The Write Way to Bring in the School Year

Vanessa Passo, Staff Writer

The lounge of building B is quaint and small; students resign from their daily activities for study breaks, homework sessions or just a quick breather in between the chaos that is college. The hallways remained cluttered as students make their ways to and from classes, the buzz of conversation filling the air. Music from the main lounge can be heard faintly from the upstairs lounge, while smells of coffee and buttery popcorn occupy the noses of students scattered around. Classroom doors are closed while the authoritative voices of lectures linger throughout the air. Despite the clutter of people, sounds and smells, one door among the building B lounge always remains open.

The Write Place.

Room B247 is a hidden gem among the pebbles and rocks of the campus. Open Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Friday, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., the Write Place allows for students to seek solace in finding not only tutoring help, but a comfortable, relaxed environment. All forms of writing can be benefited from such a service: essays, reports, basic skills in English, grammar and punctuation, formatting papers, vocabulary, speech outlines and the list goes on and on.

“Most of our writing consultants teach composition courses- most have Masters, English/Education degrees. We know what kind of assignments students are coming in with for help,” said Scott Vaszily, Director of The Write Place, proudly states.

Vaszily has been around the Elgin Community College Campus for over 20 years, and has been tutoring and a part of The Write Place for over 10. Although the years may have flashed by, the mission of The Write Place has always remained the same.

“Student success is a main focus,” says Vaszily. “And The Write Place is correlated to student success…students who take advantage of their resources.”

One of the many free resources allows for the hectic schedule of assignments students have to be put to ease in the room that is the Write Place. The peaceful silence among the room allows for students to focus and relax. As one walks into the room, they are greeted with bright sunshine coming from the uncovered windows. The light dances around the room, allowing students to feel warmed and welcomed. Pale blue covers the walls, while educational and informative posters are hung from the top of the white board.

“We hope to create a comfortable, informal, relaxed environment [students] are not afraid to come to,” said Vaszily.

“I love it in here,” ECC student Colleen Rodabaugh, 20, shares. “It puts me at ease knowing the help I’m getting is actually valid, and it makes me more confident as a student knowing I’m turning in high quality work.”

“It’s so laid back, I can bring in my coffee and snacks and just work at my own pace, on my own time,” says Rodabaugh.

Another one of the many benefits of the free service; no appointment is necessary. Walk-in’s are highly encouraged, and students are more than welcome to come as often as they would like or need. To much of some students’ surprise, this free service is in the comfort of a normal classroom; no formalities, no arranged seating, no sign-in sheets or any such standards of a formal office.

In typical classroom fashion, tables occupy the space in the heart of the room, while computers align the remaining walls. Here, students have the opportunity to work on their assignments and get one-on-one help.

Many students fail to even realize the existence of such a service the campus offers.

The quaint room of Building B occupies only a handful of students at a time; most of which collect their credits from English Composition, History or Psychology courses. However, many students following such studies have failed to even utilize such a resource.

Psychology major, Anna Potts, 19, states, “I used math tutoring all the time but never actually stopped by The Write Place.”

“Considering I’m still a rookie at this college thing, it’s awesome to know they offer something for students to use to get help when you’re constantly assigned paper after paper when most of your credits are in English and/or psych courses!”

“That’s one thing I really strive to do this year”, Vaszily begins “Is to really get the word out about the service we offer. We send emails, use table tents, put up posters. I don’t think many students know about us.”

In hopes The Write Place expands its popularity among campus, Vaszily also stresses to announce that “[students] pay for this resource by paying their fees…so take advantage!”

His great efforts to get word out about the service holds a deeper meaning to the student’s success more-so the success of The Write Place, itself.

“I don’t want people to leave The Write Place without learning something,” says Vaszily. “I want them to not only leave here being better writers, but just knowing how to do something better.”

The philosophy of Vasily holds true for many other faculty members around campus. The mission and focus of student success is a common denominator among all parts of the school. Start off the semester with success the ‘write’ way by stopping by The Write Place.