Le Moyne Searches for Writing Center Director


Rachel Salvetti

Student Sidney Hall works at the Writing Center front desk.

Le Moyne is searching for a person to fill the new position of Writing Center director and expand the services the Writing Center offers to students.

The position will not be affiliated with a particular department, although the English department is interested in the search because it offers the core writing classes Critical Writing 101 and English 210, said Professor James Hannan, the English department faculty member.

“We are all excited that this is moving forward,” Maura Brady, the chair of the English department, said.

The Writing Center is a Student Success Center initiative in cooperation with Student Development. The new director will report directly to the college provost. By not being affiliated with a particular department the Writing Center will be better able to assist students with the many forms of writing used in the College of Arts and Sciences, the Purcell School of Professional Studies and the Madden Business School. The search committee hopes to hire a person skilled in these varied writing disciplines Hannan said.

The Writing Center, located in the Noreen Falcone Library, employs seven peer tutors and one professional tutor. It offers hour-long one-on-one tutoring sessions for students in all academic disciplines. “It can be any topic,” Jaclyn Chupeck, the professional Writing Center tutor said. “[For example] we’ve had history, psychology [and] philosophy.”

The Writing Center assists students of all classes and skill levels. “The freshman students come in a lot,” Chupeck said. The Writing Center is also utilized by many students who need assistance in other areas of writing.

“I work with graduate students,” Chupeck said. “Some students come in who want help with the writing portion of their cover letters and resumes. We see students of all levels.” The Writing Center staff assists students for whom English is not their first language.

Le Moyne hopes that the new director can expand these services, Hannan said. “Currently the emphasis is on tutoring,” Hannan said. “The idea will be for a Writing Center director to come in with what we refer to as ‘programming ideas’, [such as] how do we start doing some other activities in that space.”

The new director will allow the Writing Center to better help students already accomplished in writing, but who want to continue improving their skills, for example, honor students or students in graduate programs.

“That is something we’re not able to do very much right now because we have to reach out to students and reach out to faculty and inform them that that is a possibility,” Hannan said.

Le Moyne searched for a director last year but was unable to conclude the search successfully. This fall the search is again underway. Hannan said that the search committee hopes to hire the new director in the upcoming semester so that he or she can begin in the summer.

The new position was approved as a part of the academic affairs budget last year when the initial search began. The amount that the position will cost the college is not available.

The college would also like the new director to provide support for the faculty who teach writing, to help them improve the ways they teach writing and the way the peer tutors are trained.

“We don’t have that director [yet],” Hannan said. “But we want someone to come in with that level of enthusiasm and expertise and [the] ability to work with faculty.”

The college expects to utilize the Writing Center space to hold activities related to writing such as lectures or conferences. “We want to use that space to build a culture of writing as something that people are aware of and that space is very nice for that,” Hannan