Teaching

Rhea Tregebov began her position as Assistant Professor in the Creative Writing Program at UBC in January 2005. She has taught graduate and undergraduate workshops in poetry, a graduate workshop in children’s literature,  and a mixed grad/undergrad workshop in literary translation and a large enrolment introduction to creative writing lecture course. In July 2012 she was granted tenure and promoted to Associate Professor.

For many years she taught creative writing workshops for the Continuing Studies program at Ryerson University in Toronto, where she specialized in poetry, children’s literature, and autobiographical and biographical creative non-fiction. She also worked with elementary and high school students across Canada for the Writers in Electronic Residency program. She was faculty at the Writers Studio and the Writing with Style programs at the Banff Centre for the Arts on a number of occasions.

At UBC, Tregebov has been thesis advisor or on the thesis committee of the following students:

Kayla Czaga, 2015: Kayla Czaga’s thesis was published as For Your Safety, Please Hold On by Nightwood Editions in 2014. She is the winner of the 2015 Gerald Lampert Award from the League of Canadian Poets for best first book of poetry. Her poem “Victoria Soto” has been published in The Walrus, “observations” and “Another Poem about my Father” in the Antigonish Review, “The Women Here Have Never Heard of Curtain” was longlisted CBC Radio poetry competition.

James O’Hearn,2014: James O’Hearn is a poet, writer, e-learning specialist, and father of three delightful daughters.

Beth Pond (fiction), 2014: Beth Pond graduated summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa from Hendrix College in 2012. In 2013, she taught in South Africa for nine months as part of a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship Grant. Her debut novel, Podium Finish, was released by Astraea Press in November 2013. When she’s not writing, Pond enjoys martial arts (she’s a 1st degree black belt) and serving as a volunteer coach for her brother’s special needs baseball team.

Nikki Vogel (fiction)2014: Nikki Vogel lives in Edmonton, Alberta. She’s had poetry published in Room Magazine, Filling Station, and The Istanbul Review. Her short stories have appeared in Luna Station Quarterly, Infective Ink and Empty Sink Publications. She was a runner up in the 2012 Little Bird Writing Contest and has stories in two anthologies:You Can’t Kill Me, I’m Already Dead and Behind the Yellow Wallpaper New Tales of Madness. One Throne Magazine published “The Past, of Course” and nominated it for the Journey Prize. Wonderlandpress.com listed it as one of the best short stories of 2014, and it also was listed as notable in The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2015. She is currently represented by The Cooke Agency. Her Twitter handle is @NikkiVogel1.

Joelle Barron, 2014: Joelle Barron is a poet, writer and labour doula living and working in Fort Frances, Ontario. She has been practicing as a labour doula since 2015. Her writing has been published in The Malahat Review, ARC Poetry Magazine, The Dalhousie Review, The New Quarterly, Plentitude Magazine, and others.

Ruth Daniell, 2013: Ruth Daniell is an award-winning Canadian writer and the editor of Boobs: Women Explore What It Means to Have Breasts (Caitlin Press, 2016). Originally from Prince George, BC, she currently lives and writes in Vancouver, where she teaches speech arts and writing at the Bolton Academy of Spoken Arts. She is also the founder and organizer of a literary reading series called Swoon, which focuses on discovering new and innovative work about love and desire. She holds two diplomas in speech arts performance—her ATCL from Trinity College London and her ARCT from the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. Her poems and stories have appeared or are forthcoming in various journals across North America and elsewhere, including Arc Poetry Magazine, Grain, Room Magazine, Qwerty, Canthius, The Antigonish Review, and Contemporary Verse 2.

Leah Horlick, 2013: Leah Horlick is a writer and poet who grew up as a settler on Treaty Six Cree Territory in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. Her first collection of poetry, Riot Lung (Thistledown Press, 2012), was shortlisted for a 2013 ReLit Award and a Saskatchewan Book Award. Her second collection, For Your Own Good (Caitlin Press, 2015), was recently named a 2016 Stonewall Honour Book by the American Library Association.  She lives on Unceded Coast Salish Territories in Vancouver, where she and her dear friend Esther McPhee co-curate REVERB, a queer and anti-oppressive reading series. In her other life, she moonlights as the Coordinator at Simon Fraser University’s Women’s Centre.

Thea Wilson-Scorgie (MACL), 2013: Originally from Edmonton, Alberta, Thea now lives in the beautiful city of Victoria, BC, with her husband, son, and their miniature dachshund. As a lover of children’s literature, she aspires to publish a work of her own one day; in the meantime, she sporadically writes online book reviews for CM Magazine. She is a former middle school teacher and teacher-librarian at St. Michaels University School. Her love for education, books, and libraries has inspired her to obtain a second masters, a MLIS, and thus, she is currently a graduate student at the University of Alberta.

Natalie Morrill (fiction), 2013: Natalie Morrill’s thesis, “At the Top of the Wall, Alight”, was the winner of the 2015 Harper Collins Publishers/ UBC Prize for Best New Fiction. This powerful, accomplished novel follows the life of a Viennese Jew who is separated from his family during the Second World War and aided by a close friend, who is also a member of the Nazi party. Her fiction has been recognized by the Alberta Magazine Publishers Association (Silver, 2013 Showcase Award for Fiction) and selected for The Journey Prize Stories anthology (2013). Her recent work has appeared in Filling Station, Room, and CAROUSEL, and has been performed at the 2013 Brave New Play Rites Festival at UBC. She has worked as a sessional instructor in the English Department at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, and is an assistant editor for the American literary journal Dappled Things. She was the writer-in-residence at the Northern Initiative for Social Action (NISA) in Sudbury, Ontario.

Emily Davidson, 2012Emily Davidson is a writer from Saint John, NB, living in Vancouver, BC. Her poetry has appeared in publications including ArcDescantThe FiddleheadRoom,subTerrain, and The Best Canadian Poetry 2015. Her fiction has appeared in Grain and was short-listed for The Malahat Review’s 2013 Far Horizons Award for Short Fiction.

Natalie Thompson, 2012:  Natalie Thompson’s work has been published in GrainPRISM InternationalThe TyeeMaisonneuve online, and Descant magazine. Her other passion is teaching.  She taught for and coordinated the UBC Creative Writing Faculty’s program, New Shoots—a high school outreach program that works to introduce that Vancouver School Board students to the joys of writing. She has done one-on-one mentoring for the creative writing program Booming Ground and currently works at the Bolton Academy.

andrea bennett, 2012 (second reader): andrea bennett’s writing has been published by The AtlanticThe Globe and MailThe WalrusMaisonneuveHazlittViceGeistReader’s Digest, and others. Her essay, “Water Upon the Earth,” received gold in the essays category at the 2015 National Magazine Awards; in 2013, her piece “Unmasked: Searching for lessons in Toronto’s 2010 G20 debacle” received an NMA honourable mention in the politics and public interest category. Her first book of poetry, Canoodlers, came out with Nightwood Editions in 2014. She is an associate editor at Maisonneuve, a columnist at This magazine, and the designer for PRISM. In the past, she’s spent time on the mastheads of AdbustersThis, PRISMGeist, and CWILA. Originally from Hamilton, she’s currently living in Montreal.

Karen Shklanka, 2012: Karen Shklanka’s thesis was published as Ceremony of Touching by Coteau Books in  2016. She is a poet, a family physician and an Argentine Tango dance instructor. She received the top mark in Canada from the Canadian College of Family Physicians and spent 18 years practicing rural and emergency medicine in small and medium-sized Canadian communities. Her poetry was long-listed for the 2012 CBC Poetry Prize and has been published recently in CV2 and Room. Her poetry has been included in the Planet Earth Poetry Anthology and the 2004 chapbook anthology, Letters We Never Sent, edited by Patrick Lane. She was twice a finalist in ARC magazine’s international poem contest, in 2005 and 2006, and has been published in numerous other literary periodicals. Her firsrt book of poetry was Sumac’s Red Arms (Coteau),

Kevin Spenst, 2011: Kevin Spenst is the author of Ignite (based on his MA thesis), Jabbering with Bing Bong (Anvil Press) and the chapbooks Pray Goodbye (the Alfred Gustav Press), Retractable (the serif of nottingham), Happy Hollow and the Surrey Suite (self-published), What the Frag Meant (100 tetes press) snap (Pooka Press), and Surrey Sonnets (JackPine press). He has done a one-man show at the Vancouver Fringe Festival and over a hundred readings of his poetry across the country. His work has won the Lush Triumphant Award for Poetry and has most recently appeared in BafterC, Poetry is Dead, Lemon Hound and the anthology Best Canadian Poetry 2014.

Melissa Sawatsky, 2011: Melissa Sawatsky‘s work has appeared in OCW Magazine, QuillsSad Mag, and Rhubarb, among others. She has an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of British Columbia and is currently working on her first book of poetry, a collection of short fiction, and a screenplay for an animated feature. She is an Editor at Evolved Publishing and facilitates a creative writing program for teen girls called “Hot Ink.” In other news, she spends much of her time in libraries (having worked at several), and worships the art of dance (call her a professional audience member and an amateur dancer).

Elizabeth Ross (second reader), 2010: is the author of Kingdom (Palimpsest 2015). Her work has been published in a number of literary magazines, selected for inclusion in Best Canadian Poetry 2013, and longlisted for the CBC poetry prize. She’s from Vancouver Island and Vancouver, where she was poetry editor of PRISM international; she now lives in Toronto, where she’s at work on a series of personal essays and a book of poetry.

Sandra Pettman, 2009: Sandra Pettman’s poetry has been published in The Malahat Review, Vancouver Review, Room, Contemporary Verse 2Prairie Fire and Event. She has attended writing workshops and residencies across Canada (Piper’s Frith, 2009, Sage Hill, 2005, St. Peter’s Abbey, 2005) and in Spain (Fundación Valparaíso, 2009). She lives in Vancouver and works as a freelance writer and social worker.

Shannon Woron, 2009: Shannon Woron has had poetry published in Prairie Fire, Room of One’s Own, and WordWorks for winning third place in the 2009 Federation of BC Writers’ Poetry Contest. Her instructing experience ranges from teaching adults non-fiction at a community centre to leading literary science writing workshops for children at the UBC Michael Smith Labs to teaching fitness and swimming. She studied in the education program at UBC training to teach elementary school.

Elena Johnson, 2009: Elena Johnyson’s thesis was published as Field Notes for the Alpine Tundra by Gaspereau Press in Spring 2015. She was a finalist for the 2011 Alfred G. Bailey Prize for poetry, was longlisted for the 2011 Montreal International Poetry Prize as well as the 2010 CBC Literary Awards. Her work  has  been short-listed for contests in Arc, The Malahat Review and This Magazine.  In 2008 she was writer-in-residence at a remote research station in the Yukon. While studying, she was the recipient of a scholarship from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, the Judith C. Thiele Memorial Scholarship, and a UBC Graduate Entrance Scholarship. She attended the Banff Centre Writing Studio after completing her MFA.  Her poems have been included in the anthologies Rocksalt – Contemporary Poets of British Columbia, The Enpipe Line, and the Montreal International Poetry Prize Longlist Anthology and she has been published in  the Literary Review of Canada,  This Magazine, Arc and dandelion.

Crystal Sikma, 2009: In 2007, Crystal moved from Regina, Saskatchewan to Vancouver to attend the Creative Writing Program at UBC.Her poetry has been included in Fast Forward: New Saskatchewan Poets. She has worked as Poetry Editor for the literary magazine, PRISM international and is the recipient of the Ranjit Singh Azad scholarship for poetry. She worked as Marketing and Outreach Coordinator for the Vancouver Queer Film Festival.

Sheryda Warrener, 2008: Sheryda’s poems have appeared in EventThe FiddleheadGrainHazlitt, The Believer and in the anthology Best Canadian Poetry in English 2013. Her work has been shortlisted for Lemon Hound’s inaugural poetry contest and the Robert Kroetsch Award for Innovative Poetry, among others. Warrener has been a resident at The Banff Centre and the Baltic Centre for Writers and Translators. Her first book was Hard Feelings, and her new collection is Floating Is Everything.

Jamella Hagen, 2008: Jamella Hagen grew up in Hazelton, BC and has lived in Vancouver, Brazil and South Korea. Her poems have appeared in journals across Canada including Arc, Event and The Malahat Reviewas well as in the anthologies Unfurled: Collected Poetry from Northern BC Women, Ice Floe: New and Selected Poems and The Best Canadian Poetry in English, 2010. Her work has won The Fiddlehead’s Ralph Gustafson Poetry Prize, placed third in This Magazine’s Great Canadian Literary Hunt and been shortlisted for a CBC Literary Award. She is a former executive editor of PRISM international and has coordinated the Whitehorse Poetry Festival. She currently lives in Whitehorse, Yukon, where she has worked as an instructor at Yukon College.

Brianna Brash-Nyberg, 2008: Brianna Brash-Nyberg’s poetry has been featured in The Malahat Review, Boulevard, Room, The Antigonish Review and Canadian Literature. Her first published piece of creative non-fiction recently appeared in the Georgia Straight.  She is the recipient several major scholarships and awards for her writing, including the prestigious University Graduate Fellowship, the Maxine SEVACK Memorial Scholarship in non-fiction, and the Ranjit Singh Azard scholarhip in poetry, as well as multiple BC Arts Council awards. She worked as the director of Booming Ground, UBC Creative Writing’s non-credit online writing studio, and taught writing to high school students and single moms. She also worked for many years as a website designer. She currently lives, works and writes in Vancouver, and works for an adoption agency.

Bren Simmers, 2007:  Bren Simmers lives in Squamish, BC. Winner of the Arc Poem of the Year Award, finalist for the Bronwen Wallace Memorial Award and The Malahat Review Long Poem Prize, and longlisted for the CBC Poetry Prize, her first book of poems, Night Gears, was published by Wolsak and Wynn in 2010. Hastings-Sunrise, a book-length poem about her old East Vancouver neighbourhood was published by Nightwood Editions in spring 2015.

Linda Besner, 2007: Linda Besner’s first book of poetry, The Id Kid, was published in 2011 by Véhicule Press and named as one of the National Post’s Best Poetry Books of the Year. Her poetry and journalism have appeared in magazines across Canada, including The Walrus, Maisonneuve, and Hazlitt, and been anthologized in Best Canadian Poetry 2012. In 2015 she was selected as one of the Writers’ Trust’s 5×5 Emerging Artists, and she is on the editorial board of Icehouse Press. Her second collection, Feel Happier in Nine Seconds, is forthcoming in 2017 from Coach House Books. She lives in Montreal.

Regan Taylor, 2007: Regan Taylor did her undergraduate degree in Creative Writing at Concordia University in Montreal studying with Stephanie Bolster. She has reviewed poetry for online magazine, The Dominion. Her poems have been published in the Malahat Review, PRISM international, New Quarterly, and The Fiddlehead.

Ben Hart, 2007: Ben Hart’s writing has appeared in Grain, The Malahat Review, The New Quarterly, Prarie Fire, CV2, PRISM internationalEvent, Existere and is forthcoming in Vallum. He nabbed third place in the 2008 Byron’s Quill Award for Poetry and was an Editor’s Choice in the 2008 Arc Poem of the Year contest. His chapbook, Dough Rolled Perfect, was published by Frog Hollow Press in 2009.  He recently won second prize for fiction in The Antigonish Review’s 6th Sheldon Currie Fiction Contest. He has a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Studies.

Amber Dawn  (fiction), 2007:  Amber Dawn is a writer living on unceded territory of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations (Vancouver, Canada). Her memoir How Poetry Saved My Life: A Hustler’s Memoir won the 2013 Vancouver Book Award. She is the author of the Lambda Award-winning novel Sub Rosa, and editor of the anthologies Fist of the Spider Women: Fear and Queer Desire and With A Rough Tongue. Her newest book Where the words and my body begins is a collection of glosa form poems. She currently teaches creative writing at Douglas College and the University of British Columbia, as well as volunteer mentors at several community-driven art and healing spaces.

Amy Dennis, 2006: In addition to publications in England and France, Amy Dennis’ poetry has appeared in more than a dozen Canadian literary publications, such as CV2EventQueen’s Quarterly, and Prairie FireHer poetry has been nominated for two National Magazine Awards and a Random House Creative Writing Award. She placed second in the UK’s National Bedford Open Poetry Competition. She has completed her PhD in the UK and will be returning to Canada.

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