KATHERINE ROHLOFF ’19
The Trinity Tripod sat down with Writing Associate, Lexie Axon ’19, to get the behind-the-scenes scoop on the inner-workings of Trinity College’s Writing Center. Students can find the Writing Center located in the yellow English Department Building at 115 Vernon Street on the north side of campus.
Trinity Tripod: What made you want to join the Writing Center?
Lexie Axon: When I was nominated to be a Writing Associate, I instantly knew I wanted to apply. I’m an English major, and I absolutely adore writing, so I figured it would be perfect for me. In addition, I was a tutor all throughout high school, and truly enjoyed that experience. I love that we have a Writing Center on campus. I think it’s a great place for students to collaborate with one another and work to produce the best papers possible. I really wanted to be a part of that!
TT: How did you become a Writing Associate and what was the process like for you?
LA: I was nominated in the winter of my freshmen year by Dr. Dan, who was my English professor at the time. Once I was nominated, I had to submit a statement describing my interest in becoming an associate, and my qualifications. I also had to submit a faculty reference, and samples of writing I had done at Trinity. Following the application process, I had an interview with Professor O’Donnell, the head of the Writing Center, and a senior Writing Associate. I remember being so nervous for my interview, but Professor O’Donnell made me feel very comfortable, and we mostly just chatted about my classes and how my freshmen year was going. Honestly, I thought I had bombed the interview because I was so nervous, but then, a few weeks later, I found out that I had been chosen to be an associate. I was elated to get the position, and, as a first-year student, I was thrilled to get involved with something that I could continue with for the remainder of my college career. Later that spring, we had a banquet where the new associates were introduced. I could instantly tell that all the associates were very close, and I could not wait to become a part of such a welcoming, friendly group.
TT: What do you do as a Writing Associate?
LA: As a Writing Associate, I work in the Writing Center and help students with their assignments. Students of all years come into the Writing Center with papers of all subjects, and it’s our responsibility to work with the individual to create the best work possible. Students can come into the center at any point in their writing process, whether it is to brainstorm ideas or to edit their final piece, and our goal is to have the individual leave the appointment feeling confident in the paper, and their skills as a writer. Overall, we want to help the students become better writers, and not just help them get an “A” on an assignment. Other than working with the students, the Writing Associates have monthly meetings in which we discuss ways to improve the center.
TT: What is your favorite writing style/genre and why?
LA: I love creative writing, which is my major concentration. My adoration for creative writing stems from my love of books; since I was a child, I have always loved reading, which developed into a love for writing because I found myself wanting to create my own stories like the ones in my books. Creative writing is my personal favorite because I learn so much about myself through my writing. Any sphere of creativity allows an individual to explore ideas and emotions, and I think that is so important.
TT: What tips do you have for students to become better writers?
LA: I would say the best tip I can give is just to keep writing. The more an individual writes, the stronger their voice and opinions will become. Furthermore, I would emphasize that you have to keep reading. Read anything and everything you can—explore different genres and forms of writing. You will quickly see the influence others writings have on your own, which will help you become a better writer. And, come to the Writing Center, of course!
TT: Does the writing center hold any special events or activities?
LA: In the fall semester, we hold an event for national writing day, when we invited students to come into the center for cookies and hot chocolate. We do not hold too many events, but we are in the process of exploring the possibility of developing other ideas for activities. Therefore, if anyone has suggestions, please let us know.
TT: Would you like to add anything else?
LA: I would like to encourage students to come to the Writing Center! Whether you are a first-year student or a senior, we would love to work with you. As I already mentioned, we work with students no matter where they stand on the assignment—we can help you brainstorm ideas or put the finishing touches on your essay. In addition, if you are interested in becoming a Writing Associate, please apply! I highly encourage you to do so—it is a great gig. Though this year’s applications were already due, please think of applying next year. It is a great way of meeting people on campus—both from getting to know the fellow associates, but also from tutoring students. Overall, I have enjoyed my experience as an associate so far, and, I encourage everyone to come into the center, as well as apply next year if you are interested in becoming a tutor!