Sewanee Writing Center moves upstairs


By Frances Marion Givhan

Executive Staff

Frequent inhabitants of the Academic Technology Center might have noticed more available space this semester. The Writing Center and the tutors employed within have moved stations from the ATC to an office on the first floor in the back left area of the library. If a student goes to the left, toward the computers, then down toward the “juvenile” and children’s book section, he or she will find the new, far more comfortable office where the writing tutors wait to help their fellow students.

According to Vicki Sells, the Associate Provost for Library and Information Technology Services, students who wanted a group study spaced used the office, but it did not have an official purpose. “The space is more conductive to tutoring sessions than the ATC lab,” says Sells. “It’ll make a good space for the Sewanee Writing Center.” Professor Virginia Craighill, the current director of Writing-Across-the Curriculum, has always been a proponent of moving the SWC. “I wanted a much quieter, more dignified, and more appropriate space for the Writing Center,” she says. She believed the SWC should have its own established location.

Though only two weeks into the semester, the new location has already been an improvement from the hushed atmosphere of the ATC. The tutors need a space where they can openly discuss a paper, project, or thesis without the concern of disrupting other students’ work. “The new location will give us more space while simultaneously allowing us to not bother the students hard at work in the ATC,” says William Stokes (C’16).

“I get to talk louder and not feel bad about it,” remarks Dori Wilson (C’16). The new SWC, a bright, open office where students have the opportunity to discuss academic papers and converse with each other, has potential to build stronger relationships between students.

The library plans to undergo a renovation, potentially beginning this summer, and according to Craighill, the Writing Center will be included in plans for a new Learning Commons in duPont Library. The former SWC space in the ATC lab is now the Student Help-Desk for computing issues and problems.

“The SWC space is way more accessible and open – it seems like a definite and exciting change,” adds Zack Loehle (C’17).