Toby Emert, Ph.D.

Institute Director Toby Emert, Ph.D., is Professor of English Education and Theatre in ASC’s Department of Theatre & Dance. He has led teacher trainings in digital humanities and digital storytelling (DST) for more than 200 teachers, with foundation and federal grant support. Before moving to the college setting, he taught English, drama, and public speaking in middle and high schools. He recently directed an 18-month project, “Delving into the Digital Humanities with Secondary Teachers,” funded by the U.S. Department of Education.

Charlotte Artese, Ph.D.

Professor of English Charlotte Artese, Ph.D., teaches in the Department of English at ASC where she recently served as department chair. She is the author of Shakespeare’s Folktale Sources and editor of Shakespeare and the Folktale: An Anthology of Stories. Dr. Artese has given public lectures on Shakespeare’s use of folktales and led a workshop for college instructors on using folktales to teach The Taming of the Shrew.

Robin Morris, Ph.D.

Robin Morris, Ph.D., is Associate Professor of History in the Department of History at ASC where she teaches courses in Modern US History, Public History, and Southern History. Prior to teaching at the college level, she worked as a museum educator at the Levine Museum of the New South in Charlotte, North Carolina, and as a middle school social studies teacher in Mississippi. She teaches history using digital tools and has taught workshops on oral history and digital curating. Her book Goldwater Girls to Reagan Women: Gender, Georgia, and the Growth of the New Right (UGA Press) will be out in 2022. An example of her students’ digital history work about the lived experience of the CoVid-19 pandemic is at

Nell Ruby, M.F.A.

Nell Ruby, M.F.A., is Professor and Chair of the Department of Art at ASC and the former director of ASC’s Center for Digital and Visual Literacy. She is also a mixed-media installation artist, integrating manual and digital modes of expression that draw on her expertise in digital illustration tools.

K-12 Professionals

Shelby Coffin, M.A.T.

Shelby Coffin holds an M.A.T. in secondary English education from Agnes Scott College. She co-presented at the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) on “The Laramie Project: Encouraging Reading, Teaching, and Acting for Social Justice Through the History of Matthew Shepard.” She has also presented at several Georgia Council of Teachers of English (GCTE) conferences on topics ranging from “The Play’s the Thing: Drama as a Tool for Close Reading” to “To Kill a Mockingbird and Storytelling with Digital Humanities.” She attended Dr. Emert’s “Delving into the Digital Humanities” workshop in 2017. She currently teaches English at Decatur High School in Decatur, Georgia, and is a member of The Midwives, a national community of artists and mentors.

Ashley DeGracia, Ed.S.

Ashley DeGracia, Ed.S.,  earned her master’s degree in English Education from Agnes Scott College and holds an Ed.S. in Curriculum and Instruction from Florida State University. She has worked with students from middle school through college and with both pre-service and veteran teachers. She is currently a faculty member at Marist School in Atlanta, Georgia, where she teaches AP Language and Communication, Advanced Creative Writing, and British Literature and serves as the head coach for the varsity football cheerleading team.

Jerry Rigdon, M.A.T.

Jerry Rigdon holds an M.A.T. in secondary English education from Agnes Scott College. He has participated in several Agnes Scott professional development programs and has co-presented at the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) and the Georgia Council of Teachers of English (GCTE) conferences. He currently teaches dual enrollment English for Rockdale County Public Schools in Georgia.

Nikki Stevenson, M.A.

Nikki Steverson, M.A., attended NEH Summer Institutes in 2005 (Toni Morrison) and 2010 (Emily Dickinson) and participated in the “Delving into the Digital Humanities” workshop at Agnes Scott College in 2017. She teaches at Duluth High School in Duluth, Georgia.

Rachel Darr, Ed.S.

Rachel Darr earned her B.A. in English and M.A.T. in English education from Agnes Scott College and holds an Ed.S. in Educational  Leadership from Mercer University. She has taught high school for fifteen years in addition to working closely with district curriculum and assessment offices. She currently works for  Gwinnett County Public Schools in Georgia, where she teaches AP Language and Composition and American Literature. She also serves as the department chair for her high school English language arts department.  

Guest Lecturers

Josh Cahn. B.F.A.

Since graduating with his B.F.A. in acting from LIU Post, guest lecturer Josh Cahn‘s work has been seen at major regional theaters, on network television, and in feature films, as well as in countless commercials. Josh is a full-time actor and loves sharing his secrets with his students. He specializes in preparing up and coming voice actors for their first steps into the voiceover world. Josh teaches voiceover at The Growing Studio in New York City and on-camera acting at Green Shirt Studio in Chicago.

Adam King, B.F.A.

Adam King serves as the education programs coordinator for the Atlanta Shakespeare Company, where he teaches students K-12 in camps, residencies, workshops, and more. He is currently directing A Midsummer Night’s Dream for the company. Outside of his work with ASC, he has taught theatre camps for the Alliance Theatre, Lionheart Theatre, Marcus Jewish Community Theatre, coached privately for on-camera and audition practice, and directed the spring musical at Sagamore Hills Elementary School for the past five years.

Kayla Shipp, Ph.D.

Guest lecturer Kayla Shipp, Ph.D., is a digital scholarship specialist at Emory University’s Center for Digital Scholarship, where she designs and builds public-facing digital publications, collaborating with cultural institutions, open access publications, and faculty to build interactive digital objects that tell human stories. She also co-directs Emory’s digital dissertation program, leads workshops on digital project development, and consults on digital projects funded through the Mellon Foundation’s initiative to shape the future of publishing.