As a first-generation student, Alexander Lowe McAdams didn’t have much of a plan when she arrived at the University of Mississippi as a college freshman. She sampled coursework in art, religious studies, gender and sexuality studies, classics, and journalism before finally finding a home in the Department of English. Her avid interest in early modern literature led her to pursue a master’s degree in English literature from the University of Massachusetts Boston and eventually a doctoral degree from Rice University, a nationally ranked institution located in Houston, Texas.
At Rice, Alexander has had the distinct privilege to work closely with tenured faculty to pursue her interests in the intersection between early modern literature and science. In 2016, she secured more than $8,000 in funding from the Dean of Humanities, the Humanities Research Center, and the Department of English to attend the City University of New York’s Summer Latin Institute. Her studies in classical and neo-Latin will aid her original research bringing together Epicurean philosophy, corpuscular theories of matter, and early modern natural philosophy. She spent her 2017 summer continuing to study Latin through the Paideia Institute’s Living Latin in Rome program, which has aided in her research toward her participation in the 2017-2018 Rice Seminar, Forgery and the Ancient: Art, Agency, and Authorship—an honor reserved for only two Rice graduate students per year.
Alexander remains committed to providing accessible teaching strategies for university students, especially those who are the first in their families to pursue higher education. While teaching her students rigorous research techniques and writing skills, she incorporates interactive technologies, hands-on in-class activities, and projects geared toward the student’s capacity to think both critically and creatively in the classroom.
Alexander served as an editorial fellow at SEL Studies in English Literature 1500–1900 for 4 years before transitioning to Program Manager of the Civic Humanist Program through Rice’s Public Humanities Initiative. She continues to hone her specialized skills in journalism, communications, and graphic design, some of which are detailed on the employment and portfolio pages.