The Writing Center

About the Writing Center

Appointments | Our Approach | MythsMeet the Staff | For Faculty & Staff | Employment Opportunities

Appointments

How to Make an Appointment

To make an appointment, either call us at (360) 867-6420 or come see us in person in Library 2304. You will need to tell us your last and first name as officially recorded by the college; but if you prefer to be called by a different name, please let us know! We will also need to know what program you're in, what type of writing you're bringing in, and any other notes you want your tutor to have beforehand.

At this time we are unable to make appointments online, but if you have further questions or need to make a special request in regards to your appointment, you can email us at tescwriting@gmail.com.

Our appointments begin on the hour and half hour, and last for either 25 minutes or 50 minutes depending on your request and availability. Please note that appointments do not go for a full half hour or hour, because our tutors need downtime between appointments.

What to Expect When You Arrive

When you come to the Writing Center, you will be greeted by our desk receptionist who will check your appointment, give you an Author's Note, and alert your tutor. Please note that the Writing Center shares the entrance space and front desk with the QuaSR Center (for math and science tutoring), and that the Writing Center is through the door to the right of the desk, room 2304.

You will sit down with your peer tutor at a Formica table and go over the Author's Note. This document allows you and the tutor to become acquainted, understand what is being worked on, and decide on goals for the session.

At the Writing Center, our tutors do not "fix" or "correct" your writing. Instead, they talk to you about what is going on in your writing, about your ideas, about patterns they notice, about what they find unclear, and about what they notice that works well. They can talk through ideas and arguments, and discuss strategies for technical aspects of writing. They will not tell you what to write or how to write it. You as the writer are in the driver's seat, and retain authority over and responsibility for your writing. Tutors are not experts nor teachers, but peers with knowledge and perspective to offer about writing.

You can make your appointment more effective by coming in prepared with your writing, the prompt if there is one, and a sense of what kind of feedback you want. The better you can articulate your needs the better your tutor can offer helpful feedback.

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Our Approach

The staff of the Writing Center includes a dynamic group of undergraduate peer tutors dedicated to the process of writing, the growth of individual writers, and genuine conversation. We promote writing as a form of communication, not as a solo act. As writers ourselves, we embrace a world in need of voice and discourse. As readers, we acknowledge the need for active listening and empathy. The tutors of the Writing Center are excited to work with writers at any stage of their writing process (brainstorming, drafting, revising, revising, revising, editing) and with writers of every skill level. Proofreading, the final stage of the writing process, is vitally important to a writer’s finished work. The Writing Center believes that proofreading is the primary responsibility of the writer who owns the writing. Therefore, Writing Center tutors are available to assist writers in developing their own effective proofreading strategies.

Writing is a process that is never finished. Each draft can bring new questions, research, and focus. In a tutoring session the writer is free to explore their voice without a set destination, with the assurance that the journey itself has a purpose. As tutors, our main goal is to illuminate each writer’s process and empower their voice. The one-on-one nature of a tutoring session means that we meet each writer where they are and devote our full attention to their ideas. The fact that we are peer tutors means that we work with each writer to set goals for the session, for the particular piece of writing, and for their own growth as a writer.

As representatives of the Writing Center and as writers ourselves, we are committed to the expectations of an Evergreen graduate. The necessity of writing to these expectations can be obvious: articulate and assume responsibility for your own work; demonstrate critical, integrative, and independent thinking; communicate creatively and effectively. But the work we do in the Writing Center is about more than just writing. Our deepest hope is to facilitate writers in becoming more self-aware and empowered members of society, addressing yet another expectation of an Evergreen graduate: to participate collaboratively in our diverse society. We do our best work as tutors when we are in a relationship with writers and faculty. We hope to continue to cultivate these relationships to best support the growth of every student.

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Myths about the Writing Center

Myth #1: The Writing Center is only for inexperienced writers.

Reality: We can help people who aren't experienced at writing, certainly, but some of our best work is done with those who know how to write and who want some help along the way. Our tutors are very knowledgeable about writing, and can help no matter what experience level you're at.

Myth #2: The Writing Center "cleans up," "fixes," or proofreads my papers before I submit them.

Reality: The Writing Center promotes writing as a process; as such, writers shouldn't make the Writing Center their last stop before a paper is submitted. The Writing Center is a place writers can come at all stages of writing, and writers are encouraged to come in at the earliest stage possible -- whether that's at the brainstorming stage, the outlining stage, or the drafting stage. We will, of course, look over any final drafts you may have, but we won't fix the problems within the draft ourselves.

Myth #3: The Writing Center will make my writing perfect.

Reality: We won't make your writing perfect, but we can certainly help you to make it better. In fact, talking about your writing with a tutor can make you a better writer.

Myth #4: Writing tutors possess all knowledge about writing.

Reality: No one knows everything about writing. While our tutors know quite a bit, there may be times when they don't know the answer to the a question and will work with you to figure it out.

Myth #5: The Writing Center can't help me with my writing.

Reality: The only way the Writing Center couldn't help you is if there were a "perfect writer," which simply doesn't exist. We can help you at every stage of your writing process -- from coming up with ideas for your paper to paper revision to your final edits. We can also help you with writing concepts and techniques.

Myth #6: I can drop off my paper, come back later, and it will be corrected.

Reality: The Writing Center's philosophy is that writers can best improve their writing through a process of feedback with readers, rather than simply having their papers "corrected." As such, we promote a one-on-one environment where writers interact with tutors to improve their writing and their process.

Myth #7: Bringing my paper in shortly before it is due will significantly improve its quality.

Reality: In fact, if you're bringing a paper in an hour before it is due, you haven't left yourself any time at all to do a thoughtful and useful revision of the assignment you are working on. We strongly encourage writers to build the Writing Center into their writing process and bring their work in a few days before it is due to allow ample time for revision and reflection.

Myth #8: Tutors will read my paper ahead of time.

Reality: Tutors see enough writers per day that this is not only impractical, but simply undoable. We also think it's better when both the student and the tutor review the paper at the same time so that they can discuss any questions or reflections in real time.

Myth #9: Tutors know all the material in my program.

Reality: Tutors do not do any of the readings for any program on campus other than the ones that they are enrolled in as students themselves. Tutors depend largely on writers to inform them about their assignment and whatever reading was necessary for that assignment. Thus, bringing a written copy of the prompt or instructions from your faculty can significantly improve the efficiency and accuracy of your session.

Myth #10: Appointments are required at the Writing Center.

Reality: This is true at our Tacoma Campus location, where our staffing is limited; however, for those using our Olympia location, both centers accommodate and welcome drop-in writers looking for writing help. Although we may not require appointments, we do recommend that writers make an appointment in order to ensure that they can see a tutor at the time that they come in. This is especially recommended during our peak times in the first and last two weeks of every quarter.

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Meet the Senior Staff

sandy

Sandra L. Yannone, Ph.D.
Director of the Writing Center
Member of the Faculty

LIB 2310, Olympia campus
Room 124, Tacoma campus

sandy

Sandy is the shepherd of all the peer cats in the Writing Center. She oversees the hiring, tutor training, and on-going professional development of the Writing Center staff. She also works to maintain hospitable, friendly, educationally rigorous environments for writers visiting the main Center in Library 2310, Olympia, and the Tacoma Writing Center in Room 124. Sandy also consults with faculty to encourage best practices for the teaching of writing across Evergreen's curriculum and collaborates with staff colleagues to provide additional writing services to writers. As a member of the faculty, Sandy annually performs governance for the College.

Sandy holds a BA from Wheaton College, an MFA from Emerson College, and a Ph.D. from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She has published her poems and book reviews in Ploughshares, CALYX: A Journal of Art and Literature by Women, Prairie Schooner, The Gay and Lesbian Review (World-wide), and the Seattle Review, among others.

She also is the owner of Kitschlandia, an export business specializing in '50s kitsch.

michael

Michael Pez DispenserMichael Radelich
Learning Resource Specialist (Fall, Winter, Spring only)
LIB 2304A
Direct Line: (360) 867-6557
Email: Michael Radelich

Michael hails originally from NYC, by way of being stuck in the flat, frigid, and arid Midwest for 15 years. At Evergreen, he works one-on-one with all types of writers in writing, literature, and mathematics. At home, he gardens, cooks, makes furniture, makes art, and studies film. He was runner up for GQ's Watermelon Head Man of the Year for the last four years in a row, narrowly beat out by Jude Law in 2004.

Elissa Goss & Ben Chassler Lucal
Special Assistants to the Director
Writing Tutors
LIB 2304F
Direct Line: (360) 867-6981

Email: tescwriting@gmail.com

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For Faculty & Staff

Utilizing Program Tutors

We can arrange for tutors to be available to facilitate writing activities, such as peer review workshops, in your program. If you would like a tutor available on a regular, weekly basis, we need notification before the beginning of the quarter; we will not schedule tutors for weekly in-program support after the beginning of the quarter. Please note that our ability to provide a tutor for in-program support is dependent upon scheduling and it may not be possible to honor your request (though we will do our best!) Please contact us to request an in-program tutor.

While our program tutors are trained to give some background about the Writing Center, please keep in mind that the message that the faculty sends is equally, if not more, important. We suggest that visits to or work with the Writing Center be completely integrated with your program. The attitude and wording used to announce the Writing Center's participation within your program can make or break an entire quarter's worth of visits. Please consider carefully how you announce our involvement.

Tutors are also available to facilitate workshops from our Workshop Series as part of a program. We expect that faculty will attend in-program workshops to answer questions about assignments and program logistics. Writing Center policy dictates that faculty and staff requesting workshops must pay for any required materials from their program budget. Please contact us to request a workshop and find out about needed materials.

The main goal of our tutors is to assist writers in becoming more confident and proficient. Tutors give feedback, offer suggestions, discuss writing strategies, and emphasize the importance of a solid writing process. Tutors are not teachers or evaluators; a tutor is a peer who assists writers as they grapple with the act and art of writing. While writers may be working on a specific assignment within a session, the outcome of the session may not immediately demonstrate improvements in that student’s writing. Because we value writing as a process, our primary concern is encouraging better engagement in the act of writing rather than trying to improve a single piece of work.

A note about privacy: Any information that writers provide to the Writing Center for our use is considered confidential and used only to schedule and track appointments. We do not disclose records of appointments to faculty because it undermines the Center/writer relationship.

Learning Resource Specialist

Michael Radelich is the Learning Resource Specialist at The Evergreen State College. He is a professional staff person hired to work with writers who have needs beyond the capability of a typical undergraduate tutor. Michael can work with writers who might be described as “developmental” writers. He has undergraduate degrees in mathematics and English, a Master’s degree in English, and a Ph.D. in American Literature and Writing. He has been a college-level teacher for thirteen years, and a private tutor in writing, literature, physics, chemistry, biology, SAT & ACT testing preparation, languages, history, and mathematics for over fifteen years.

Michael generally works with writers referred to him by any of the various Evergreen Student Support Services offices, as well as writers referred to him directly by faculty or staff members. He also will work with any student referred to him by other Writing Center tutors. He requires hour-long weekly appointments that a student keeps regularly, once or twice a week; occasionally, he will work longer than an hour if necessary and if his schedule permits.

To make an appointment, please call, email, or stop by.

Michael Radelich
Library 2304A (inside the Writing Center)
Hours: 9AM-5PM
Direct Line: (360) 867-6557
Email: Michael Radelich

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Employment Opportunities

For more information about available positions and their requirements, visit our Employment page.

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