Writing papers can be an intimidating aspect of university life. To be honest, even writing a 280-character tweet is challenging, so professors are really expecting a lot from sleep-deprived students when they assign multiple page essays. As daunting as the writing process can appear, it can actually end up being a rewarding experience. Tutors at the Writing Center are dedicated to helping students be the best writers they can be.
The Writing Center is located on the first floor of the Albin O. Kuhn Library, right next to the Math Lab and the printing station. The center is open Monday-Friday, from 10 A.M. until 7 P.M., and at certain times during the semester, expands its hours to offer additional assistance with final papers.
Appointments can be made in intervals of either thirty or sixty minutes, and students are able to schedule up to three appointments per week. Students can sign up to work with a specific tutor in advance or make a walk-in appointment with one of the writing tutors on-duty.
Beginning last semester, Professor Elaine MacDougall has been the director of the Writing Center. She has brought her cozy, yoga-loving vibes to the center, ensuring that everyone who enters the Writing Center feels at home there.
Over the years, UMBC’s Writing Center has become a welcoming environment. Once located in the daunting, dark basement of the library, the Writing Center now has decent lighting, comfortable chairs and candy. Yep, there are almost always Jolly Ranchers or Hershey Kisses available to ease the writing process.
The sweetest things at the Writing Center are the tutors. Although it is commonly assumed that only English majors are writing tutors, the tutors at the Writing Center study a variety of majors, all passionate about writing and helping others. Regardless of what class you are writing for, there is bound to be a tutor who is familiar with the topic you are studying.
Almost all of the tutors have an online profile available through the Writing Center website. In these profiles, they highlight their strongest areas of writing, from outlining to crafting the perfect conclusion.
Meagan Barrett is a junior English major who works in the Writing Center. She says, “The best part about the Writing Center is that we [tutors] aren’t here to judge students or grade them. We just give feedback because our main objective is to inspire improvement. You don’t leave the Writing Center with a grade, you just leave with a better paper.”
If you still feel nervous about making an official appointment at the Writing Center, come check out how a session goes during a workshop. On Wednesday, Nov. 15, the Writing Center is extending its hours and hosting one of its many workshops. From 7-9, tutors will be available to help students with creative projects. This workshop is organized in conjunction with Bartleby to help students polish their creative writing pieces before Dec. 1, the last day submissions can be sent into the literary magazine.
No matter what class you may be writing for, the Writing Center will without a doubt be there to help you make your paper the best it can be.