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About the FHSS Writing Lab

About the FHSS Writing Lab
Our Advisors
Preparing for a visit

The FHSS Writing Lab is a free writing service that assists students within the BYU College of Family, Home and Social Sciences. Our advisors are friendly undergraduate students from a variety of social science disciplines who have extensive writing experience and are trained in teaching writing. We offer individual, face-to-face sessions where we serve to help students become better writers by focusing on the global aspects of writing, such as thesis construction, organization, transitions, idea development, logical coherence, style, and argument clarity. Students can walk in or schedule an appointment via email or telephone, or by reserving a time online. We welcome writers and their papers at any stage in the writing process.​

The advisors in the FHSS Writing Lab are undergraduate students from a wide variety of disciplines within the College of Family, Home, and Social Sciences. They have been chosen as staff members based on their writing experience and tutoring skills. Each advisor has an individual approach, but all have the same goal: to help students better understand an​d enjoy the writing process.

Our Writing Advisors

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Chris Bahr

Chris is a political science major whose political views will always happen to be the opposite of what you’re arguing for. Put a book in front of him and he will probably read it, be it Machiavelli's The Prince or Sanderson's Stormlight Archive. When reading and writing aren’t occupying his time, he may be found making maps, playing strategic games, or wandering campus with a faraway look in his eyes. He hopes to work as a political analyst studying predictors of success for rebellions and revolutions, and also to prove ultimately that milk chocolate is the best chocolate. In the meantime, writing is a human art he’s happy to spend his time with.
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Brooke Curry

(Orange County, California) Brooke is a psychology major and statistics minor. Her goal is to become a school psychologist so she can help children receive the resources and support they need to overcome the odds and succeed. Brooke loves people and having adventures with her friends and family. This may include (but is not limited to) skydiving, playing soccer, or just finding new board games to play. Also, one of her hobbies is watching behind the scenes or analysis videos on movies and tv shows, as she enjoys the filmmaking, acting, and psychology of the art.
Brooke served her mission in Huancayo, Peru for 8 months before being reassigned to the Boston, Massachusetts mission due to COVID19 where she finished the remainder of her service. She is excited to be back at BYU and keep on loving life.

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Julia Elmer

(Herriman, UT) Julia Elmer is a psychology major. She is pursuing graduate school in hopes of going into either clinical psychology or neuropsychology. Julia is a huge listener and talker, so she loves getting to know new people. She loves music and spends most of her free time listening to a wide variety of music genres, even though One Direction will always be her number one. She also plays the piano, violin, and the guitar. When Julia gets bored, you can often find her trying to find some sort of adventure to go on, typically outdoors. Some things she’s loved trying have been skydiving, backpacking, and apple golfing. Julia is often trying new things with her friends and loves spending time with her family. Her greatest obsession is definitely Christmas and she will tell you how many days until Christmas year round.

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Matthew Grendell

Matthew (Puyallup, Washington) is a psychology major and a Spanish minor. He plans on pursuing a clinical psychology PhD and becoming an adolescent therapist. Matthew also loves storytelling in all its forms, whether it be writing, movies, or games. He enjoys writing his own stories and hopes to one day publish one to share with others. During his free time, Matthew enjoys writing, worldbuilding, or binging shows with his wife. His love for creativity started young with the Percy Jackson books but continues today with creative works like the Marvel Cinematic Universe and Brooklyn Nine-Nine. He also loves food and will often spend his Saturday nights exploring new restaurants with his wife.

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Marinne Hammond

Marinne (Gilbert, AZ) is a senior studying psychology at BYU. After schooling, she plans to pursue a career in mental health counseling. Marinne is a violinist and loves to perform and teach private lessons. In her free time, Marinne enjoys shopping, road trips, and hiking.

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Tristan McAfee

(Springville, UT) Tristan is a psychology major and a global women’s studies minor. She plans to become a licensed clinical mental health counselor (LCMHC) and work with struggling teens and their parents. In addition, she is passionate about suicide prevention and actively works to break the stigma surrounding mental health. In her free time, you can find her FaceTiming her siblings and nephew, posting stories to her Instagram account “Provo’s Worst Dates,” and spending time with her friends.
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Brynn Pyper

(Rexburg, ID) Brynn is a psychology major and has minors in both music and family life. She hopes to someday work as a licensed anxiety and depression counselor and will likely talk your ear off about mental health and personality types if prompted. In her free time, you could find her happily clattering away on her laptop, curled up with a good book, draining threes at the gym, or locked away with a piano and a water bottle in the basement of the HFAC. She dreams of taking her friends and family back to the rich, green land of the midwest where she served her mission to stay up late watching the fireflies come out. She also prides herself on her apple-cracking skills, although she may claim otherwise if the apple is too big, too small, or not ripe enough.
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Gabriel Smith

Gabriel Smith (Kennewick, Washington) is a political science and human development major with minors in global women's studies and sociology. He aspires to pursue a PhD in sociology or family studies, with the goal of becoming a professor. He is particularly interested in research regarding masculinity, fatherhood, LGBTQ+ families, and youth civic engagement. In his free time, you can find him watching sports (primarily hockey and baseball), listening to podcasts, and hanging out with his wife and their two cats.

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Preparing for a Visit to the FHSS Writing Lab


To make the most of your visit to the FHSS Writing Lab, please come prepared with the following:

  • A copy of the assignment.
  • A copy of your draft, either hard copy or on a laptop. We will not work with a phone or a tablet.
  • You are welcome to bring in your writing at any stage in the writing process (e.g. thesis, outline, introduction, incomplete draft).
  • An idea of how we can help you with your paper. This can include appropriateness, focus, organization, development, introduction, conclusion, word choice, tone, or documentation style. Please note that we are neither grammar experts nor an editing service. By focusing on global issues, you can apply principles of writing on other papers and can become a better writer.
  • We are happy to assist all students with global writing issues and assignment-specific requirements. Our advisors cannot provide ESL-specific grammar help or proofreading.