Undergraduate and graduate peer tutors from across the disciplines are hired for work through faculty referral, selective searches, and a careful screening process. Students must have a 3.2 g.p.a. or better (major dependent) and must exhibit strong writing and interpersonal skills. Students are compensated for their work through the WRC budget or through the Federal Work Study Program. Students with at least sophomore standing may also receive free elective academic credit for their work through the UMD Contract/Experiential Learning Program.
Once hired, staff are trained through an initial self-paced training process completed within a few weeks. Thereafter, tutors participate in weekly training workshops throughout their WRC careers. Tutors may choose to become certified up to Level III through the CRLA National Tutor Certification Program.
WRC staff are pulled from a wide range of academic fields at UMD. The WRC does its best to schedule the appropriate tutor for a session.
The current list of majors for the Spring 2015 staff is listed here.
The Graduate Assistant, typically selected from the UMD Professional Writing Program, helps to provide WRC services. Responsibilities include facilitating weekly staff training workshops, overseeing student staff, tutoring graduate students, and offering university workshops on résumé writing and writing graduate school personal statements.
Both tutors and TRIO grant participants may become mentors for our TRIO Mentor Program offered exclusively to TRIO grant participants. Students who show increasing mastery of study, academic and life skills may be asked to work one-on-one and in groups with grant participants who are developing their own abilities. Mentors facilitate and conduct both individual weekly appointments and periodic group meetings.
Mentors participate in a series of initial training sessions before beginning their work. Periodic meetings are held thereafter.
Student receptionists greet visitors, arrange student appointments, work with student files, and answer the phones for the general public. Receptionists receive training through general supervision and periodic workshops.
Amy Parelman, selects, trains, and supervises the student staff. In addition, she also:
- Develops and supervises all WRC programs and services
- Conducts staff and university workshops
- Sponsors cultural events for the UMD community (i.e., fiction and poetry readings)
- Provides direct services to students using the WRC
- Collaborates with faculty to develop peer writing programs across the curriculum
- Provides special services to TRIO federal grant clients
Writing Center Assistants:
The assistants aid the director in addressing the Center's needs. They organize weekly training workshops on a variety of subjects (such as tutoring in different academic disciplines), and directly observe and supervise the tutors.