We’re looking for staff!

Staff Openings

We’re looking for this year’s staff to plan, design, edit, market, and publish the 2018 issue of River Currents. Nearly everyone from last year has graduated, which means we are a clean slate and looking for our next creative, artsy, and motivated batch of IVCC students.

If you think that you or someone you know is interested, here’s what to do:

  1. Take a look at our Staff Descriptions that explains what opportunities and responsibilities come with each position.
  2. Attend our informational and “first staff meeting” of the semester: Friday, Sept. 15 at noon, room A-329.

  3. Print this “Staff Opportunity Statement of Interest” handout and return it to our faculty advisor, Tracy Lee in room A-329 by Monday, Sept. 18 at 1:00 p.m.

  4. Be ready to create something awesome as a lasting legacy of IVCC’s talented student body.

Here’s a link to our past River Currents staff, and an electronic archive of past issues.


2017 Student Staff

Editorial Staff

Editor-In-Chief: Allison Hawbaker
Assistant Editor:
Stephanie Bias
Copy Editor: Akari Oya, Madalyn Loiselle, Savanna Weitzel
Designer: Peggy Schneider
Graphic Design Intern: Peggy Schneider

Creative Arts Staff

Fiction Editors: J.Q. Church, Allison Hawbaker, Madalyn Loiselle
Non-fiction Editors: Makenzie Thompson
Poetry Editors:
 J.Q. Church, Makenzie Thompson, Akari Oya, Savanna Weitzel
Visual Art Editors:
Makenzie Thompson, Akari Oya, Mallory Watson

Events and Social Media Staff

Events Coordinator: Stephanie Bias

Staff Descriptions. If you’re interested in being part of the River Currents student organization during the 2017-2018 academic year, please fill out this form and return it to Tracy Lee in room a-329.


Introductions: Allie

My name is Allie.
I am a reader, writer, and musician, as well as an IVCC graduate. I was also the editor-in-chief of River Currents for the 2016-2017 school year.

Now that I’ve graduated with my two-year degree I’m preparing to continue to get a degree in music education with a minor in English. So, as a music major, why am I so interested in English?

I was homeschooled before attending IVCC. I spent every spare moment (when I wasn’t doing school work or playing with my brother) devouring as many books as I could get my hands on. I spent most of my time with classics such as Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, A Little Princess by Francis Hodgson Burnett, and David Copperfield by Charles Dickens. I loved stories so much, I knew that I needed to write my own. I’ve been writing fiction since I was about eleven years old starting with a highly ambitious project where I planned to detail the different battles of the American Revolution. I’ve since drifted away from historical fiction into fantasy but I love both genres and hope to work with both in the future.

I mentioned that I and majoring in music education. I’ve been playing the piano for seventeen years and singing (though without formal training) for twenty-three. I’ve also experimented with violin, flute, and percussion. I’ve already had the joy of teaching piano lessons and I love teaching, thus I’m going for music education.

As I write this post, I am less than a month away from moving to Western Illinois University which is both exciting and terrifying.  Juggling music, writing, and school can be a lot at times, but it’s a challenge that I thoroughly enjoy. I’m looking forward to this new adventure in my life and I can’t wait to see how it shapes both my music and my writing.


“A fondness for reading, properly directed, must be an education in itself.”
Mansfield Park by Jane Austen


Origin Story: Danny

Act I: Maiden Voyage (ages 0-12)

The story starts in a small town in the Illinois Valley (remains there) and begins with a wide-eyed, quite enormous (9 pounds and 10 ounces) baby fascinated by all things human. The first obsession that I can remember having is with firetrucks and fire-fighters. That probably explains why I was a fire-fighter for Halloween for my first few attempts.

Obsession #2: Profound love for baseball (Go Cubs Go) and a strong inclination to play with Lincoln Logs and Tonka Trucks. Admittedly, there was an even stronger inclination to destroy the happiness of my three sisters (two older, one younger), but that’s off the record.

Act II: Teenage Angst (13-19, probably 20 and 21, also)

Fluctuations in voice pitch: Plentiful (Embarrassment included)

Attention to life’s perils/enormity of existence: Life’s what?

Emotional stability: ???

This was a defining period, with a plethora of changing interests and activities that often painted a blurry picture on the shifting canvas as to what life is, or at least what I was told it should be. I donned many hats during this period. I wanted to be a history teacher, a paramedic/firefighter, even did a semester where I thought I was going to be an Anthropologist. In short, I was certain of what I was going to be many different times, so in reality I had no idea what I was going to do.

Act III: Adulting and everything else considered (20.5 and beyond)

This has been the best part of my life. And it is also the reason why this blog from me exists. It started with an innocent Creative Writing class, took out of minimal interest. It’s quite comical that the one class that I had little joy (before the class started, that is) in taking was the one that ignited not an interest, but a deep passion for raw imagination. An imagination that I never knew I had that stemmed from something I had always been decent at, but never gave a second thought; Writing.

To this day, it is still the most important class I have ever been apart of.

This is where my allegiance lies, and it is what I am going to be pursuing at NIU. Well, my major is technically an English major in Writing Studies, with an emphasis in Creative Writing, but it’s all the same. Any type of writing is and should be creative. It should be visceral. It also allows me to wear any hat I want, which is important for a guy who invests in so many different types of hats.

So, readers, what you can expect from me is a shared experience in my travels from an uncertain IVCC student, to an immeasurably excited writing major at NIU. Hopefully we both learn useful things along the way, and quite possibly help an undecided person find what type of hat they want to wear.


Introducing IVCC Voices

River Currents is starting a blog with a specifically eclectic vision in mind: to foster the literary and visual arts within the Illinois Valley and IVCC’s greater surrounding community. That somewhat lofty and noble goal means we want to start them young, grow their talent and interest, support their goals, and (hopefully) keep them around. The “them” in that scenario is you, the IVCC student of present, past, and future.

No matter your gps coordinates, pursuing the arts can be a difficult (and unpopular, there we said it) endevour. And while we know you may not be planning to stay in the Illinois Valley, we want to make it as enriching and inviting as possible for those of you who want to stick around and grow our community.

Here’s a more academic-y way of stating our goals:

  1. inspire our community’s youth
  2. support youth interest in the arts
  3. encourage talent
  4. promote education within the arts
  5. cultivate an arts-minded community

Continue reading