Baylor’s Postdoctoral Scholars program provides resources and guidance for postdocs and mentors across the university. At Baylor, postdocs enjoy access to the latest research equipment and high-quality mentorship within a caring, welcoming community. Meet our new cohort of post-docs for the coming year!

Becca Cassady, Honors College and Rhetoric/Composition Studies

Becca completed her Ph.D. in English at Baylor in August 2021. Her research focuses on rhetoric and composition, specifically on how learning transfer plays out in university writing center contexts. In her current role, she teaches various courses for the Honors College: Medieval Intellectual Traditions (Great Texts), World of Rhetoric (Baylor Interdisciplinary Core), and Advanced Readings and Research (Honors Program). She enjoys mentoring students outside of the classroom as well. When not on campus, you can almost always find her at a local coffee shop or enjoying the outdoors in Cameron Park.

Luke Mitchell, English and First-Year Writing

Luke Mitchell earned his PhD in English from Baylor in 2021. His primary research area is in 20th Century British, Irish, and Trans-Atlantic Literature. His dissertation focused on the work of three poets – Natasha Trethewey (Mississippi), Seamus Heaney (Northern Ireland/Ireland), and Derek Walcott (St. Lucia). While Luke enjoys research and writing, his favorite part of academic work is definitely the classroom, so he’s grateful to have this post-doc specifically as a teaching fellowship. Luke will be teaching one senior level course on the 20th century British and Irish novel, two sophomore level British and Irish literature surveys, and one freshman level writing/research course. He is excited to keep busy and enjoy this new season.

Nicholas Norman-Krause, Religion

Nicholas Norman-Krause earned a Ph.D. in Religion from Baylor in 2021. His dissertation, Political Theology and the Conflicts of Democracy, explored the relationship between Christian theology and democratic political theory and developed a theological account of conflict, disagreement, and moral pluralism in contemporary democratic politics. Nicholas’ research is primarily in moral theology, social ethics, and religion and politics. He has published in the Anglican Theological ReviewJournal of Moral Theology, and International Journal of Christianity and Education, and is a contributor to The T&T Clark Handbook of Political Theology. He loves introducing undergraduate students to the richness of Christian scripture, history, and theology, and is excited to continue teaching and working with students as a Postdoctoral Teaching Fellow.

Olatunde Patrick Olademehin, Chemistry and Biochemistry

Olatunde Patrick Olademehin is the current Postdoctoral Teaching Fellow in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Baylor University. He graduated college in 2008 from the University of Jos in Nigeria and received his master’s degree from the same university. He worked as a Lecturer at the University of Jos for three years before coming to the U.S. for his Ph.D. Olatunde, who prefers to go by Patrick, says he is “looking forward to igniting the spark of learning and the love of Chemistry in my students, as well as being a mentor they can rely on in my current post-doc year.”

Ben Rawlins, English and First-Year Writing

Ben Rawlins received his PhD in English from Baylor University in August 2021 and will be teaching freshman writing and American literature this year. His research focuses on encounters between humans and the material world in the poetry of Marianne Moore, Elizabeth Bishop, and H.D. As a teacher, Ben works to center curiosity and conversation in the classroom, attempting to create learning communities that construct knowledge together. This year, he is most looking forward to working with students—having conversations about great literature and supporting students as they go on a process of discovery through their writing.

Keighley Reisenauer, Biology

Keighley Reisenauer is a recent PhD graduate from the Biology department, who will be teaching in the introductory biology sequence and an upper-level topics course focused on science communication. Her dissertation work studied how a fungus-derived small molecule called Ophiobolin A differentially targets aggressive and chemo-resistant cancer stem cells within breast cancer. Throughout her time as a graduate student, Keighley was heavily involved in science communication and outreach initiatives, such as co-founding Present Your PhD and a 2020 fellowship with the National Center for Science Education. Now, she blends her passion for that work with her experience as an instructor to inspire up-and-coming scientists and help them develop transferrable skills. As a Postdoctoral Teaching Fellow, Keighley is most excited about developing her skills in large-class lecture formats and developing her science communication course into an enduring inter-departmental collaborative.

Holly Spofford, English and First-Year Writing

Holly Spofford graduated with her PhD in English from Baylor in August 2021. Her research focuses on nineteenth-century British poetry, and her dissertation examined the ways in which three Victorian poets imagined the eschaton and how—in light of this—they negotiated suffering and living in solidarity with other creatures (both human and nonhuman). Originally from Northern Virginia, she attended Grove City College before moving to Waco in 2015. She has developed a deep love for the Baylor and Waco communities, and is grateful for the opportunity to continue living, teaching, and learning in Waco this next year. She’s especially excited to bring archive materials into the classroom this fall through a partnership with the Armstrong Browning Library.

Jeff Strietzel, Educational Leadership

Dr. Jeff Strietzel has served in higher education for over a decade. Jeff earned a B.A. degree in religious studies at Moody Bible Institute, an M.A. degree in college student development at Taylor University, and a Ph.D. in higher education leadership at Baylor University. His professional experience includes teaching and administrative roles at six institutions across three states. He has taught courses in leadership theory and leadership development, college student success, and the culture and organization of higher education. Jeff has been awarded numerous fellowships, grants, and awards for his service and scholarship over the years. His current research agenda focuses on how higher education leaders experience and navigate job loss and career derailment. Dr. Strietzel regularly presents scholarship and promising practices at conferences, and he is published in prominent journals in his field. His work recently provided him opportunity to partner with colleagues within the largest professional organization in his field. In addition to teaching and research, Jeff has remained active in institutional service roles and several higher education and student affairs professional organizations. Jeff is married to his college sweetheart, Julie. They are raising five school-aged children together in Waco, Texas. Dr. Strietzel is looking forward to what this year holds, saying, “I am thrilled to both join an institution and department whose faculty have greatly influenced my thinking and development as a scholar and to teach a topic that has intrigued me since I was a youth. I am grateful to the leaders of the Graduate School and the department of Educational Leadership for this opportunity, and I look forward to all the teaching and learning I will do with students this year as a Postdoctoral Teaching Fellow.”