By Kerri Rinaldi, Immaculata University—Over the past few semesters, the tutors at the writing center I direct have expressed a desire and a need for more training on supporting multilingual writers. I heard their requests, but at first, I wasn’t sure how much additional training time to devote to this topic. After all, our small campus (2,500 students) has an even smaller population of international students and multilingual writers (just 1-5% of all students). And, my tutors […]
By Molly Ryan, Virginia Tech—I remember my first day of writing center tutoring distinctly: I can see the desk I selected, third from the front by one of the large windows on the outer wall of the second floor of Newman library at Virginia Tech. I remember the brightly colored Crayola markers laid out for tutors, selecting the black marker to write my name on my identifying tag, and then […]
By Rachel Azima, University of Nebraska-Lincoln—So what could an overwhelmingly queer fandom in 2022-23, the aggressively cishet space of a wedding planning message board in the early aughts, and writing centers possibly have in common, besides being spaces/communities where I have been or am an enthusiastic participant? More than you might imagine, it turns out.
By Kuhelika Ghosh—When I work with international undergraduate students at the University of Wisconsin–Madison Writing Center, I often find myself taking a moment or two to acknowledge the specific challenges that the student shares with me. During some of these conversations, I end up briefly sharing my own experiences during my undergraduate degree when I struggled with writing within certain academic genres as a new international student. I still remember the first time I […]
By Robert Zatryb, University of Connecticut—‘I’m so sorry, English is not my first language.’ Have you ever heard this sentence in your tutoring sessions? Have you read it among the information provided by the student writer ahead of the appointment? I certainly did, with a surprising regularity and always in a similar, apologetic wording. To some tutors and administrators, this tone might go unnoticed and be trivialised, but it actually should be very striking. The writers are […]
By Faith Thompson, Salisbury University—After Victor Villanueva’s 2006 catalyzing speech at the International Writing Centers Association Conference, calls for antiracist practices at writing centers have been echoed by many scholars such as Frankie Condon, Laura Greenfield, and Neisha Anne-Green. These calls have offered insight into ways that racism shows up in writing centers, including student work brought to tutors that perpetuate racism and racist ideologies […]
By Nattaporn Luangpipat—The outreach program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Writing Center was established to promote a strong culture of writing across the curriculum by supporting faculty, staff, and students in all disciplines and programs throughout the University. It connects the Writing Center and various campus communities to share our skilled instruction and learn from our partners about their areas of expertise. The Writing Center offers four major kinds of outreach […]
By Maya Osaka, University of North Carolina at Charlotte—”Sorry, can you repeat that?” // My client begins again—this is the second time I’ve asked them to do so during our session, and as their voice begins to fade away I know I’ll likely have to ask them to repeat themself for a third time. It is humiliating. With each moment where I struggle to pull their voice out of the never-ending tsunami of sensory stimuli it’s being washed away in, I can’t help but to think about… the lights, actually. Their dull fluorescence soaks into every bookcase, desk, and notepad. Even the grooves in the fabric covering of the cubicle walls, each detail drenching my brain in a haze of static.
By Mario Ramirez-Arrazola, University of Oklahoma—In writing center work, It is hard to refrain from thinking about the writing center as the client’s endpoint, and yet it is important to recognize the varied movements and progressions that bring writers to us. Before entering the space of the writing center, they have had to travel through a journey of self-contained experiences, which affected them in either grand or negligible ways. When they walk out, perhaps never to be seen again, their stories don’t stop there. […]
By Joseph Franklin, New York City College of Technology—I am writing this at a bamboo table and simple folding chair combo. I am using Microsoft Word on a Mac laptop mounted on a Roost laptop stand and using a Logitech ERGO K860 keyboard that supports my wrists. I am playing instrumental music by Grandbrothers through Sennheiser PXC 550 noise canceling headphones and I have notifications turned off on all devices. These tools (and others) have been curated […]