On February 25th and 26th, members of the CLC Writing Center staff took part in the Midwest Writing Centers Association (MWCA) 2021 virtual conference, “Creating Common Ground: Crosstalk and Community in the Writing Center.”

This conference was a reboot of the three-day event that had been scheduled to take place in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, in March 2020.  CLC writing tutors actually travelled to Iowa and took part in pre-conference workshops before the decision was made by MWCA to cancel the full conference.

This 2021 virtual version of the 2020 conference included a keynote address by Carol Severino, Professor of Rhetoric and the Director of the Writing Center at University of Iowa, as well as a combination of synchronous and asynchronous presentations.

A group of CLC peer writing tutors created an asynchronous version of their 2020 presentation, “Building Community: The Power of Creating and Sharing Tutor Philosophies.”  Facilitated by Dr. Jenny Staben, Faculty Coordinator of the Writing Center, these student tutors explored the role one assignment, the “Tutor Philosophy,” played in their development as tutors.  In addition to sharing their philosophies, the tutors discussed the process they went through to create them and how they view them now, over a year later.  The tutors participating included Johnny Beranek, B’Nasia Dell, Tatiana Kapinos, Martha Machuca, Sarah Sayerstad, as well as former tutor, Claudia Robinson. 

Video Version of Presentation

This session, along with other video and multimedia presentations, was hosted on the conference website.

Kate Balogh, a writing tutor both at CLC and at the College of DuPage, facilitated a workshop called “Welcoming the New Kid: Infographics as Multimodal Texts in the Writing Center.”  Based on work she has done for the COD Writing Center, Kate led an interactive session that educated participants on key elements of infographic design analysis, facilitated a discussion of infographics as multimodal texts, and also shared information about various accessible graphic design platforms.  Kate was awarded a MWCA travel grant to attend and present at the 2020 conference in Cedar Rapids, only one of two awarded; winners were chosen based on the quality of their proposals.  

The Midwest Writing Centers Association is a regional nonprofit organization that encourages communication and collaboration among writing centers in the Midwestern region of the United States which includes Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North and South Dakota, the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, and Wisconsin. 

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