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Current Students

Class of 2024

Akosua-Asamoabea Ampofo is a writer whose journey spans from her birthplace in Nashville, US, to her formative years in Accra, Ghana. After earning her BA in Film from Bryn Mawr College, Akosua‘s passion for narrative depth and character-driven stories propelled her to pursue an MFA at Northwestern University in Writing for the Screen & Stage.

Akosua crafts stories about defiant and driven African women who challenge various systems—be it familial, societal, or political. Oh, and there’s always a sprinkle of death!


Makeda Declet is a Guyanese-American writer, actor, and novice puppeteer originally from Brooklyn, NY. She holds a BFA from New York University, Tisch School of the Arts. Makeda loves telling dark-comedic stories about Black family dynamics, self-discovery, and addiction through the lens of Black, Queer protagonists. She has developed work at EST/LA, MeetCute LA, Echo Theater Company, Moving Arts, and Mara Brock Akil’s Story 27 Writer’s Colony. Makeda currently serves on the members council of EST/LA where she co-created the Ignite Project, a play development space for emerging playwrights.


Joslyn Housley is an American playwright, librettist, editor, and mom who has called Chicago, London, New York, and northern France her home. Joslyn writes about journeys—physical, spiritual, emotional—and the people who take them. She is the author of the award-winning historical drama, The Silver Thread and the story writer for the 2021 film Hal King, an r&b opera based on Shakespeare’s Henry 4 parts 1 & 2. She also teaches historical fiction writing for the publishing house, midnight & indigo. She is currently working on a musical. Joslyn’s work has been recognized by: the Women Playwrights International Conference/Montreal; Landing Theatre’s New American Voices; the Bay Area Playwrights Festival; the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center’s National Playwrights Conference; the Great Plains Theatre Conference; and the Hudson Valley Writer’s Center.

Kate McMorran is a playwright-turned-screenwriter currently pursuing her MFA in Writing for Screen and Stage at Northwestern University. Her play CHOPSTICK won the judges choice award at the Playbill Virtual Theatre Festival, and several of her short plays have been produced in NYC. Her work has been published by Smith & Kraus and various lit mags, and she is a member of the Dramatists Guild. Kate writes toxic rom-coms about women searching for pleasure. She also loves to obsessively stare at her houseplants and can usually be found reading at least three books at once.

Class of 2025

Aisha Hamid is a poet and writer from Lahore, Pakistan. She was shortlisted by the Zeenat Haroon Rashid Writing Prize for Women, 2019, and received an honorable mention by The Berlin Writing Prize 2019. She is a Poetry Reader at The Adroit Journal, a fellow at Qalambaaz 2023, Pakistan’s first screenwriting lab, and an alum of the South Asian Write Beyond Borders mentorship program, 2021, and the LUMS Young Writers’ Workshop ’19. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Vallum Magazine, The Aleph Review, Yoda Press, and elsewhere. Her writing centers around South Asian women’s lived experiences, their agency and the multiple meanings it holds for them, as well as mental illness, generational trauma, and sisterhood.


Frank Garland is a playwright and performer, originally from Seattle.

He graduated in 2020 with a BA in English and a minor in Theater from Harvard University. He loves improv comedy and roleplaying games and all things playing pretend. His plays have been staged and workshopped in Seattle, Los Angeles, New York, and Chicago, and often explore themes of escapism and performativity and the ways the people we pretend to be reveal things about the people we are. He spends his free time reading fantasy novels and listening to old union songs.



Elliot Schiff is a playwright and comedian from Los Angeles, California. Based in Chicago, Elliot has two pet rabbits.






Tiana Williams is a writer, filmmaker, and performer from Kansas City, Missouri. She earned a BFA in filmmaking from Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri in 2018. Since graduating, Tiana has found herself dipping into different industries from education to business administration trying to find where she fits. Ultimately, nothing compared to her love for writing and she was compelled to answer the call to create. Tiana has always found a sense of security on the page. Writing helps her understand herself and the world better. In her work, Tiana aims to stir empathy with complex characters that remind us we are more alike than different, and therefore encourage social change. She believes art is a great instrument to not only provoke us to do better, but also to invite us to find joy and spread it. When Tiana isn’t musing over the perfect word pairing, she can be found somewhere cackling at her own jokes…then writing it down – lol.