Writing center extends service beyond Mansion

By Staff Writer
November 7, 2002

The Rough Writers of Cabrini are now offering their services in the library and dormitories to anyone in the community who wishes to schedule a consultation.

“At the present time, we do not see many students,” Dr. Ted Blaisdell, the writing center coordinator, said. “So we wanted to put ourselves in ‘harms way.'”

The present “home” of the writing center is in rooms 32, 33 and 34 of the Mansion.

“Students come to us as professionals,” Blaisdell said. “They sometimes write about very personal information. If necessary, we can move to one of the private rooms.”

This level of privacy is accompanied by an expectancy of confidentiality between writers who seek advice and those who are tutoring.

Peer tutors are required to submit two letters of recommendation to express the applicant’s compositional skills as well as their character.

“We want to know that the [applicant] is responsible,” Blaisdell said. “This can be a very intimate situation, when you are discussing personal topics in a close setting. We don’t want someone who will be ‘hitting-on’ people.”

Extending services beyond the Mansion provides a less intimate situation for those who seek assistance. The Rough Writers offer help with research papers, creative writing, personal writing as well as any piece of work a student, or even faculty member, wishes to have read.

“We do not ‘fix’ papers. Rather we show them how to fix it themselves,” Blaisdell said. The purpose of the writing center services is to assist writers to build up their compositional “chops.”

“You can’t do my exercise for me,” Blaisdell said, offering an analogy of their services. “If I wanted to build my muscles, I would have to go to the gym myself. You wouldn’t be able to do it for me. You could show me, but I would still have to do it myself.”

“What we do is ‘diagnostic reading.’ The idea is to start recognizing patterns,” he said. “I focus more on technical writing, where Rachel is better with creative writing, such as poetry.” Rachel Slaughter is a specialist in the writing center who works with Blaisdell to assist students.

“We will see anyone in the community at any time in the writing process,” he said. “It’s best to set up sequential appointments in order to work on successive rough drafts. We want students to have something to be proud of.”

Anyone interested in a consultation can go to hours at any location.

Writing Center Hours

Mansion, room 32:
Monday 10am-6pm
Tuesday 10am-6pm
Wednesday 1pm-6pm
Thursday 10am-6pm
Friday 10am-6pm

Sunday Xavier
Tuesday New Residence
Wednesday Woodcrest
Thursday Holy Spirit Library

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Staff Writer

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