Gathering Stories:
A Digital Storytelling Workshop for Young Women in 11th-12th grades

Next offering in Summer 2023

We are all made of stories in a neon sign

What’s Your Story?

Explore new possibilities for Telling Your Story and Sharing it Digitally in this summer workshop on the RIT campus with other creative, curious, motivated young writer-artist-storytellers.

This unique workshop for young women might be just the space you need to explore, wander, and expand your storytelling horizons! Led by RIT faculty and guest storytellers from the Rochester community. FirstStudent bus transportation is provided from Rochester to the RIT campus in Henrietta, leaving at 8:15 a.m. and returning at 3:30 p.m. each day.


  • Receive a $250 stipend - provided after the successful completion of the workshop - to offset time you might have worked during this week
  • Playfully practice the art of storytelling with talented young women from across the Rochester area 
  • Experiment with new digital and multimedia storytelling methods in RIT computer labs
  • Learn the tricks of the storytelling trade from RIT faculty, local storytelling artists, and creative writers
  • Expand your horizons by telling your story – a creative encounter with writing strategies that you might also use in college and job applications 
  • Build confidence with your 4-person story circle
  • Discover women storytellers and their creative methods of word-play to share their story and make connections.

Apply now

Our Team

Faculty Leaders

Laura Shackelford

Laura Shackelford

Professor, English,

Interests: Narrative theory, Digital literary practices, Literary Media Studies, Feminist Science Studies, Science Fiction, Contemporary Novel, Systems theory and Bioinformatic Sciences.

Karen (Ren) VanMeenen

Karen (Ren) VanMeenen

Senior Lecturer, English

Interests: Cultural Studies, Media Studies, Media Literacy, Visual Literature, Graphic novels, documentary photography, socially aware fine art photography, video installation, Photojournalism and the aesthetics of atrocity

Ammina Kothari

Ammina Kothari

Professor, Director of Harrington School of Communication, University of Rhode Island

Interests: Global communication; health, gender, technology and religion; journalism, media studies, women’s and gender studies, computer-assisted journalism.

Manager, Operations & Producer & Educator at Rochester Community TV

Rashida Burch-Washington

Manager, Operations & Producer & Educator at Rochester Community TV,

Interests: Rashida manages radio station WXIR, but teaching youth is her favorite responsibility at RCTV. While she loves the work she does with the community through RCTV, Rashida’s favorite job is being a wife and mother of two.

Guest Storytellers

Portrait of C Rose Smith

C Rose Smith

School of Photography - Graduate Student

Helen Atawube Yitah

Helen Atawube Yitah

Professor, Dept of English and Dean, School of Languages, University of Ghana, Accra

Interests: African literature, Women's oral and written literature, children's literature

Freelance Writer/Teaching Artist

Christine Green

Freelance Writer/Teaching Artist

Interests: The primary focus of Christine’s freelance work is to highlight the outstanding literary scene in the Rochester area. Other areas of interest include Latinx and Chicanx arts and culture, teen writing classes, and lyrical and speculative creative nonfiction. Outside of work Christine like to garden, watch lots of TV, and nap whenever humanly possible.

Author; Associate Professor, Creative Writing, Virginia Commonwealth University

Sonja Livingston

Author; Associate Professor, Creative Writing, Virginia Commonwealth University,,

Interests: Memoir, Personal Essays, Personal Geographies, Lyric Essays, Brief Nonfiction, Unsung Voices, Writing about Class, Gender, Roots, Race & Religion. Hobbies: nature walks, eating potato-based foods, hanging out with cats.

DeAnn De Leon

Producer / Director at Rochester Community TV

Interests: Filmmaking, Storytelling Editing, Documentary Film, Journalism, Screenwriting

Student Facilitators

Headshot of Anegel Gohel

Angel Gohel