This Week's Message
The Reading/Writing Center's first five months in the library (on south end, second floor) have found us making ourselves at home in the new space and with new opportunities. Many have asked how we like our new location; we have quickly appreciated the many advantages here. The biggest advantage is the collaborative work developing between the librarians and us. We have shared conversations, a tutor retreat, and even a trip to another campus to plan ways that we can together assist the campus and each other. A second advantage is the ability to serve more students with evening hours. In addition to our traditional daytime hours (Monday through Friday 10:00 till 4:00), we programmed evening hours 7:00-9:00 Sunday through Thursday. These appointments fill with students who come to the library to work on papers as well as those who have fully scheduled days.
Because we physically occupy a more central location on campus, we hope the community views us now as an academic learning and writing center for the entire college. This winter we have begun conversations with faculty in the sciences as well as with Connie Ghinazzi, library liaison to the science division, about ways we can be more intentionally supportive, especially with writing that students do in science courses. We have established an advisory board with a member from each division so that we can hear about the needs of faculty and students in departments across campus as well as ask for advice for meeting those needs. All in all, the move has been both practical and inspirational.
I encourage faculty who are curious about the Reading/Writing Center or have suggestions for us to contact me (x7372) or assistant director Farah Marklevits (x7316) by phone or e-mail, or even better, to stop by for a visit. You can better help your students find their way here by knowing how we serve them and what the physical place offers. We would also be happy to schedule a coffee break or lunch with you to share ideas or an in-class visit with your classes to explain what they can expect when they stop in.
Finally, I want to acknowledge how deeply we in the RWC appreciate the work and service Bill Coker has given us in his years here. He has instructed and advised hundreds of students about academic skills, mostly struggling students but also those who wanted to become better writers. I know that dozens of students would not have made it through Augustana without Bill's judicious and dedicated intervention. He has been a model teacher and a source of joyous humor to peer and faculty tutors alike; he will be greatly missed. All of us tutors wish him a wonderful term in Vienna this spring and a happy, productive retirement.
Director of the Reading/Writing Center