Writing Center announces a change in focus

By Scot Kirk, Contributing Writer

Friday, February 25, 2005

The Writing Center is no longer available for web surfing, socializing, or other activities unrelated to writing.

Director Obi Iwuanyanwu (Obiwu) hopes these changes will improve the writing abilities of Central State students. “We want to streamline the services of the center,” says Obiwu.

Beginning Jan. 31, 2005, the Writing Center will only be available for tutorial or writing services. Obiwu wants to make the Writing Center distinguishable from all the other computer labs on campus. He says that students who wish to check e-mail, surf the net, or listen to music should use the Cyber Café or other labs.

The Writing Center staff, Obiwu and several writing tutors, want to concentrate on helping students develop their writing skills. Obiwu says that many of Central State’s students are not doing well in their English courses. “I think that there is a lack of appreciation for good writing and (a lack of appreciation for) the Writing Center,” says Obiwu. “Students seem to think that the job of the tutor is to proofread their papers, it’s not.” Obiwu says many students believe that tutors are there to write papers for students instead of walking them through the writing process.

Obiwu has posted a series of rules for using the lab. These rules require students to sign into the lab and prohibit students from printing material off the Internet. Hats and do rags are no longer permitted. Students may use cell phones outside the lab only.

Writing tutor Anthony Evans, a sophomore, agrees with the changes and new rules. “This is supposed to be a place of business, not pleasure,” says Evans. He says that many students use the center for the wrong reasons and probably won’t like the changes, but Evans still feels they are necessary. Enforcing the rules will the responsibility of the entire staff, but Evans says that he doesn’t think that his job will be any harder than it already is.

The humanities department currently funds the writing center. Because the department’s budget is tight. Obiwu says he has difficulty obtaining the supplies needed to operate the center. Obtaining materials like printer paper, ink and even furniture is becoming increasingly difficult. “We want to get the word out,” says Obiwu.

By reducing waste and the number of students using the center, Obiwu hopes to stretch his supplies as much as he can. In the long term, Obiwu hopes that the university will fund the center apart from the humanities department. He says that since students from across campus use the center, every department should share in the cost of running it.

For more information about the writing center call 376-6337.


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