Wednesday, July 22, 2009 Fun With Writing Center StaffThe Writing Center staff has been enjoying leading sessions and advising students one on one during the first few days of the Minneapolis residency. If you are attending the residency come say hello to us in Ferguson room 85 on the West Bank campus!
We know how hard it can be to coordinate attending a residency, but we have found that students and staff alike find the experience incredibly worthwhile and rewarding (not to mention it fulfills your degree requirements!). The past few weeks have been hectic for our staff as we prepared for the largest residency yet. Without a doubt, though, the feelings we have when we attend residencies and have the chance to meet our students face to face is well worth all of the preparation. As Kari Wold put it, "I love the opportunity to see students at various stages in their educations/motivational levels. I love seeing them collaborate and motivate each other, and I'm always excited for the opportunity to meet/visit with staff, students, and faculty. It's encouraging to me in my own work here at Walden and in my private studies." Kari is not alone in her sentiments. As our Senior Consultant Amber Cook said, "Residencies offer me the opportunity to learn about all the great work Walden students are doing in their programs and their practice. I always come back feeling inspired and excited to continue my support of Walden student work!" Brian Timmerman, Senior Writing Consultant, added, "Hearing people explain their work. Many times their impromptu, informal presentation is clearer than what they have on the page."
We all know that frustration can come hand in hand with the learning experience. When asked how she responds to students who might be frustrated, Erica Schatzlein said, "I love being able to hear, in more detail, what students are going through and see what I can do to make their writing life a little easier. Being able to offer presentations with helpful, easy to access information and seeing the student response renews my dedication to helping all of our Walden scholars achieve." Sometimes, as Editor Annie Pezalla said, the chance to meet face to face with students, whether they have attended one of our sessions or not, is satisfaction enough: "The aspect of residencies that I like most is the face-to-face contact I have with students who I've been working with online. Seeing them helps to strengthen to bond I feel with those students and makes me want to work even harder to help them reach their goals."
The Dissertation Editors work with our students at several stages in their academic career, including the stressful dissertation process. As Editor Tim McIndoo said, "getting to teach, getting to help students directly and immediately, and seeing the enthusiasm on students' faces" reminds the Editors that it is all worth it in the end.
We know you all as students, and residencies also give us the opportunity to know the more personal side of your lives. As Martha King, Senior Dissertation Editor, said, "What I like most about attending residencies is the chance to meet and connect with students and learn more about what their life and work experiences are and how we can best help support them in the dissertation process."
Jeff Zuckerman, the Director of Writing Services, summed up how we all feel after a Walden residency when he said, "After attending more than 100 residencies, I can still say that meeting with students and faculty face-to-face reminds me of the high caliber of working professionals and caring educators at the heart of Walden. I'm always inspired by our students' stories, by their motivation, and by their commitment to social change. That, plus they still laugh at my jokes after all these years."
We hope to see you at a residency soon!
-The Walden University Writing Staff