By: Shuey Mirkin  | 

Writing Center Visits FIT

At our Wilf Campus Writing Center, students come together in a calm environment to work collaboratively on their writing. The writing center tutors who were here realize the importance of this task, and therefore constantly refine and polish how they approach their role. This involves frequent reading of scholarship and attending sessions about tutoring in order to improve their knowledge and know-how.

Part of this training took place on a snowy Sunday afternoon at the beginning of this month in the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT), where the Wilf campus tutors joined tutors from the Beren Campus and FIT Writing Centers for a tutor education program. The collaboratively organized and led program was designed to strengthen tutoring skills while informing and educating the different writing centers about the variety of ways the respective centers perform their jobs.

The program began with three group sessions, each facilitated by a different writing center. For each session, the tutors divided into different groups comprising tutors from all three centers. Elie Sonnenblick and Mitchell Rosenberg from the Wilf Campus kicked things off with a thought-provoking essay of a tutoring session gone wrong. They asked the tutors to examine the situation and determine what they would have done differently, as well as reflect on the different approaches and experiences of each writing center. Next, a group of FIT tutors led an activity about identifying and tutoring different genres of writing. To round out the event, the Beren tutors guided a session about tutoring students in art and literature interpretation.

After the educational portion of the day, the tutors crammed into FIT’s Writing Center for some snacks and socializing. An FIT tutor explained the decor and design of the room, and the Wilf tutors examined it to see whether they had a Keurig (spoiler alert: they didn’t). This socializing experience picked up right where the education sessions left off; the tutors gained valuable insight into how their peers at other universities think about tutoring, and how to apply those different methods to their own work. Wilf Campus tutor Yechiel Schwab remarked, “I found that tutors from other centers approached some issues with a fresh perspective, which I hope to incorporate into my own tutoring.” After enjoying some delicious snacks and admiring the unique artwork in the hallways, the Wilf Campus tutors headed back out into the wind and snow to make the trek back uptown.