Meet Your English Department #3: Heidi!

Every couple of weeks, an interview with an English department student, faculty member or staff member will be featured on this blog as part of our Meet Your English Department series! Interview topics range from areas of research to favourite restaurants in town which, we hope, will give you a bit of insight into the lives of the people who you see almost every day in the third-floor halls of Clearihue. Enjoy!

Photo of Heidi Rennert holding an owl, profile view.

Name
Heidi Rennert

What is your year of study / What is your role in the UVic English Department?
I’m a second year M.A. student and the Vice President / MA Rep for the EGSS.

What are your main research interests?
Victorian biker gangs! I’m only being slightly facetious. I’m writing my M.A. essay on the intersection between fin-de-siècle aestheticism and Victorian cycling and travel literature (think: bicycle dandies). More broadly, my research focuses on science and technology studies in Victorian visual and literary culture.

What are your hobbies and/ interests outside of academia?
Meticulously reconstructing the life of a 11th century monastic. I also enjoy making things and running a few projects at a time. To paraphrase Emerson, self-reliance is the purest high.

What is your favourite coffee shop in Victoria?
I live really close to Fig Mediterranean Deli on Cedar Hill X and Shelbourne. Occasionally, I’ll walk down the aisles and fantasize about buying one of their industrial-sized cans of pickles. But their Turkish coffee and olive bread are the real treats.

What is your favourite thing about the UVic English Department?
The smaller department size really lends itself to a close-knit and supportive community. It’s given me the opportunity to take risks and gain confidence in myself as a scholar, which I appreciate tremendously. Also, sometimes there are fresh cookies in the grad lounge!

What are you watching on Netflix right now?
Ugly Delicious! I recommend it to anyone who’s interested in fusion foods, immigration, and challenging the notion of an “authentic” pizza.

(Trick question) Are you a dog or a cat person? Justify your answer?
I’m a dog person solely for the fact that I one day want to roam the peat bogs of England with a pack of Scottish deerhounds by my side.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Sometime around age seven or eight, I was very determined to be a park ranger with a motorcycle. I moved on after I learned the motorcycle wasn’t guaranteed.

 

Advertisements

Meet Your English Department #2: Janice!

Every couple of weeks, an interview with an English department student, faculty member or staff member will be featured on this blog as part of our Meet Your English Department series! Interview topics range from areas of research to favourite restaurants in town which, we hope, will give you a bit of insight into the lives of the people who you see almost every day in the third-floor halls of Clearihue. Enjoy!

JaniceNiemann

Name
Janice Niemann

What is your year of study / What is your role in the UVic English Department?
I am a second-year PhD student as well as the EGSS President and the TAPM.

What are your main research interests?
I work on shrubberies and garden spaces in Victorian novels, but I also love basically all children’s literature.

Where did you do your previous degree(s)?
I did both my BA and my MA at Queen’s.

What is your favourite thing about the UVic English Department?
I love that our department is small enough to give me the chance to know most of the people in it. I am also lucky enough to have an amazing supervisor and committee, so being surrounded by wonderfully smart and supportive people is a bonus too.

What are you reading right now for fun?
Hahahahahahaha… I reread Harry Potter over winter break, does that count?

What are you watching on Netflix right now?
I am watching Grey’s Anatomy with my roommate, Skins, Parks and Rec, and also rewatching my favourite episodes of Buffy.

(Trick question) Are you a dog or a cat person? Justify your answer?
Cat person because I have superior taste.

What is your favourite place in Victoria? On the island?
My favourite place on the island is probably Parksville, specifically the beach at Rathtrevor campground. I spent my summers there as a kid and when the tide is out, you can walk out on the beach for what feels like kilometres. (ocean + nostalgia = happiness)

What would your dream graduate course look like?
I don’t know about course to take, but I have always dreamed about teaching a course on adaptations of Pride and Prejudice. I think the world needs to spend some time looking critically at both the Lizzie Bennett Diaries and Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. Plus, what could be better than watching Bridget Jones for class?

Have you gone on any fun trips recently? / Are you planning any fun trips right now? Tell us about them.
I haven’t been on any fun trips recently, but I did work at a castle in England (Herstmonceux Castle) for the year before I came to UVic, which gave me many opportunities to travel in and around Europe. Some highlights include London (obviously), visiting my dad’s extended family in Hamburg, spending Christmas in Moscow, traveling from Marrakech out into the desert to sleep under the stars, going on the fastest waterslide of my life in Budapest, seeing a World Junior’s game in Helsinki, watching The Nutcracker in St. Petersburg, and walking on top of the wall around Dubrovnik.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be a teacher and an artist, the latter being a dream based in no way, shape, or form on my talents or abilities.

Meet Your English Department #1: Dailyn!

Every couple of weeks, an interview with an English department student, faculty member or staff member will be featured on this blog as part of our Meet Your English Department series! Interview topics range from areas of research to favourite restaurants in town which, we hope, will give you a bit of insight into the lives of the people who you see almost every day in the third-floor halls of Clearihue. Enjoy!

FB_IMG_1519065761110 - Dailyn Ramirez

Q: What is your role in the UVic English Department?
A: Graduate Secretary

Q: Where did you do your previous degree(s)?
A: Psychology BA at Uvic

Q: What are your hobbies and interests outside of academia?
A: My couch, Netflix, and colouring are the most common activities. Reading something fluffy, preferably scifi/fantasy. Because I live in Victoria I spend most of my money eating out and come spring/ summer, do my fair share of hiking.

Q: What is your favourite coffee shop to study in?
A: Moka House was a favourite of mine- can’t say I like the coffee but it has good seats and a good vibe. QV’s was great back when they closed at 2am, now it has regular hours.

Q: What is your favourite place to eat in Victoria?
A: Too many places! Come talk to me in person if you want to discuss food.

Q: What is your favourite thing about the UVic English Department?
A: Super cheesy answer, but it’s true: the people! The staff and faculty have always been welcoming and the students make even the dreariest of days better.

Q: What are you reading right now for fun?
A: I’m trying to read Gravity’s Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon- turns out not one to read for 20 minutes at a time on the bus.

Q: What are you watching on Netflix right now?
A: End of the #%&# World

Q: (Trick Question) Are you a cat or a dog person? Justify your choice.
A: Goat Person- but with the housing market, I’ll probably have a cat first, then a dog…maybe one day a goat.

Q: What is your favourite place on campus?
A: Probably the SUB- has the best coffee (Munchie Bar) and pretty much everything you need on campus.

Q: Where is your go-to study location on campus? Any secret spots you care to share?
A: I used to go to the basement of the library quite a bit. Clearihue classrooms are also often left unlocked.

Q: What is your favourite place in Victoria? On the island?
A: Dallas road! My free time in the summer is spent on the beach watching dogs frolicking. Ucluelet has a forever soft spot in my heart.

Q: Have you gone on any fun trips recently? / Are you planning any fun trips right now? Tell us about them.
A:  I was just in Vegas for a sister trip and I’m going to Japan at the end of May with my partner. Japan is kind of a dream come true; we’ll be going to Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, and Hiroshima over the course of two weeks.

Q: When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A: Veterinarian- all animals were mine (regardless of what type) and I loved them all. I did not enjoy science, however, or ten years of schooling.