Featured English Students

Kevin Riel, Ph.D. in English

Photo of Kevin Riel Kevin Riel is a PhD student in English studying twentieth-century American poetry. He earned a BA in English and political science from San Diego State University and an MA in literature and creative writing from Claremont Graduate University.

In 2008 he helped launch CGU’s student newsletter the Pedant and contributes regularly to its general interest magazine the Flame. He also helped establish and is editor-in-chief of the English Department’s Foothill: a journal of poetry, a biannual print and online poetry journal that features the work of emerging poets enrolled in graduate programs across the United States.

He lives in Claremont, surfs Malibu most Mondays, writes progressively less-embarrassing poetry, and works in CGU’s Office of Advancement as assistant director of corporate and foundation relations.

“CGU is an amazing place, especially if you’re motivated. You will rarely hear ‘no’ to a good idea and we have a lot more freedom to choose our path of study than students in traditional graduate programs—who often must jump through a series of curricular and bureaucratic hoops to graduate. I even know students here who worked with faculty to create the classes they wanted to take. I have taken several classes outside my discipline that made me stronger within it.

“And the classes themselves are intimate. I just about always receive more personal attention from faculty then I thought likely—or even initially wanted—but after the tough work is done, I am always grateful for it. Not to mention a much stronger student and (dare I say) scholar.”

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