Pedagogy Faculty

Elizabeth Monske
Associate Professor
M.A.,B.A., Central Michigan University
Ph.D., Bowling Green State University

Elizabeth A. Monske holds a Ph.D. in English with a specialization in Rhetoric and Writing and cognate in Technical Communication from Bowling Green State University.  For three years she taught technical writing courses for Louisiana Tech University and acted as Technical Writing Coordinator.  With research interests in on-line education and faculty training, she has published in Computers and Composition and the Journal of Educational Technology and Society.  Dr. Monske has also presented and given workshops on various aspects of computers and composition and technical communication, i.e. digital identity, eportfolios, and pedagogy, at conferences and faculty seminars.

Kia Richmond
262 Gries Hall
Phone: 906-227-2713

Kia Jane Richmond is in her twelfth year as an English department faculty member. She earned her Ph.D. in English Studies at Illinois State University in 2001. While a longtime resident of Texas, she earned an English (1997), a B.A. in English and Psychology (1986), and a Lifetime Teaching Certificate in Secondary English and Psychology in 1989. Kia earned national certification in Early Adolescence/English Language Arts in 1995.

Kia is the Director of the English Education program at NMU, where she teaches courses in English methods, composition studies, young adult literature, and humanities. She also serves as a university supervisor for student teachers in English at middle/high schools across the Upper Peninsula and Wisconsin.

Kia was awarded NMU’s Excellence in Professional Development Award in 2006 and has received several grants for academic service learning projects. Kia presents regularly at conferences and holds leadership positions in multiple associations and committees on both the national and local .

Kia and her husband, David Neumann, share their home in Marquette with two black-and-white (tuxedo) cats. Since moving to the Upper Peninsula in 2001, Kia and David have enjoyed exploring the U.P and Wisconsin, vacationing in Las Vegas, and searching for authentic Tex-Mex anywhere north of the Mason-Dixon Line.


Laura Soldner
B.S., M.S.,University of Wisconsin-Madison

Laura Soldner, serves as the English Department’s Director of Composition. She mentors and supervises NMU’s thirty-five graduate teaching assistants and chairs several committees in the department.

Laura’s specialties are in composition and reading pedagogy. She has been department’s developmental reading and learning specialist since 1987. Her post-secondary background includes graduate, undergraduate, and community college teaching as well as middle school, high school, and high school completion experience. She holds degrees in Secondary Education English, Curriculum and Instruction with an Emphasis in Reading, as well as Reading Specialist licensure.

Across campus, Laura is also well-known for her advocacy of freshmen success. She currently serves on the Developmental Education Advisory Committee. Laura was also NMU’s original Director for the First Year Experience (FYE) Program from its inception in 1995 until her return to the classroom in 1998. The program’s impact on student retention as well as performance has been featured in national publications such as The Freshman Year Experience Newsletter and Exploring the Evidence: Reporting the Outcomes of First-Year Seminars. Laura was nominated for and was a finalist for the national award recognizing first-year student advocates in 1999, and was awarded NMU’s Excellence in Teaching Award in 2005. In 2010, Laura was chosen for the Outstanding Commitment to the Field of Reading and Study Skills Award given by the College Literacy and Learning Special Interest Group of the International Reading Association.

Laura has co-authored, Communication Counts: Getting It Right in College and Life, in 2008 with Allyn and Bacon. Her latest research focuses on the role of reflection in metacognition and strategies to enhance freshmen success and retention. Her most recent articles have been published in International Journal of the Humanities; The Journal of College Student Retention: Research, Theory, and Practice; and Journal of College Literacy and Learning.


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