Student Spotlight

Student Spotlight

Kayla BeltrandiKayla Beltrandi

Kayla is a senior double majoring in W&R and Marketing. She is from Enfield, CT and is considering a career in advertising upon graduation this May. Kayla had two internships last summer; she completed a public relations internship with DMV headquarters in Connecticut and was a brand ambassador for Big Fish Promotions. On campus, she works as a supervisor with the Fund for URI and so is very involved in alumni donations to the university. She is also a URI 101 mentor and the president of the American Marketing Association.


Nicole BriefNicole Brief

Nicole double majors in Public Relations and W&R and is minoring in Leadership Studies. She is graduating a year earlier than expected with the help of AP credits from high school. She is from Bellmore, NY on Long Island and wants to be an event planner or publicist after graduation. Nicole completed a public relations internship this past summer with Source Communications in New York City and has also interned for a local politician for the past six years. On campus, she works in the Writing Production Lab as a lab monitor and also manages the W&R website through the Harrington School. She is the Treasurer for URI’s chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America and has served many PR-related positions for her sorority.

Avery BroccoliAvery Broccoli

Avery double majors in Philosophy and W&R. He is from Johnston, Rhode Island, pointing out that it is the same town Mat Franco is from. Avery will graduate in May and hopes to get his Master’s in English or College Student Personnel and eventually get a PhD to become a collegiate professor. He is the vice president of his fraternity, Zeta Beta Tau, and has completed many internships throughout his time at URI. Last year, he wrote proposals for GTECH. Currently, Avery serves as an undergraduate research assistant to Jeremiah Dyehouse, a professor in the Writing & Rhetoric department, and is a general intern for the university’s Center for Career and Experiential Education, where he shadows all the different administrative positions.

Brendan SullivanBrendan Sullivan

Brendan double majors in W&R and Communication Studies. He is from Red Bank, New Jersey, and is graduating in 2016. After graduation, Brendan wants to be move involved in the production and writing that goes on behind the television screen. “I love to write, and I want to write for television shows and ad campaigns,” he said. Brendan has had two internships thus far. He was a sales assistant at The CW28 Television Station in Providence this past summer of 2014. With the station, he helped in selling ad space for the CW television channel. He learned how to effectively sell advertisement spots on a local broadcast television level and loved every minute of working there. “I got the opportunity to know what it is like to work in a fast-paced and always changing environment,” he added about the marketing and sales industry. Brendan’s other internship is the position of marketing intern for The Ryan Center this coming spring of 2015. His duties will include working in a team to promote various events taking place at The Ryan Center, which he hopes will further develop his skills in marketing and event planning. Brendan was also a member of the Men’s Rowing Team his freshman year and is an assistant coach for the East Bay Rowing Club.

Sean SullivanSean Sullivan

Sean majors in Writing & Rhetoric and is minoring in both English and Journalism. He is a junior from Redding, Connecticut. Sean recently began working as a freelance writer for, where he writes sports articles. His work encompasses game previews, season overviews and more, which involve analysis of teams and ticket sales data. He has served as both New Member Educator and Public Relations Chair for Chi Phi. Now, Sean is involved with the Interfraternity Council (IFC), carrying positions of Athletic Liaison and Director of Alumni & Archives. He is also a Civility mentor with the Office of Student Life. After graduation, Sean hopes to become a sports journalist and analyst for major league soccer.


Audrey HigginsAudrey Higgins

Audrey double majors in Classical Civilization and W&R. She is a senior from Gales Ferry, Connecticut. Audrey impressively speaks four languages other than English: Chinese, Russian, Spanish and Latin. After graduation, she hopes to find a career either in translating or publishing. She is currently the Writing Coordinator for Harari, an online secondary education school. Audrey is a creative writing teacher there, but mainly focuses on tutoring students for whom English is not a primarily language. Audrey enjoys writing and publishing books when she’s not busy with her studies. She has two books published on Kindle: “Caught in the After-Wake” and “Dwindle.” The novels fall under the categories of adventure, drama and science fiction. She is currently working on a third novel.

Rachel LanghillRachel Langhill

Rachel double majors in W&R and Sociology and is from West Boylston, Massachusetts. She is a freshman, and has not had any internships yet. In her senior year of high school, Rachel won the DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution) Essay Contest in her region and went on to States. She is a member of the Student Entertainment Committee’s Special Events chapter. Rachel would like to get involved with “The Good 5 Cent Cigar” and complete an internship with a publishing company next year. She is not sure what she would like to do after graduation, but definitely wants a career involving writing.

Haley StampHaley Stamp

Haley is from Saunderstown, Rhode Island, and is double majoring in W&R and Business. She will graduate with the class of 2016. Last year, Haley was the social media intern for the Gina Raimondo Campaign. She created and managed a Twitter account to support the politician, in addition to writing blog posts that were published on the official Gina Raimondo website. Next spring, Haley will complete an internship with the Rhode Island International Film Festival. She is “an aspiring screenwriter [who hopes] to move to California after graduation.”


Alison FisherAlison Fisher

Alison double majors in Biology and W&R. She will graduate in December of 2015 and hopes to find a career involving grant or scientific writing. She is from Pinckney, Michigan, saying that she decided to come to URI to be by the ocean. Alison is currently working with the Department of Environmental Management conducting research writing and assisting them with their website. Next semester, she will complete an independent study with Dr. Caroline Druschke where she will write profiles and produce other materials for the Parks Department.

Jennifer DodgeJennifer Dodge

Jennifer minors in German Language and has recently declared a major in English to accompany her W&R major. She is expecting to graduate in 2016 and wants to travel and work abroad in Germany afterward. In Germany, Jennifer would like to teach English language and earn her Master’s. She is currently involved in an Inter-Institutional Agreement with the Community College of Rhode Island (CCRI) to study German and remain an active member of the German Club, as Jennifer is an Honors Program graduate from CCRI. She has not secured any internships yet, but hopes to in the coming year. Additionally, Jennifer would like to work in the Writing Center next year. She is a member of both the Phi Theta Kappa Honor and Golden Key International Honor Societies. Though she is an older student, she feels it is never too late or unrealistic to “reach your dreams and better yourself through education.” She hopes to serve as a role model not only to younger students, but also to those her age or older. “Throughout my college career, I have gained recognition for my writing on many personal and academic levels. One of my favorite bits of recognition thus far would be from last semester, when I wrote a midterm paper which so impressed my professor she exempt me from the final!”

Viki PanteleakisViki Panteleakis

Viki is a double major in Communication Studies and W&R. She is a sophomore from West Warwick, Rhode Island. In the summer of 2013 after she graduated high school, Viki was a promotions intern for the WBRU radio station. On campus, Viki works in the Writing Production Lab as a lab monitor. She is also a URI tour guide and serves as the vice president for the Hellenic Society, which focuses on Greek language.


Monique “Mo” HowardMonique "Mo" Howard

Monique minors in Marine Affairs and History in addition to her W&R major. She is from Ridgewood, New Jersey but went to boarding school at The Hun School of Princeton. Mo will graduate in 2016. She is currently involved in Habitat for Humanity and is planning to join the university’s newspaper in the spring 2015 semester. Mo wants to work for her alma mater, Hun, after graduation and also plans to write children’s books and execute travel writing pieces. She has completed an internship at an environmental organization, Passaic River Coalition, in Morristown, New Jersey, thus far and hopes to complete an internship abroad this summer.

Adel RoffAdel Roff

Adel double majors in History and W&R and is minoring in English. She is from Westfield, New Jersey, and will graduate this spring. When Adel was a sophomore, she worked in the Writing & Rhetoric Office under the supervision of Donna Hayden, and is looking to come back to the office next semester. Throughout her time here, Adel has submitted works to the Independent Scribe, the university’s literary magazine. After graduation, she is hoping to work in a museum and possibly write for its history department. She particularly enjoys her current assignment in WRT302 (Culture Writing), which involves creating a museum exhibition.

Mary StrawdermanMary Strawderman Pic

Mary majors in W&R. She is currently undecided between Psychology and Business Administration as a minor. She is a part-time student who will finish her coursework in 2016. Mary is from Narragansett, but moved to Wester, Rhode Island, two years ago. She is 52 years old and works on campus as a supervisor in Postal Services. She is a part of the URI program “Finish What You Started.” Mary really hopes to finish what she started by getting her degree. “Although I have no children, I do have 13 nieces and nephews and 26 grand nieces and nephews. I have 6 siblings and, of course, my loving husband,” Mary said. “So my life is very full in addition to my work and my school work.”