Monica Johnstone, PhD, CAPM®

Title: Director of CLAS Communications and Advancement

Office: B-4-231 MAK

Phone: (616) 331-8125

Fax: (616) 331-3675

Email:  [email protected] 

Monica Johnstone, PhD


  • CLAS website administration and support of CLAS unit web administrators
  • Promotion of CLAS faculty, staff, and student achievements and events
  • GVSU Arts Celebration Steering Committee (project manager)
  • Briefing of unit heads on university communications, marketing, and development
  • Administration of all CLAS social media
  • CLAS alumni relations
  • CLAS liaison to University Development and Institutional Marketing
  • Staffing for CLAS Faculty Council
  • Assist the Dean with CLAS Student Advisory Committee
  • Assist the Dean with CLAS Alumni Board and Emeritus Committee
  • Editor-in-chief of all CLAS publications

                       CLAS Weekly Mailing

                      CLAS Acts TT faculty newsletter 

                      The CLAS Teacher AFF, VIS and ADJ faculty newsletter 

                     CLAS annual report 

  • Tailored distribution of news clips and grant announcements to unit heads and individual faculty
  • Shakespeare Festival Committee
  • Inclusion Advocate, ODK, Vet Net Ally
  • Graduate Faculty, English, approved April 2017, reapproved January 2020, online teaching certification 2020
  • Founder and organizer of the Repair Clinic (for students) and the Regalia Repair Clinic (for CLAS faculty and staff)
  • Tasks as assigned by the Dean
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With a background spanning academe, development, and industry, Monica brings a broad perspective to the college's communications, both internal and external. Her mission is to produce expanded offerings on the website, targeted publications, and improvements to communications with students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends of CLAS.

Monica was the recipient of the Levi Strauss Scholarship, the Charles Mills Gayle Fellowship, a graduate teaching award, and worked for the UC Berkeley Foundation during a major capital campaign.  She is a member of the Prytanean Society, the oldest collegiate women's honorary society in the United States.

After receiving her PhD in Rhetoric from the University of California at Berkeley, Monica taught writing and public speaking at Loyola College in Baltimore and at Assumption University in Bangkok, Thailand. Monica is the author of publications including invited book chapters, refereed articles, travel writing, short fiction, OpEd pieces, annual reports, and book reviews. She has given presentations in six countries.

For 11 years, she worked for a national industry association in Sydney, Australia as speechwriter, editor-in-chief, webmaster, events planner, and systems administrator. She also served for three years on an elected board for a 1,000-member arts guild.

Her textile works frequently appear in a juried and curated exhibitions such as ArtPrize, AQS, and Fiber577 and in collections including the GVSU permanent collection.  Her 80" by 80" work Roman Glass appeared in the August-November 2016 exhibition Circular Abstractions at the Muskegon Museum of Art and then toured venues such as Decorative Arts Center of Ohio, Schweinfurth Memorial Art Center (NY)Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, and Westmoreland Museum of American Art (PA). Another work, Patina: Ancient Amphora was  part of the international touring exhibition A Matter of Time.  In 2016,  Red Shift received the National Association of Certified Quilt Judges Award of Merit.  Her work Edenic took 5th prize in the 2019 West Michigan Art Competition and first prize at Quilts on the Grand.  Edenic appeared in the UICA exhibit "Manufactured Narratives" in 2022.  In 2020-2021, The Vision of St. Joan was exhibited internationally as part of Vision 2020 Textiles. Her work Acid Gothic is included in Cindy Grisdela's book Adventures in Improv Quilts: Master Color, Design & Construction. Her quilt Mars Mission Log received the Judge's Recognition Award at the 2022 Quilts on the Grand and second prize in the 93rd Michigan Contemporary Art Exhibition at the Muskegon Museum of Art.

Monica was the recipient of the 2020 AP Achievement Award, is an approved Graduate Faculty member in English, is a member of Omicron Delta Kappa (ODK), has been a mentor in Fostering Laker Success, is an Inclusion Advocate, has undergone QPR training, was the recipient of the 2016 Service to Community PRIDE Award, the 2015 CLAS Administrative and Professional Service Award, the CLAS Communications Cordon, and the GVSU 2010 Administrative Professional Commitment to Diversity Award.  At GVSU, she  has taught ENG 340 Studies in Drama, WRT 350 Business Communication, COM 202 Critical Interpretation, and  COM 201 Speech.  She served as the chair of the AP Committee in 2015-2016 and as the chair of the UAS Task Force on Accessibility in 2017.  She is the founder and organizer of the Repair Clinic.

In 2019, Monica completed the Oxford Berkeley Programme in The Eighteenth and Nineteenth-Century Gothic Novel: Prohibition and Transgression held at Worcester College and Merton College, Oxford University.  In 2022 she completed the Oxford Berkeley Programme in Murder Most British.

In 2021, Monica became a Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM®) and a member of the Project Management Institute.


Selected Presentations

"Repair Clinic" at Sustainability Spotlight October 3, 2022

"Narratology in True Crime and Detective Fiction" at Merton College, Oxford, July 26, 2022

"In Praise of Betty Schaner" AP Achievement Award Ceremony, April 19, 2022

"The Gothic Novel Through a Figurative Lens" at Merton College, Oxford, July 23, 2019

"Presentation in Honor of Marcia Haas" at the Women's Commission Celebration of Women Awards, March 27, 2019

"Leading a Double Life" at the Allendale Quilters Guild, March 27, 2018

"Leaving Confrontation Behind—Lobbying Skills for an Inclusive Future", Leadership Summit 2018

"Tribute to Lynn Nakada", University of California at Berkeley, January 2018

"Introduction of Fred Antczak", Intro to keynote at National Association of Communication Centers, April 21, 2017

"Quilters Under Cover", behind the scenes look at Circular Abstraction Exhibition, Muskegon Museum of Art, September 22, 2016

"In Praise of a Glorious and Impossible Job", farewell reception of Mary Schutten, May 2015

"Musings on Leadership in the University", keynote at the AP Luncheon, April 16, 2015

"Seeking the Next Level", Metro Detroit Quilt Guild 2014

"Journey to the Year of Quilting Dangerously", Macomb County Quilt Guild April  2014

"How Do We Really Come to Change Our Public Mind? Some Surprising Case Studies in Persuasion", Leadership Summit 2012

Page last modified October 31, 2022