Meet the Staff

The Center for Writing Excellence is staffed by student writing consultants who are highly trained and come from majors across the campus, including education, English, history, and more. All writing consultants are required to attend a semester-length training course that teaches writing and research processes, writing across the disciplines, interpersonal communication skills, and office policies and protocols.

If you are interested in applying for a job at the Center, and if you have completed the General Education writing sequence (EN 111-112 or EN 111H - 112H) with at least a 3.0 average or above, log in to LionJobs and look for an opening.

Current Center for Writing Excellence Staff:



Maria Kerstiens

Maria Kerstiens

Major(s):  Secondary Education
Minor:       English Language Arts
Role: Writing Consultant  (Certified Tutor)
Writing Strengths:  APA format, Grammar, Content Development
Biography:  Maria is from Summertown, Tennessee. She is a sophomore and a member of the Honors College. She has an interest in theater and is Secretary for the Shoals Theater Guild. Her hobbies include reading, writing, painting, baking, and cracking jokes. She also likes to play the guitar and ukulele. She loves the outdoors and loves to hike and explore. 

 Kara Holden

Kara Pic

Tessa Ivey

Tessa Ivey

Major:  Secondary Education
Minor: English / Language Arts

Role: Writing Consultant (Certified Tutor)

Writing Strengths: MLA Format, Brainstorming, and Grammar
Biography:  Tessa is a junior at UNA. She enjoys hanging out with family and friends, attending church activities, reading, drawing, and everything to do with fast-pitch softball. After she graduates, she plans to teach high school English/Language Arts and coach varsity sports for girls. 

  Allie Roberts


Major:   Professional Writing and History

Minor:   Spanish

Role:   Writing Consultant (Certified Tutor)
Writing Strengths: Grammar and Content Development
Biography:  Allie has a passion for learning as well as helping others learn. She loves to spend time with her family and friends and enjoys reading, writing, running, and listening to music. She is a member of the Honors Program and is VP of Academic Excellence for Alpha Gamma Delta. Upon graduation, she plans to attend law school or graduate school for a doctorate in history. 

 Stone Parker

Stone Parker

Major(s):   English/Professional Writing
Minor:    Sociology 
Role:  Writing Consultant ( Certified Tutor) 
Writing Strengths:     MLA and APA Formats, Brainstorming, Outlining, Content Development 
Biography:    Stone is a senior and is originally from Cullman, Alabama. He enjoys reading, writing, traveling, and taking care of his tuxedo cat, Kit. After he graduates from UNA, he plans to attend another institution and attain a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing degree. 

Tabitha Singleton


Major:  Creative Writing
Role:  Graduate Student Writing Consultant
Writing Strengths: Brainstorming, Content Development, and Grammar
Biography: Tabitha was raised just outside of the Chicagoland area in Illinois. She has received a B.S. in Professional Writing from UNA, where she is currently studying for her master’s degree in creative writing. Outside of class, she enjoys writing and watching comedies with her dog.

Kristina Voss


Major:  Rhetoric and Composition
Role:   Graduate Student Writing Consultant
Writing Strengths:   Editing, Organization, Grammar, Thesis Development, Research, Argument Development
Biography:   Kristina is a first-year graduate student working toward a master's in writing. She graduated from UNA in December 2017 with a bachelor’s degree in technical writing with a minor in human-computer interaction/user experience. After earning her master’s degree, she plans to teach at the college level and work toward a doctorate degree in linguistics. She enjoys reading, writing, music, movies, technology, and animals, not necessarily in that order.

Kathleen Richards

Kathleen Richards
Role:  Director
Biography: Dr. Richards has a master's degree in English literature from UNA and a doctorate degree in English composition and TESOL (Teaching English to Students of Other Languages) from Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Richards has been teaching at UNA for approximately thirteen years. For the first couple of years as an adjunct English composition instructor, she often volunteered to work in writing centers as a tutor. While tutoring and teaching students in English composition, she became fascinated with writing centers and the support they provide for students. Dr. Richards has been directing the UNA Center for Writing Excellence (CWE) for six years. In order for the writing consultants at UNA to be the very best, she initiated the International Tutor Training Program Certification (ITTPC), sponsored by the College Reading and Learning Association (CRLA). Students at UNA can be assured that the writing consultants in the CWE have gone through extensive tutor training and are fully capable of tutoring students in writing across the disciplines.