By Amy Sexton, Kaplan University Writing Center Tutor
Faculty and students from Kaplan University recently joined over 90 schools world-wide to participate in the Fall 2015 International Write-In. The International Write-In, organized by Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania, invites colleges, universities, and learning centers to hold events to support student writers each spring and fall. This year, from December 1 to December 10, schools and institutions from six countries participated. (Click here for an interactive map illustrating the global reach of this event.) Kaplan University participated for the first time this year and holds the distinction of being the only fully online college to host a Fall 2015 International Write-In event.
As an online institution, we realized that we would need to be creative in utilizing our virtual space. So, while many other colleges and universities provided nourishing snacks and spaces for students to write, we chose to host Write Well!, an online workshop designed to help students be healthy and well, in mind, body, and spirit. Write Well!, hosted by writing tutors Amy Sexton and Molly Starkweather, science tutor Christie Morgan, and composition professor, Dr. Ellen Manning was held on December 7. The 30-minute workshop began with tips for healthy eating, motivation for exercise, and strategies for stress management, all presented by Christie Morgan. Morgan also shared several online resources and tools to help participants take control of their health. Amy Sexton spoke briefly about the writing process and ways that students can discover their own writing process as well as time management strategies for writers. Dr. Ellen Manning then led the group through a guided breathing and meditation exercise as soft, calming music played quietly in the background. After the workshop wrapped up, tutor Molly Starkweather stayed to chat with students about their writing questions and processes.
One goal of the International Write-In was to generate a social media buzz, and Kaplan University participated in this initiative as well. The event was widely publicized on the Kaplan Academic Support Center Facebook page, and the recording was posted on that page and on the @KaplanASC Twitter account. Kaplan University students and faculty can also listen to the Write Well! recording and read the presentation via the Writing Workshops page. Readers can also see how other students, writing centers, and universities participated by viewing the event tagboard here. Enjoy, and stay well!