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Showing posts from December, 2014
Who’s a Writer? “I’m not a writer.” These four words have regularly gone through my head throughout this whole journey as a COMP fellow at Nova Southeastern University. They first made an appearance when I was checking my e-mail one day in the summer. As I scrolled down a list of unread e-mails, one in particular caught my eye. The subject heading was “NSU Writing Fellows.” It described the program and asked if I wanted to become a peer tutor for the upcoming semester. This caught my attention because writing was something I never considered myself good at. I’ve always thought of myself as more of a mathematics person as opposed to writing. Despite thinking this, I replied to the e-mail and decided to take this opportunity to help myself grow as a writer. Walking into our first training session, I was nervous beyond belief. I looked around the room at the various new faces hoping they were just as nervous. Over the course of training, we went over essays and discussed what each of us w…

Salt Lake Teens Write Service Learning Reflection

Note: The following reflection also appears on my SLCC e-portfolio.

I chose the Salt Lake Teens Write (SLTW) program as my Service Learning project for English 1810, Mentoring Writers, Fall Semester 2014. SLTW is co-sponsored by the Salt Lake City Public Library and Salt Lake Community College’s Community Writing Center (CWC) and is modeled after New York City’s Girls Write Now program. SLTW pairs an adult mentor who use writing in everyday life, for personal or professional purposes, with high school junior from an underrepresented group. The mentor-teen pairs work together from September through May, meeting for about an hour each to work together on whatever genre of writing they choose. Mentors are encouraged to write along with their teens, and SLTW publishes an anthology of teen and mentor writing at the culmination of the program. Mentors report online to SLTW after every writing session and group activity, and the program has a Facebook page to help keep participants informed a…

Student Writing Center Service Learning Project

Ever since my first semester at the Salt Lake Community College, I found myself enamored with the Writing Center. I so admired the tutors with all their writing skill and ability--mostly, though, I admired their confidence. I'd go to the Writing Center for help and advice on my writing assignments and end up fantasizing  that some day I would own what I knew about writing and feel that kind of sureness. Little did I know at the time that I would be a Writing Center tutor before leaving college.

The Mentoring Writers course covers so much information, I think my head might explode from all the information. I'm sure this feeling is intensified by my eagerness to be an immediate expert of all the information we're being presented with. I put this course off 'till my last semester, while I built up my confidence. In hindsight, I wonder if I would have benefited from taking it sooner. I never would have guessed I'd learn so much about my own writing proces…

Alex's Application: A Hybrid and Highly Customized Tutoring Experience

In late October I coached a 17-year-old friend, Alex, on writing his essays for the Common Application, an online admissions application used by more than 500 universities and colleges around the nation. Alex wanted to apply Early Decision to Brown University and had a Nov. 1 deadline.

I first met with Alex on Oct. 21. I'm a family friend, so we met at Alex's house, something I wouldn't do if I were mentoring a writer with whom I wasn't personally acquainted. I had recently attended a workshop about college scholarship application essays, hosted by the Salt Lake Teens Write program, so I had good information to share with Alex about what to do vs. what to avoid doing in writing his essays.

We began this first session by reviewing the requirements of the Common App and the 650-word Personal Essay. There were five writing prompts to choose from, and through conversation and questions, I helped Alex quickly eliminate three of the five prompts. More conversation and brain-…