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Allen Helmstetter, Ph.D.

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Dr. Allen Helmstetter

Phone:  465-1223

Office:   OC3074A

Email:  ahelmstett

I grew up on a dairy farm in central Minnesota, right outside a town with a whopping population of 600. After high school graduation, I moved to the big city to attend a small liberal arts college. There, in the spirit of the sixties, I searched for the answer to the question “Who am I?” and wound up majoring in philosophy. I continued studying philosophy at the University of Minnesota, earning the M.A. degree in 1978. After some years teaching part-time and working as a writer and editor for a nonprofit organization, I returned to graduate school to study English Literature. I attended North Dakota State University for the M.A. degree, and then in 2005 took a doctorate at the University of North Dakota. In my dissertation I applied theories of Lyric to ancient Greek epigrams as a way of exploring poetic language.

As a graduate teaching assistant at the University of North Dakota, I also became interested in the field of Rhetoric and Composition. I began working both in the administration of the university’s Composition program and as a writing consultant in the university’s writing center. This combination of interests in interdisciplinary studies and student writing led me in 2006 to the Department of English at USI, where I now teach humanities and composition courses.

Having lived most of my life on the northern plains, I confess to some difficulty adjusting to Indiana’s summers; on the other hand, I don’t miss the bitterly cold wind chills of a Minnesota winter. In my spare time, I love to read, listen to music, and play with my puppy, Pooh Bear, who recently discovered he can crawl under the back fence and I can't.