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Your UWC Teammates

February 29, 2016

By Cindy McPeters

The beginning of a new semester is a little like the start of a new sports season—you get a clean slate with no losses against you, only the opportunity to put touchdowns on the scoreboard. At Appalachian, you have a whole string of players and coaches on your side. Whether you are just scrimmaging with a little prewriting or playing for the Lombardi trophy with your thesis, you should get comfortable with the writing game. Meet some of the folks at the University Writing Center who are on your team.

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First in the lineup is rookie consultant, Derek. A graduate student in the field of public history, he is enthusiastic about joining your writing-support team. Derek’s wants to help you score by helping you block your fears. “I try to boost the client’s confidence,” he explains. On the gridiron of writing, Derek wants to help you with the tools that you need to write better. This might be ideas for discussing your assignment with your professor or helping you come up your own revisions to clarify your writing. Beyond the scoreboard, his “best measure of success” is how you feel about your writing after the session.Any way you throw it, Derek will support you in getting a first down!


Returning for her second season on the University Writing Center team is Veronica, the cheerleader with a heart of gold. She says, “My main goal as a consultant is to ensure that each client leaves the session feeling more confident in themselves and their writing ability.” Veronica wants to help by collaborating with you and facilitating your development of ideas. She hopes you leave your writing center session feeling self-assured and ready to get out on that field. This supportive consultant is double-majoring in Art and English and is in the 4+1 program, working on an MA in English. She’s got the skills and know-how to help you accelerate your writing game and prevent interceptions!


Veteran coach Mary Neal stands out in the field and shouts, “Everyone is a writer!” She’ll help you discover your talents as you take in information and learn new skills during your writing center sessions. She wants you to “feel both confident and competent” about communicating your ideas. A true professional, Mary Neal got her training with other teams before joining ours. Her editorial work experience includes newspaper, fiction, academic books for university presses, and textbooks for K-12. With her career wins behind you, you’ll get to the end zone!


Andy is returning to the roster this season after a 10-year hiatus. Don’t let that break fool you; he is a lecturer in the Rhetoric and Composition Program and knows the playbook by heart. Of his work as a UWC consultant, he wants “to help clients as much as [he] can to learn to help themselves and to do so in a way that makes them feel supported.” Like the punter on special teams, Andy will line up at the right distance and signal the fullback just as he wants to help writers “to strengthen and grow their writing and to communicate more effectively” with their audiences and fans!


When you visit the University Writer Center for your writing workout, you might view Kristin as your trainer. She wants to work collaboratively with you “to achieve a common goal”; that might be focusing on a special issue or helping you realize something that you haven’t yet questioned. A senior English major, Kristin has been training in the UWC for two seasons and says “each new session … brings new experiences, and [she learns] from each one.” Running in from the sidelines, Kristin will keep you writing, revising, and performing at peak levels!

While it sometimes seems that the quarterback is the most critical player on a football team, one player doesn’t win a Super Bowl. You never have to practice alone but instead can write with support on the line of scrimmage. Get your writing workout at the University Writing Center in the lower level of Belk library; our practice field is open Monday through Thursday 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Look forward to nothing but wins this writing season!

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