Heather Lettner-Rust
Professor of English and Director of Civitae

Email lettnerrusthg@longwood.edu
Phone (434) 395-2162
Department English and Modern Languages
Office Grainger G10

Dr. Heather Lettner-Rust serves as Professor of English in the professional writing program of the English & Modern Languages Department. She is also the director for the Civitae Core Curriculum, our general education program. Her areas of research interest include writing pedagogy, faculty development, and civic engagement.


First-Year Composition

Intro to Digital Writing

Technical Writing

Professional Writing

The Rhetoric of Apology

Rhetoric of Civic Engagement: Prince Edward Storytellers' magazine

Visual Rhetoric & Document Design


My interest in civic writing and student public engagement led me to collaborate with Michael Mergen, Associate Professor of Photography, and Lara Smith, Professor of Southern American History in creating five volumes of student-designed and published magazines with stories from citizens affected by the student strike of 1951 for educational equality and the school closings of 1959-1964 in Prince Edward County. Those volumes entitled: 10 Stories, 50 Years Later; Their Voices, Our Stories; All Eyes on Prince Edward County; are in circulation through the R.R. Moton Museum in Farmville, Virginia. 

As a result of that collaboration, we published "Sitting Still in the Right Places: Remembering and Writing Civil Rights History in Prince Edward County, Virginia" in an edited collection Pedagogies of Public Memory: Teaching Writing and Rhetoric at Museums, Archives, and Memorials.

I have also published about various projects: piloting a civic writing course, orchestrating a student/town council dinner, professional writing pedagogy, the process of publishing in composition and rhetoric, as well as teaching and learning in classrooms with video-streaming capabilities. These articles have been published in Explanation Points: Publishing in Rhetoric & Composition; Prompt: A Journal of Academic Writing Assignments; Reflections: A Journal of Public Rhetoric, Civic Writing, and Service Learning; Computers & Composition; Across the Disciplines; and Present Tense: A Journal of Rhetoric in Society

I graduated with a B.A. in English and a B.A. in Classical Civilization from Mary Washington College and completed my Ph.D. in English from Old Dominion University.

In my spare time, I enjoy my family and riding my Dutch Harness Arabian cross gelding, Geoffry. I love watching the sun go down out in the county and reading the Sunday New York Times. I also enjoy water skiing, cows, and unusual signage I photograph during my travels. 

[Fall 2022]