By: Sarah Tinker Perrault, WIC Director
Spring is an exciting time in the academic year, and in WIC. In particular, for us it is workshop season, a time to celebrate student writing through the Culture of Writing Awards, and a time for me as WIC Director to thank everyone who helps create and sustain a culture of writing excellence at Oregon State University.
On the workshop front, we had five WIC events this quarter on topics ranging from how to help students read disciplinary texts, to understanding and supporting transfer students in and beyond WIC classes. In a new type of event, we also had consultants from the Undergrad Research & Writing Studio offer their perspectives, tips, and advice on assignment design. Also from the Academic Success Center and Undergrad Research & Writing Studio, we had advice about how to support multilingual student writers. Our final event of the spring squeaked in under the wire in Week 11 and gave faculty an opportunity to reflect on what has been working in their teaching and make plans for how to change their teaching this summer or next year. For overviews of these events, and for access to handouts from events that had them, please see the Spring Event Series Recap.
In our celebration of student writing, we have given 28 Culture of Writing Awards. Winning papers, selected by faculty in the majors, represent what experts in each field define as quality writing for that field. The excellence of these papers reflects not only the students’ hard work, but also the work of the faculty who teach them disciplinary writing, and who choose from among their student writers and share those pieces that most showcase the values of writing in their disciplines. For a list of student winners and their papers, please see the 2022 Culture of Writing Award Winners.
WIC has a lot of moving parts, and I want to finish this column and this academic year by thanking everyone involved in creating those parts and keeping them in motion.
First and foremost, thank you to faculty. The backbone of WIC is those who teach, both the hundreds of WIC faculty and the faculty who integrate writing into all of their classes. Your teaching creates the culture of excellence in writing at OSU.
Thank you also to Caryn Stoess, the WIC Operations Manager, who continues to help keep WIC running and continues to make it fun for me to be the WIC Director.
I am grateful to this year’s WIC Graduate Assistants, Jess Al-Faqih (September to February) and Olivia Rowland (intern until February and then GTA), for indispensable work on seminar, events, course proposals, web materials, the newsletter, and more. Jess is completing her MA in Rhetoric & Writing this year, and Olivia will return as the WIC Graduate Assistant next year.
WIC has benefited this year from our first Visiting WIC Affiliate, Hannah Whitley. After graduating from OSU with a triple major in Anthropology, Religious Studies, and Sociology, Hannah went on to do graduate work in Rural Sociology and in Human Dimensions of Natural Resources & the Environment at Penn State. Hannah is back in Oregon to do research as a visiting scholar, and we had the good fortune to have her on the WIC team this year. Hannah helped out in the fall seminar, contributed insights and ideas during team meetings, offered her survey design skills, and was generally just fun to work with.
Undergraduate Assistant Faye Stone has been working on digitizing the treasure trove of files in the WIC office, an effort that is helpful not only to WIC but also to future scholars who will benefit from having access to information about one of the longest running and strongest programs in the country. WIC has been lucky to have Faye’s help, as well as their participation in team meetings, and we are glad they will be returning next year.
Last, but never least, members of the WIC Advisory Board continue to provide indispensable guidance, and I thank them for their dedication to WIC, individually and as a group.