Dr. Sandi Van Lieu and I saw a need for additional writing help for students, as well as a need for opportunities for our English majors to gain job experience. The Writing Lab was born in the Fall of 2019. Over the past year, I have worked to create organized systems for the Writing Lab, including training for our tutors and a system for collecting data from students and tutors. We now have forms to gather feedback from students and faculty. The Writing Lab continues to grow as we serve more students each semester. Many faculty have added the Writing Lab directly to their courses using the Redirect Tool.
Shakespeare on Stage
At the beginning of Summer 2020, Suzanne Waldenberger approached me with the idea to run a Shakespeare course over the summer that would allow the YC community to participate in a discussion of Shakespeare centered around the productions offered by the Stratford Festival. Though the course did not make, I decided to move forward with the weekly discussions. Each week of the summer session, we watched a different Shakespeare production. On Monday nights, we would gather on a Zoom call to discuss the play with faculty and community members. It was wonderful to see full-time faculty, adjunct faculty, OLLI faculty, and community members engaging in discussions that were live-streamed to the YC Youtube page.
Shakespeare on Stage Summer 2020
English Program Development and Marketing:
In an effort to locate and recruit English majors, I have spent time over the past few years branding and marketing the English Department. I created bookmarks that have been given to students on the Prescott campus, as well as in the Dual Enrollment classrooms across the county. In addition, I created coordinating flyers for the English Club and the Writing Lab. Finally, I have worked to create flyers for use on campus, as well as to distribute to Dual Enrollment students, with upcoming literature, rhetoric, and creative writing courses.
(Card sent to students who tested
into Honors courses Summer 2020.)
In response to the needs of our students at YC, I helped to create two new courses for YC. ENG 114: Basics of APA Style is a self-paced 8 week course designed for students who need additional instruction in learning APA style. This course has been given to the Nursing department to use as they see fit.
ENG 210: Intro to Rhetoric was submitted to Curriculum for approval in the Fall 2019 semester by Tina Luffman and I. This course meets the needs of English majors who need a rhetoric course in able to enter NAU as a junior. Due to changes in the NAU course outcomes after our YC submission, I had to work diligently to create a course that meets both the YC outcomes, as well as the NAU outcomes so that the course would transfer. The result is a comprehensive course that covers the history of rhetoric, identification of rhetorical strategies, and rhetorical decisions in composition.
Student Support and Encouragement
Recognizing that composition students need extra support, I set out to create courses that would help them focus on achieving their goals. The first element of this is the What’s My Why? assignment at the beginning of the semester. I ask students to think about what their purpose in life is and how the course they are taking helps them to move closer to their goals.
Another way that I have tried to encourage students is through sending them cards. One semester, I sent students a series of cards, including one that included their “What’s My Why?” letter. In the summer of 2020, I sent every one of my ENG 237 students a card and brownies. Here are some examples of these cards, as well as some of the student responses:
“I just wanted to take a moment to thank you for the card you sent me. I’ve been having a hard tine this week, as someone has passed away. That letter couldn’t have came at a more perfect time, and I am so thankful to have received it! I am determined to finish this course, and pass this course knowing I have worked hard for it, regardless of any hardships. That was very sweet of you, and I have never received something that inspiring from an instructor, so I am very touched. Thank you very much!”
“I wanted to reach out to you and thank you for the card and brownies; it made my day to receive them in the mail. I look forward to continuing in your class and learning about the subject of women in literature from you over this summer.”