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MFA Students

Updated August 2018

1st Year

  • Lucas Bailor

    BA, Humanities and Communication, CSU Monterey Bay; MA, English, CSU Northridge

    Writing and research interests: Contemporary poetry and poetics, experimentation, hybrid forms, visual presentation of poems, collage, cut-up, mixed media, ekphrastic poetics, poetics around place, poetics around the body, nonfiction (particularly lyric essay), music.

    Lucas Bailor is from Moreno Valley, California, and is planning to work on projects that experiment with how poems are presented on the page and how they utilize other forms in order to create cross-genre/hybrid projects, particularly focusing on topics of place and the body. His work navigates what it means to write "around" a topic, utilizing the dual nature of the word "around" to mean both to focus in on and to avoid. His work has appeared in Ghost City Press, HVTN, and SHARKPACK Poetry Review, among other publications. He is currently a poetry reader for Gigantic Sequins and Bodega Magazine.

    Selected publications:
    "Love's Refrain" (free PDF)
    "Remembering You"

    Website and additional publications: https://lucasbailor.wixsite.com/writing/publications 

  • Carlito Beal

    BA, English and Sociology, College of the Holy Cross


  • Klara Feenstra

    BA, American Literature with Creative Writing, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK


  • Townsend Montilla

    BA and MA, English Literature, University of Puerto Rico at Rio Piedras


  • Siloh Radovsky

    BA, Creative Writing, Evergreen State College

    Writing and research interests: Prose; critical poetics; new narrative; medicine; history of science; structures of belonging (including but not limited to citizenship); twee; religious studies; food and eating; the contemporary condition of social entrepreneurship.

    Siloh Radovsky is a writer and visual artist. Key topics of literary and research interest for Siloh include medicine, objectivity, spirituality, and senses of spatial belonging, especially as connected to aesthetics and legacies of institutional violence. She spent time as a Hinge Arts resident at the Kirbride, the vacant site of a former state mental hospital, and she is interested in literary engagements with places of transition, abandon, and ambiguity. The author of numerous illustrated zines, her work has also been published in Teen Vogue, Inkwell , and Olympia’s small-scale Sundae Theory. 

    Website and additional publications: siloradovsky.net.

  • Adriana Tosun

    BA, English, French (Linguistics), Rutgers University


  • Wambui Wainaina

    BA, individualized major, New York University


2nd Year

  • Tina Lawson

    T. M. Lawson

    BA, English, Creative Writing, UCLA

    Writing and research interests: Open poetics, hybrid prose with more integration with visual aesthetics (including typography, collages, and origami), nature motifs, trans/feminist/animal subject matter, sexuality, interpersonal relationships, the acts of consumption and cannibalism, the human body, social justice (abuse, aggression, and violence of all varieties) within our contemporary global-Western culture.

    T.M. Lawson is working with open poetics, leaning into hybrid prose, with more integration with visual aesthetics (including typography, collages, and origami). They gravitates toward nature motifs, as well as trans/feminist/animal subject matter, investigating sexuality, interpersonal relationships, the acts of consumption and cannibalism, and the human body, as well as highlighting moral values against social justice (abuse, aggression, and violence of all varieties) within our contemporary global-Western culture.

    Published in Los Angeles Review, White Stag, Entropy Magazine, and Poets.org. Editor for Angel City Review.

    Selected publications: Bonsai Bondage (.docx)

  • Ayden LeRoux

    Ayden LeRoux

    BA, The Interaction of Text and Image, Gallatin School of Individualized Study, New York University

    Writing and research interests: Prose, poetry, experimental forms, visual art, aesthetics, material poetics, gender and sexuality, food studies, linguistics, pilgrimage.

    Ayden LeRoux is an artist, author, educator, and critic from New England. Her work explores embodiment, the sensory, illness, and prophecy. LeRoux’ photography, performance, video, and installations have been presented in solo exhibitions at IDIO Gallery, Flux Factory, and the Institute for American Art (IFAA). She has participated in residencies at A-Z West, the ACE Hotel, and the Alaskan Parks & Recreation Department. Her writing has been published by Electric Literature, Los Angeles Review of Books, edibleManhattan, and Cosmonauts Avenue, among others. In addition to her own practice, Ayden collaborates frequently and is the Assistant Director of Odyssey Works, a performance group that studies the life of one individual and makes immersive, durational experiences for that person. She is the author of two books on their work, Isolation and Amazement (Samsara Press, 2012), and Odyssey Works: Transformative Experiences for an Audience of One (Princeton Architectural Press, 2016) co-authored with Abraham Burickson. 

    Selected publications:
    Odyssey Works (Princeton Architectural Press, 2016)
    Excerpts from "Every Bed I've Ever Slept In," Cosmonauts Avenue 
    "The Art of Attention," Electric Literature

  • Evelyn Murdock

    Evelyn Sassafras Murdock

    BA, English and Theatre with a focus on Dramaturgy, University of Alabama in Huntsville

    Writing and research interests: noise, process poetics, improvisation, the Gothic, the grotesque, the absurd, counter-culture movements, queerness, labor movements, addiction and recovery, sci-fi, animation.

    Evelyn Sassafras Murdock went to school to study Biology after her band broke up and accidentally became a poet. Her work has been featured in publications such as WUSSY, The Rectangle, and Fuck Art/Let's Dance, but her best work is the private readings she does for her dog, Roccotillo.

    Selected publications:

  • Alison A. Ogunmokun

    Alison A. Ogunmokun

    BA, English, DePaul University

    Writing and research interests: African American Studies, American Literature, Black Diaspora, Relationships, Malawian Culture, Nigerian Culture, First Generation American essays and poetry, Jazz, Harlem Renaissance, and Social Justice.

    Alison A. Ogunmokun is a zesty girl with a deep passion for moisturizing from Bloomington, IL. She's a writer, comedian, and MFA candidate at the University of California in San Diego. Born to Nigerian and Malawian immigrant parents, Alison writes about the intersection of her often marginalized identities. She was the co-curator of a Live Lit show in Chicago that featured women and non-binary artists called 'Spread Your Own Gossip'.

3rd Year

  • Zachary Bushnell

    Zachary Tichauer Bushnell

    BA, Literature and Creative Writing

    Writing and research interests: Prose, poetry, theory, performance, game, situation, surveillance, artificial intelligence, artificial life, relation, involvement, event, divination, music, anatomy, hacking.

    Zachary Tichauer Bushnell writes and performs work concerned with the position of an observer in, of and for a world proven to be altered by observation. His essays, stories and poems have been published in Juked, Poetry at Sangam and No Guarantees.

    Selected publications: http://poetry.sangamhouse.org/2016/07/zachary-bushnell/

  • Valentina Calvache

    Valentina Calvache

    BA, Communication, Universidad Javeriana (Bogotá, Colombia)

    Writing and research interests: Prose. Translation, Digital Humanities, Pop Culture, Cultural Production, Hispanics/Latinos in the United States, Internet Architecture, Fashion.

    Valentina Calvache is a bilingual writer concerned with the liminal intersections between fiction, fashion and cultural production. Her work has been published in, among others, Exclama, Don Juan, Revista Antioquia, Bacánika, Antología de cuento Instituto Caro y Cuervo, & Alchemy.

    Selected publications:
    Pure Blaze (.docx)

  • Estefani Loza Torre

    Estefani (Gidi) Loza Torre

    BA, Philosophy

    Writing and research interests: Poetry; Poetics; Creative Writing; 20th and 21st Century American Literature; Critical Theory; Gender Studies.

    Gidi Loza is a poet, small press publisher and translator. She is the author of Conversations With a/an 3D Model/Point Cloud/Image of a Coral Reef, El Bordo and soon to be published A Fictionalized Memoir of Kathy Acker. She is the translator of Felizmente by Lyn Hejinian and Cosas de cada posible relación chocando unas con otras by Juliana Spahr. She recently edited the anthology First, Second and Third Year Students’ Work/MFA in Creative Writing/Literature Department/University of California, San Diego/2018.


  • Calvin Walds

    Calvin Walds

    BA, Political Science and Ethnic Studies, Albion College
    MA, Pan-African Studies, Syracuse University
    MS, General and Special Education, Touro College

    Writing and research interests: Twentieth Century African Diaspora Literature; Black Travel Writing; James Baldwin studies; Geography; Fugitivity and Marronage; Race and Continental Philosophy.

    Calvin Walds is a writer from Detroit. His thinking and writing often concern fugitive blackness, the possibilities of sound, and the afterlives of the archive. His writing has been published in Callaloo Journal, The Felt, and Coldnoon: Travel Poetics.

    Selected publications: https://hyperallergic.com/394732/one-poem-by-calvin-walds/

MFA Program Director
Anna Joy Springer

MFA Graduate Coordinator
Tania Mayer
(858) 534-8849

Mailing Address
UC San Diego
Literature Dept / MFA Program
9500 Gilman Drive #0410
La Jolla, CA 92093-0410