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The Graduate Community at Boise State

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Melissa Thom, MA, English Literature

I joined the MA English Literature program at Boise State because it allowed me to stay in this city that I love, Boise.

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I'm both a student and a teacher, which makes for unique opportunities to be on both sides of the assignments, the stress, and the success. What I love most about being a graduate student are the relationships I've formed with my small group of classmates (we have ALL of our classes together), and our professors, who make personal investments in our learning and our academic interests. As students, we all know each other's strengths and weaknesses and lean on each other for support, and ask for a little help in areas we're not so sure about (literary theory is a personal killer for me). As an instructor of English 102, it's easy to put myself back in the shoes of a college freshman to easily understand their abilities, struggles, and excitement. When I'm not being a student or a teacher, I'm enjoying Idaho's great outdoors, amazing restaurants and breweries, and taking my dogs for walks in the foothills.
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Beth Goldner, MFA, Creative Writing

Earning my MFA in Creative Writing continues to be an incredible experience.

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Not only have I been able to grow a fiction writer, but I’ve had the privilege to be a teaching assistant for undergraduate students as well as work on The Idaho Review, the prestigious literary journal that publishes through Boise State University. My entire experience as a graduate student at Boise State has prepared me for a multitude of opportunities in the arts and education. Being a student has also helped me grow as a person, and I am grateful for how my perspective has been shaped by studying in the humanities, opening my eyes to so much that is in front of me. Thanks to amazing faculty and fellow students in the English Department—and the overall support of the University—my time here in the Graduate School has been an experience I will always treasure.
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Patty McClary, Master of Nursing

The program I’m involved in is based on population health.

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My focused interest is the underserved and underinsured residents that reside in rural Gooding, Idaho who have limited access to affordable healthcare. My proposal is the opening of a nurse managed clinic (NMC) within rural Gooding, Idaho to help alleviate financial turmoil to those lacking health insurance and/or financial resources. Nurse-managed clinics can serve as an important safety net in the health care delivery by offering needed services to rural populations. NMC have the potential to be cost-effective while serving medical underserved rural areas and hold great promise in the era of health care reform. In order to justify the importance or need of a NMC, many semesters of rigorous research has been compiled. My research began with a needs assessment of the community. This determined if there was a need for such clinic by identifying the problem/issue of the community. Review and critique of relevant literature was also compiled as well as a foundation such as a conceptual/theoretical framework. I also dug deep into the affordable care act and examined the impact provisions will have on a rural community such as Gooding, Id. The results explored how the rules and guidelines of the ACA will affect the health care system, the community, and the residents of Gooding. All the information and stakeholders involvement have come together to identify that there is a significant need for a NCM. Currently, I’m working on feasibility/work plan of how to develop and sustain a NMC in rural Gooding, Idaho.
Leonie Sutherland has been my backbone in this adventure and without her dedication I probably would not be where I am now. I thank her for her encouragement and professionalism. My short term goal is to get a NCM started in Gooding which I’m hoping will open in fall of 2014. This will be a huge personal accomplishment; my heart is set on helping those who are truly unable to access affordable health care. My other love is to the North Canyon Medical Center where I have worked for nearly 15 years. I stared out in 1998 as a new grad working in the ER and medical floor and now I’m the nursing supervisor, case manager and oversee approx. 30 people. I’m involved in PI, safety, wound care, nursing council and several other committees. What a great opportunity to be involved in decisions that will benefit not only the facility but my co-workers and the community.


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April Janise Raine, Master of Applied Historical Research

The Master of Applied Historical Research Program (MAHR) is an innovative graduate program that applies history in ways which are accessible to those outside of academia.

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For example, MAHR students have the opportunity for internships with historical sites, museums, and city organizations. Currently, I am the Graduate Historian Fellow for the City of Boise Department of Arts & History. Part of my internship includes historical research and community programing. During my internship I coordinated the Sesqui-Speaks lecture series as part of the BOISE 150 sesquicentennial commemoration. My internship with the city is one of the most unique things about the MAHR program, and it has provided incredible experiences that cannot be taught in a classroom.
My thesis focuses on fashion history and popular culture. Studying pop culture can provide a deeper understanding of how people in the past felt about the world around them, especially during times of social upheaval. My thesis addresses three distinct fashion movements, which began at the street or vernacular level. By analyzing an article of clothing produced within those movements I hope to provide a sense of how changing ideas, and cultural context, informs how we understand our past and present.
I chose Boise State University because I love living in Boise!

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Belma Sadikovic, Ed.D, Curriculum and Instruction

Former refugee Belma Sadikovic is using the opportunities she found in the United States to not only improve her own life, but also to help other refugees succeed.

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“As a former refugee and minority, I feel that it is my duty to pay-forward, encourage, lead by example and show the world that I am a living example of survival, hard, work, passion and success,” said Sadikovic.

Sadikovic’s family fled Bosnia, where she was born, for Germany in 1992. Sadikovic’s family resettled in Boise in 2000.

A curriculum and instruction doctoral student in the College of Education, Sadikovic also works as an adjunct instructor at Boise State, College of Western Idaho, College of Idaho and Treasure Valley Community College in Ontario, Ore. She teaches German, civics, ethical foundations and educational technology as well as other education courses.

At Boise State, Sadikovic serves as a research assistant for Royce Hutson, associate professor of social work, studying how to make Boise a more welcoming experience for refugees relocating here. She also is a research assistant for Casey Keck, assistant professor of English, on project SHINE, which stands for Students Helping In the Naturalization of Elders. The project seeks to create a curriculum for older refugees to learn to read and write English in order for them to function in the community and become citizens.

“The beauty of working for various institutions is to be able to learn different ideas and be open to different ideas,” Sadikovic said. “For me, it leads to a more diverse experience and a more fruitful growth as a teacher.”

“I want to advocate to our society that it is possible to succeed academically, professionally and in everyday life, but we have to be actively involved in working with each other and helping each other,” Sadikovic said. “The beauty of this country is that there are opportunities of many kinds, you simply need to know how to obtain those. My role as a leader and advocate is to help look for and obtain access to opportunities for the people in our society.”

Sadikovic works with nonprofit and community groups in Boise to help refugees and others. She serves on the Adult Learners and Social Integration committees for the city of Boise and works with the English Language Center, World Relief and other groups.

“Along with my colleagues, we have established the Boise State Refugee Alliance to help refugee students. The alliance consists of creative members whose work reflects an awareness and support of the refugees at the university,” Sadikovic said. “It works to raise university awareness, as a concrete tool for helping refugees in their everyday educational challenges in a new location and situation.”

In working with refugees, Sadikovic’s ability to speak several languages comes in handy. During her childhood in Stuttgart, Sadikovic learned German by reading picture books. Besides German, today she has near native fluency in Bosnian, Serbo-Croatian and English and is learning Spanish. “I am proud of my multilingual tongue,” she said.

Sadikovic is learning to cook authentic Bosnian and German dishes. “I am writing a cross-cultural recipe book,” she said. “I would like to form a multi-ethnic cooking club. Who’s interested?”
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Jessica Ewing, MA, English Literature

I have had the opportunity to work as a Teaching Assistant with the First-Year Writing Program,

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managing courses and working with students, and as a Graduate Assistant for Melville's Marginalia Online, developing digital skills and studying 19th century American literature. My research now focuses on critical theory, contemporary literature, and animal studies. Thanks to the opportunities afforded to me by the kind and encouraging faculty, I feel prepared (and eager!) to continue my research in a PhD program.
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Michael Wanzenried, MFA Creative Writing

The MFA graduate program here at Boise State has been fantastic in a lot of ways.

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Seminars have low student-faculty ratios, which has made it easier to get to know my classmates and professors. There's also considerable flexibility for students to choose from a range of classes throughout the English department (literature, creative writing, technical communication, linguistics, and rhetoric/composition). After having time to pursue my writing, the next most important aspect of the MFA are the opportunities to teach and work with people from the Boise State academic community. Last summer I was a fellow with the Boise State Writing Project where I was part of a fantastic teacher training program facilitated by faculty of the English department.