Writing Center members to present at regional writing center conference in Dayton, Ohio


Nicole Morsfield

Writing Center consultants Ashley Cerku, Red Douglas and Emma Shriner will be presenting at this year’s East Central Writing Centers Association.

Bridget Janis, Features Editor

Members of the Oakland University Writing Center (OUWC) will be attending and presenting at the East Central Writing Centers Association (ECWCA) conference on April 4-6 at the University of Dayton in Ohio.

The main goal of ECWCA is to promote communication, scholarship, research and effective practices throughout different writing centers. Colleagues come and present on research related to their writing centers and share findings among other writing centers.

The conference expands to nine different states, and this year the theme is soaring to new heights. Along with other writing centers from the Midwest, OUWC Operations Coordinator Ashley Cerku, Graduate Consultant Red Douglas and Consultant Emma Shriner submitted a proposal and were accepted to present.

“It’s a plethora of knowledge that we can gain in order to bring back to our writing center and either adapt new things or modify some of the things we have in place,” Cerku said.

The OUWC will be presenting about its training program and its development. The center developed the program, called Consult Right, to expand its ability to add consultants.

“We are showing the evolution of the training program and why we had to adapt it because, essentially, there is a course at Oakland called Peer Tutoring Composition, and it’s writing 3062 now,” Cerku said. “There had been some different developments as far as course requirements, so we wanted to kind of adapt our training so that we not only could seize potential consultants from that class but from outside the class as well.”

Each person has their own part of the project to talk about and plays an important part in the development of the project and presentation.

“I’m a graduate student, and I’m a little older than maybe the typical undergraduate student here, and I’ve had quite a few jobs on campus,” Douglas said. “I think that this is the best training program that I’ve ever been through in terms of student employment and not only terms of preparing me for the duties that I would have to hold as an employee here, but also in terms of personal development.”

Shriner did not have any prior tutoring experience and was one of the consultants that did not take the writing center studies course. She is a new consultant that was hired in the fall and will offer her perspective on how the training provided her with the same information to attain the job.

“We each have a distinct outlook on the training process just regarding our role in the center,” Shriner said. “I’m a new hire, so I’m speaking about how the training process in the writing center as a whole works as being a new hire.”

When attending this event the OUWC members are hoping to get other writing centers into a similar type of training for consultants and give others more information on the development and adaptation of writing centers.