The Sweetland Peer Writing Consultant Program provides undergraduate students from across the University with an opportunity to assist fellow U-M undergrads with their writing. Sweetland-trained peer writing consultants offer traditional face-to-face consulting at our main Peer Writing Center (Angell Hall G219) and satellite offices (Duderstadt Center, Lloyd Hall, Shapiro Undergraduate Library) as well as online consulting via OWL (Online Writing Lab). Consultants operate according to the Peer Writing Consultant Program Mission Statement.
Applications are accepted twice a year, in the Fall and Winter terms. Accepted students enroll in Writing 300: Seminar in Peer Writing Consultation which trains them to become theoretically informed and well-practiced Peer Writing Consultants. Students who excel in Writing 300 are invited to join the Peer Writing Consultant Program and enroll in WRITING 301: Practicum in Peer Writing Consultation. After completing 301, students may be asked to continue on as paid consultants.
How to Become a Consultant
The Peer Writing Consultant Program is an excellent way for undergraduate students from across the University to get involved in consulting with their peers about written communication. Becoming a writing consultant gives you the opportunity to work with others on their writing, enjoying conversations about interesting topics, helping to solve writing challenges, and supporting effective writing processes. Once writing consultants enter the job market or go to graduate school, many of them find that the program has given them important experience relating to people, working collaboratively, and engaging in rigorous thinking. Online Writing Lab (OWL) consultants value the hands-on experience they gain with writing and communicating in networked environments.
There are two ways to enter the program:
You may be nominated by an instructor who is familiar with your writing and interpersonal skills. Each fall and winter term, Sweetland emails faculty across campus to ask them to nominate students for the program. When you are nominated, you will receive an email from Sweetland, inviting you to apply to the Peer Writing Consultant Program. The application includes writing an essay and submitting an academic writing sample from a University of Michigan course.
You may apply to the program by completing the application. The application includes writing an essay and submitting an academic writing sample from a University of Michigan course. As part of your application, you must request a confidential letter of recommendation from an instructor who is familiar with your writing and interpersonal skills. Ask the instructor to send this letter directly to firstname.lastname@example.org.
After submitting your application materials
Completed applications are reviewed by Sweetland's faculty, and top applicants are invited to enroll in WRITING 300: Seminar in Peer Writing Consultation, a one-semester course taught in Fall and Winter each year.
If you excel in all aspects of WRITING 300, and we have programmatic need for new consultants, you will be invited to join the Peer Writing Consultant Program.
At that point, you will enroll in WRITING 301: Practicum in Peer Writing Consultation. Upon successful completion of 301, you may be invited to join our staff as a paid consultant. As a member of the staff, you’ll attend staff meetings and consult for pay for a total of roughly 5-10 hours per week.
Summer Internships for Graduating Consultants
The Sweetland Center for Writing seeks applicants for two paid summer internships from mid-May through mid-August. Applicants must be 2017 graduates or seniors in Fall 2017 and have completed Writing 220 or Writing 301. Interns work 15-20 hours per week between 8am and 4:30pm, Monday-Friday, and earn $12/hour.
Interns work closely with each other and Sweetland staff and faculty on several writing center initiatives, which may include but are not limited to:
- visiting classes and campus organizations to promote Sweetland services;
- collaborating on special projects (e.g. audio and video podcasts, text for website, Peer Writing Consultant Program materials, Minor in Writing materials, online writing and tutoring resources, etc.); and
- and other projects dependent on the interns’ specific interests and skills.
Some general office work, such as filing and making copies, may also be required.
Interns should possess excellent oral and written communication skills; be able to multitask, prioritize, think creatively, take initiative, work both independently and collaboratively, and be proactive, innovative, organized, and intellectually curious.
Strong interest in composition studies and writing center work, good design sense, and strong new media skills are required. Experience conducting research is desired. Familiarity with some of the following applications preferred: Adobe Acrobat Professional, Adobe Creative Suite, Google Apps, and iMovie.
How to apply
Deadline to apply: April 3rd 1pm
Selected applicants will be contacted to schedule an interview. All applicants will be notified of our decisions by Friday, April 25, 2017.