Get to know NHCC's Creative Writing instructors.
Professor Brian Baumgart (he/him) is the author of the poetry collection Rules for Loving Right (Sweet, 2017), and his poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction have appeared in a number of journals, including South Dakota Review, Big Muddy, Spillway, Whale Road Review, and Signal Mountain Review, among others, as well as in the anthology Rewilding: Poems for the Environment. His poetry has been nominated for both the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net awards. Brian served as the Director of Creative Writing at North Hennepin Community College from 2012-2022, and was 2018 Artist-in-Residence at University of Minnesota's Cedar Creek Ecological Science Reserve. In addition, he's on the Board of Directors for Northern Starz Center for the Performing Arts. At North Hennepin, he’s been honored with a Faculty of Excellence Award, Phi Theta Kappa Above & Beyond Award, and Diversity & Equity Award (for co-advising the Realities publication). Brian is currently at work on a novel, two poetry manuscripts, a collection of lyric essays, and a play for the stage. For more visit his website.
Courses taught at NHCC:
- College Writing I
- College Writing II
- Writing Stories
- Writing Poetry
- Writing Creative Nonfiction & Memoir
- Magazine Workshop
- Nature and Literature
- Creative Writing Capstone Project
- Humor Writing (Honors Program)
- BS, Winona State University
- MFA, Minnesota State University, Mankato
Haley Lasché has been teaching at North Hennepin Community College since fall 2008. She is the founder, designer and editor of Concision Poetry Journal (concisionpoetry.com). Her poems have appeared in such places as Landlocked Magazine, Clade Song and Nice Cage. She has two poetry chapbooks: Where It Leads (Red Bird Chapbooks, 2016) and Blood and Survivor (Locofo Chaps, 2017). She co-curates the Talking Image Connection ekphrastic reading series with Luke Pingel.
Courses taught at NHCC:
- College Writing I (Engl 0990/1200/1201)
- College Writing II (Engl 1202)
- Introduction to Creative Writing (Engl 1900)
- Introduction to Literary Studies (Engl 2150)
- BS, University Of Wisconsin-River Falls
- MFA, Hamline University
Kelly Lundquist (she/hers) has been teaching at North Hennepin since 2014. Originally from the Mississippi Delta, Kelly taught literature and writing across the United States (Chicago, Boston, Seattle, and California, among other places) before settling in Minnesota. She is a nonfiction writer and is finishing a book-length memoir, Beard. She hopes it will be available in bookstores near you by 2024 (fingers crossed). Her writing has appeared in many places, including Image Journal, Good Letters, Patheos, and The Academy Stories. In 2012, she was awarded a year-long first book fellowship as the Milton Postgraduate Fellow at Seattle Pacific University. In 2005 and 2006, Kelly taught conversational English in Slovakia and was selected for a 2011 Teaching Exchange in Carnoustie, Scotland, and Kigali, Rwanda. While she remains a PhD dropout (because life happens and if you take one of her classes, she’ll probably tell you all about it), she has an MA in English with an emphasis in 17th century British Poetry and an MFA in Creative Nonfiction with an emphasis in fragmented lyric form and tragicomedy. At NHCC, she’s been selected for an Above and Beyond award as well as a Faculty of Excellence Award from TRIO. Kelly has received multiple grants from the Central Minnesota Arts Board and regularly sits on grant panels for them as well as for the Minnesota State Arts Board. In Fall 2022, Kelly will be the new Director of Creative Writing at NHCC. She will also be co-facilitating S.E.E.D. and will be serving as President-Elect for our faculty union. Her recent sabbatical project was focused on decolonizing the teaching of Academic English. When she’s not teaching or writing, Kelly is probably either making food or reading about food or streaming a show about food on her television. It goes without saying that she’s probably also eating food while doing these things, most likely while listening to Broadway showtunes. She lives with her spouse and daughter in Monticello, where she leads weekly Tuesday Night Writers Open Studios at the Monticello Arts Initiative.
- BA, Belhaven College
- MA, Mississippi College
- MFA, Seattle Pacific University
Ana Munro has a Bachelors in French from Kings College London, a Masters in Creative Writing from Bath Spa University and is a graduate of Harvard University Graduate School of Education’s Closing the Achievement Gap Institute. Ana is also currently a student, completing her Doctoral Degree inHigher Educational Leadership at St Cloud State University. Her research focuses on the impact of place-based, immersive educational experiences on students’ academic success and identity. Ana is passionate about collaborating, building community, and creating systemic change in higher education for BIPOC students.
Ana teaches Creative Writing, Nature and Literature, College Writing I and II, Global Literary Perspectives and Global and Cultural Studies 1970 Environmental Justice and Nature Immersion and GCST 1320 Community Organizing at North Hennepin Community College in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota.
Previously, Ana taught Creative Writing at Bath Spa University in England and English as a Second Language in Christchurch, New Zealand and Lyon, France. Ana also worked as an investigative journalist for many years in the United States and the UK. Her book of poetry Above the Dance of Clouds, was published in 2014, and she is the recipient of the Wisconsin News Association Award for Journalism for her series on the theft and return of Strawberry Island to the Lac du Flambeau Nation, the UK’s Orange Prize for Fiction-Short Story, the James R. Carlson Fellowship from Eckerd College for innovation and creativity in fiction, and the 2017 James Farrell Re(Cognition) Award, which honors individuals who have made outstanding contributions towards advancing sustainability efforts in the Upper Midwest.
Ana co-founded North Hennepin’s Sustainability Committee and American Indian Education and Advisory Groups, and coordinates GCST 1970, a new nature-based immersion program in collaboration with YMCA Camp Northern Lights, the Three Rivers Park District, the DNR, and neighboring school districts, designed to bring college and high school students into the wilderness. She co-created GCST 1490, the l Dave Larsen Annual American Indian Civil Rights Immersion Experience, a five day-immersion tour for American Indian high school and college students to learn about their identity, culture and heritage.
Ana has facilitated multiple sustainability, diversity, equity and inclusion trainings, events and workshops, including presenting at AASHE’s (The Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education), AWP’s (Association of Writers and Writing Programs) and ASLE’S (Association for the Study of Literature and Environment) annual conferences, the New Zealand’s Association for Research in Education 2015 and 2018 Emancipation through Education Conferences on Maori Homelands, and the Australian Research in Education Aboriginal Education Conference in Brisbane, Australia in 2019.
Ana loves reading books, looking for frogs, snakes and salamanders with her children in the forest, going for very long walks, traveling to remote places and is happiest outside in the middle of nowhere. Ana is always planning her next adventure - ask her where she is going next!
- BA, University of London Kings College
- MA, Bath Spa University
Kara Olson (she/her) is a poet, educator, and SEED (Seeking Educational Equity & Diversity) facilitator. She is a graduate of Warren Wilson’s MFA Program for Writers, a recipient of a Jerome Foundation-supported residency at the Anderson Center, and a member of the Queer Voices writing circles in collaboration with Hennepin County and Quatrefoil Library. Her poem “Last Night” was selected by Donika Kelly as winner of The Sewanee Review's 2020 Poetry Contest. Recent poems appear in The Hyacinth Review, Water~Stone Review and TAYO Literary Magazine. She lives in Minneapolis.
- BA, University Of Minnesota Twin Cities
- MFA, Warren Wilson College
Lisa Whalen is a writer and English professor whose work has appeared in An Introvert in an Extrovert World (Cambridge Scholars); The Simpsons’ Beloved Springfield (McFarland); Adanna; Writing on the Edge; Introvert, Dear; and several blogs. Her book, Stable Weight: A Memoir of Hunger, Horses, and Hope (Hopewell Publications, 2021), was selected 2022 Reserve Champion at the international Equus Film and Arts Festival. Based on her book's success, she has been a featured guest speaker in graduate creative writing programs and on podcasts devoted to writing, horseback riding, and eating disorder recovery.
Whalen's Ph.D. research focused on narratives and empathy. In her spare time, she is an equestrian and animal welfare advocate.
- ENGL 0990 Gateway Composition
- ENGL 1200 Gateway College Writing
- ENGL 1201 College Writing I
- ENGL 1202 College Writing II
- ENGL 1800 Introduction to Journalism
- ENGL 1900 Introduction to Creative Writing
- ENGL 2010 Writing Creative Nonfiction and Memoir
- ENGL 2150 Introduction to Literary Studies
- ENGL 2330 Hmong American Literature
- BA, College Of Saint Catherine-Minneapolis
- MA, Hamline University
- PHD, Capella University
- BA, Augsburg College
- MA, University Of California-Davis
- PHD, University Of California-Davis
- BA, University Of Minnesota-Morris
- MFA, University Of San Francisco
- BS, University Of Wisconsin-River Falls
- MFA, Hamline University
- MED, Hamline University