Becky Sarwate earned her M.A. in English Literature from NEIU in 2007, and she has gone on to build a writing career following two distinct tracks. By day, Becky works as a Communications Manager for HUB International Limited, a $4 billion company and the eighth largest insurance brokerage in the world. Since 2009, she has worked freelance assignments for a number of publications including EDGE Media Network, where she reviews Chicago theater productions. Becky also writes a weekly column for PoliticusUSA.com. In addition, she’s published in RootSpeak magazine, NewCity, Make It Better and StreetWise and authors a personal blog on the Open Salon platform.
Becky was honored in 2012 as NEIU's first-ever English Department Alumni of the Year, recognized for her work connecting Northeastern students and graduates with internships and other job opportunities. She is a five-time National Federation of Press Women award recipient and the current President of the Illinois Woman's Press Association.
Allie Link Morales graduated from NEIU in 2010 with a B.A in English, Language Arts and Secondary Education. After completing her clinical experience and student teaching at Roosevelt High School in CPS, Allie was hired as a full time English Language Arts teacher and the school’s Yearbook Advisor. Allie coached track and field, coordinated special events like Homecoming and prom, served as an active member of the school’s leadership team and as University Liaison. Allie graduated from DePaul University with a Masters in Educational Leadership in 2013. Alongside this work, Allie has maintained a robust research agenda, presented "Finding the Match: Igniting Change as a New Teacher in an Urban Setting" at the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) conference in Las Vegas in 2012 with NEIU professor Dr. Tim Duggan and two other NEIU alumni, Sergio Santillan and Ryan Dooley, and "Through the Eyes of a Survivor - Interacting with a Primary Text" at the Young Adult Literature conference in St. Charles, Illinois in 2014.
Completing her B.A. degree at NEIU in 2011, Trista is now an Assistant Report Coordinator at theAccreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care and is working toward a Master's in Public Health in Health Policy and Administration at UIC, where she currently maintains a 4.0 GPA.
As an English major, Renee used her English studies in conjunction with a minor in Social Change to write a senior project entitled “Racing of Rage,” which outlined the genesis of racial disparity in Black identity. She presented a version of this paper at the Peace and Justice Summit in Memphis TN, in 2012, and she currently revising it for journal publication.
David Weiss is a 2010 graduate of Northeastern Illinois University. As a student at NEIU, David participated in the Sigma Tau Delta English Honors society. Graduating with a BA in English, David attended the John Marshall Law School where he graduated in 2014. During law school David was deployed to Afghanistan and Kuwait as part of the Coast Guard Redeployment Assistance and Inspection Detachment. David is currently the pro bono coordinator for the American Bar Association’s Veterans’ Claims Assistance Network and runs his own law firm. David’s legal focus is on veterans’ issues, particularly veterans’ benefits, discharge upgrades, and assisting conscientious objectors, as well as family law. (photo courtesy of 2Civility.com)
Completing her degree at NEIU in December, 2009, Sabrina is now the associate research director at Crain’s Chicago Business. After spending four years writing and editing in the b2b publishing world, she’s found a home in data journalism. She has her amazing Northeastern teachers, professional mentors and IRE.org (which has fantastic resources for students) to thank for helping her discover this exciting branch of reporting. You can find her OCD all over the pages of Crain’s annual Book of Lists.
Taking her M.A. degree from NEIU in 1995, Erin is in her twentieth year teaching Advanced Placement Lit/Comp, Creative Writing, and Sophomore Honors English at Glenbard South High School in Glen Ellyn, and she laughs every single day. Living in the community where she works, she has become friends with many former students and their parents. Some of them even visit Erin and her family in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, where they live all summer, every summer. Those summers are enormously valuable in terms of exploring and developing other interests: writing, music, travel, painting, photography, keeping Erin fresh to begin every new school year.
"This is one of the only careers where it is possible to strike a reasonable work/life balance," she writes. "In addition to the creative fulfillment of designing curriculum that challenges students to discover and create more than they they think they can, the relationships I've developed with students and fellow teachers have enriched my life beyond anything I could have imagined. Earning a teaching degree was hands down one of the best decisions I ever made."
Nadia finished her BA degree at NEIU with a major in English and a minor in C.M.T. (communications, media, theater) in 2013. She is now working as an Associate Editor for BNP Media's Plumbing Group magazines. Along with attending industry conventions and news conferences, she edits as well as writes features and cover stories.
Completing her BA at NEIU in 2005, PJ is the Project Lead of Artix Entertainment's flagship game, AdventureQuest Worlds, as well as AE's Writing Coordinator. Over her seven years at the company, she has worked with a team of 20 developers to write and produce over 300 weekly storyline and gameplay updates.
PJ found Artix Entertainment in 2006 while working on her graduate degree and battling stacks of poetry and prose submissions as Editor-in-Chief of NEIU's literary magazine, Apocalypse. She was quickly captivated by its engaging, pun-filled storylines. That one random internet search was the beginning of an epic saga that saw her journey across the country, transition from casual game-player to full-time developer and producer, and unlock the secrets of Chronomancy. Along the way, she’s served as the editor of AE's first full-length novel, written for a number of its games, and (surprisingly) learned the most effective way to headbutt a ninja while in high heels.
When Sean graduated from NEIU in 2013, the English Department was proud to see him selected among all December graduates to deliver the student address at Commencement. After accompanying his fiancée to Washington D.C. for her internship the following spring, Sean returned the midwest to begin his doctoral work at the University of Chicago, where he will be focusing on transnational modernism and postmodernism, with particular emphasis on comics, film, and visual culture.
Since earning her Bachelor of Arts in English from Northeastern Illinois University in 2012, Kristina went on to earn her Master’s in Higher Education from Loyola University Chicago in 2014. While completing her graduate study, Kristina served as a Program Coordinator with NEIU’s Office of Student Leadership Development, advising student organizations and overseeing the Leadership Pathways Program. Currently, Kristina works as Coordinator for Off-Campus Student Life at Loyola University Chicago, responsible for managing programs and resources for Loyola’s commuter and resimuter populations.