sandra Goldstein-Lehnert
  • Dashara Green

Joint program-ESA committee. Work with the Placement Officer and other faculty members to coordinate job placement efforts.

  • Madeleine Barnes
  • Joseph Caceres
  • Sam O’Hana
  • Rob Yates

Joint program-ESA committee. Recruit potential new students before and during the Open House for admitted students; coordinate the Mentor/Mentee program; coordinate with the Website Committee on materials for the Prospective Students.

  • Madeleine Barnes
  • Miranda Hajduk
  • Sharifa Hampton
  • Alessandra Occhiolini
  • Katharine Williams

Representative Outreach
ESA-only committee. Help disseminate information to ESA members about the events of the program and to leverage their constituent student’s concerns in meetings.

  • Joseph Caceres
  • Sharifa Hampton
  • Sean Nortz
  • Rob Yates

Website and Editorial
ESA-only committee. Maintain the ESA site; update, expand, and organize the website as needed.

  • Zach Muhlbauer

DSC Program Representatives (Non-ESA)

  • [TBD]