About Laura Apol

Laura Apol, Ph.D., is an associate professor of literacy and curriculum in the College of Education, Department of Teacher Education, and is a core faculty member in African and African American Studies, the Center for Gender in Global Contexts, Women in International Development, Peace and Justice Studies, and the Center for Advanced Study of International Development.

Laura was recently named poet-laureate for the Lansing area in May 2019. She is the author of several prize-winning collections of poetry: Falling into Grace; Crossing the Ladder of Sun; Requiem, Rwanda, drawn from her work using writing to facilitate healing among survivors of the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi and translated into Kinywarwanda under the title, Emwe N’imvura Irabyibuka (Even the Rain Remembers; Mudacumura Press, 2015); and, most recently, Nothing but the Blood. She is a two-time winner of the Oklahoma book Award, a silver-medal winner of the Independent Publisher Book Award, a finalist for the Annual Midwest Book Award, and a finalist for the Lascaux poetry prize.

Laura has published more than 50 articles and book chapters in the areas of literacy education, children’s and young adult literature, and arts-based research methodologies. She is currently completing a book about her work in Rwanda entitled Whose Poem is it, Anyway? The Challenge and Responsibility of Researcher as Writer and Witness (Springer, forthcoming).

An award-winning teacher, Laura conducts creative writing workshops internationally, nationally and locally. Her most recent work focuses on the therapeutic uses of writing and literature in response to trauma.

Laura holds a Master’s of Arts in Literary Studies and  a Ph.D. in English Education from The University of Iowa.