the holy grail: the story of how I got a Red Bull in glass bottle form (yes, they exist)
June 14, 2016
I Think I Gave Myself a Mullet: A Cautionary Tale
July 1, 2016
SNWP Day Ten: Elevator Speeches & Reflection #2
June 24, 2016
For our morning writing activity we wrote elevator speeches. Here's mine:
My name is Myra Infante Sheridan and I am a doctoral student in literacy education at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. A pivotal moment in my education was reading a young adult novel by a Mexican American author. Engaging academically with a text that reflected my culture empowered me to become a writer and educator of young adult literature. In my classroom, I invite high school and college students to engage with mirror, window, and door texts which reflect, give a glimpse, and invite them to participate in different cultures. I believe that the reading and writing of young adult literature is a vehicle that can promote cultural understanding and cultivate empathetic young adults.
Loteria and the SNWP Summer Institute+: Risk Rewards in Academia
I’m following my husband who’s driving a twenty foot U-Haul. I’m in our little apple green Mazda 2 because we decided to leave the Ford Explorer behind, and I get stuck behind the wrong car shortly after my husband changes lanes. I’m a little bug in a sea of diesel and tires and honks. One of San Antonio’s spaghetti junctions is not being kind to me.
I look to the right and see my husband exiting onto a different ramp—one to which I can’t get.
I hear my husband’s voice buzz through the handheld radio.
“Where are you?”
“I don’t know,” I whimper. “The GPS isn’t working.”
“Just take the next exit, park and restart your phone. You can do this.”
I wasn’t always a North, but at some point in my life I realized that I want to experience all life had to offer. And, this meant saying yes to opportunities that came my way. So, that’s why we found ourselves on the road towards Las Vegas. This traffic fiasco proved to be one of the many challenges I’ve experienced in the last year since beginning the doctoral program in literacy education at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Several times during the academic year I have felt lost. I didn’t know how to speak the academic language those around me spoke. I didn’t know what path I should take as far as my research is concerned. I missed the familiarity of my hometown, my home university, and my home students.
But, little did I know what was waiting for me just around the corner. I heard about the Southern Nevada Writing Project during the fall semester when Dr. McKinney invited me to participate. Although it sounded interesting, I pushed it to the back of my mind, rationalizing that I needed to concentrate on my required courses. When it came time to enrolling in summer courses, I went back and forth between the different options I had, and finally, as a North, I decided to jump into the Summer Institute.
Being part of the SNWP Summer Institute + has been like coming home, like no longer feeling lost, like having that darn GPS app finally kick in.
My former mentor, Bill, had warned me that I would have a learning curve coming into the PhD program because my master degree was not in literacy education but rather in creative writing. He also encouraged me to find a way to include my creative writing in my academic work. He said that having a PhD in English Education and being a YA author would mean I’d be a rock star at conferences.
And, Bill was right about one thing (so far). I have been on a gargantuan learning curve, and I left my creative writing by the way side. And, although my brain has been buzzing with new learning during the past year, I felt as if I was missing something.
In the last two weeks, the Summer Institute has shown me how I can live in both the creative and academic worlds. Furthermore, it has allowed me to share parts of my culture, which is a theme throughout my creative writing, with peers outside of my culture group. This in itself has been a rewarding experience.
For this reason, when it was my turn to write a Scribe Report for the Summer Institute, I chose to create a Loteria game with the different elements of the Summer Institute. And, this game not only represents my culture and all I love about the Summer Institute, but also, as a game of chance, symbolizes the risk involved in moving twelve hundred miles to pursue a PhD in literacy education.
The Summer Institute has shown me that there is a place for all of the parts of me—creative, cultural—within my academic work.
 During our first day of the Southern Nevada Writing Summer Institute Plus, I self-identified as North who is a person that jumps into things without thinking them through fully.
 See my paper titled “The ZPD of a PhD Chicana Student”, which includes some of the things I worked through as a first year doctoral student.