CRS Team

Dr. Bruce McComiskey, Director

Bruce McComiskey is Professor of Rhetoric and Writing in the English department. He specializes in ancient and modern rhetorics, composition theory and history, and the discipline of English studies, always paying close attention to the intersections among language, epistemology, and ideology.

McComiskey’s books include Rhetoric and the Dead Sea Scrolls (Penn State UP, 2021), Post-Truth Rhetoric and Composition (Utah State UP, 2017), Dialectical Rhetoric (Utah State UP, 2015), Gorgias and the New Sophistic Rhetoric (Southern Illinois UP, 2002), and Teaching Composition as a Social Process (Utah State UP, 2000). He is editor of English Studies Reimagined (NCTE, 2022), Microhistories of Composition (Utah State UP, 2016), and English Studies: An Introduction to the Discipline(s) (NCTE, 2006). He is co-editor (with Cynthia Ryan) of City Comp: Identities, Spaces, Practices (SUNY Press, 2003). Some of McComiskey’s work has been translated into Chinese, Korean, and Polish.

Marissa Buccilli, Graduate Research Assistant

Marissa Buccilli is a first-year Ph.D student in Rhetoric and Writing at Virginia Tech University. After completing her undergraduate studies in Secondary-Education English (7-12) at Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania, she earned her master’s degree in English from the University of North Carolina Wilmington. Following the completion of her MA, Marissa worked as an Academic Advisor at Elon University in North Carolina and then in the College of Arts & Sciences at the University of Tennessee Knoxville. Her interests, broadly speaking, are related to material culture and public humanities, spatial rhetorics, public memory studies and preservation. She aims to include a variety of multidisciplinary frameworks and modes of rhetorical methodologies in her research to address questions as they relate to connection and community with each other and to our evolving world.

Amilia Evans, Graduate Research Assistant

Amilia Evans is a third-year PhD student in Rhetoric & Writing at Virginia Tech (VT). She has over 15 years’ industry experience supporting and managing proposals for government-contractor companies. With expertise in technical and professional communication, she has supported Materials Science and Engineering undergraduate students with developing technical reports and professional materials as a graduate teaching assistant as well as editing manuscripts for Civil Engineering graduate students. Amilia Evans’ research interests are in Technical and Professional Communication, Intercultural Communication, African American Rhetoric, and Pedagogy. She is the Inclusion Advisory Chair for Writing Program Administrator-Graduate Organization (WPA-GO) and a graduate employee of VT’s Reimagining diVersiTy initiative. Her graduate experiences as a student of color, graduate research in diversity rhetorics, affiliations with diversity programs, and her application of diversity concepts in curriculum are culminating factors that are making her a driving force in establishing inclusive pedagogical practices. For more, visit

Past CRS Faculty Directors

Kelly Belanger, James Dubinsky, Bernice Hausman, Derek Mueller, Kelly Pender, Katrina Powell

Past Faculty Research Associates

Carolyn Commer, Rebecca Hester, Marcia Davitt

Past Program Associates

Ren Harmon (VT Stories)

CRS Research Assistant Alumni

Tarryn Abrahams, Iris Farrou, Brian Gogan, Cassandra Hockman, Ke Hu, Heidi Lawrence, Laura Lane, Savannah Paige Murray, Megan O’Neill, Ashley Patriarca, Alexis Priestley, Katherine Randall, Jessie Rogers, Kelly Scarff, Tana Schiewer

Past Faculty Affiliates

Shannon Bell (Sociology), Katie Carmichael (Linguistics), Marc Edwards (Engineering), Rebecca Hester (STS), Steve Parks (UVA, Rhetoric and Writing), Georgeta Pourchot (Public and International Affairs), Samarth Swarup (UVA, Bioinformatics), Quinn Warnick (TLOS)