Resources fostering student success

By Erin Jesionowski

Elm Staff Writer


OAS_MarkCooley (1)EDITEDWashington College has academic resources available where students can receive additional help with academic work from other students and obtain the skills they need to succeed.

The Office of Academic Skills is located on the second floor of the Clifton Miller Library and is dedicated to helping students develop the skills needed to achieve academically.

OAS is a starting point for getting help with any academic needs, overseeing academic accommodations, holding weekly success seminars, and offering peer tutoring.

All academic accommodations go through Elizabeth Shirk. Students are able to make an appointment with her online through her profile on the Academic Skills page of the WC website, or by email at Students are also able to access their accommodations portal online at

The success seminars are held in the Sophie Kerr room on the second floor of the library by Hilary Bateman, director of the Office of Academic Skills. Students can find the dates and times for specific seminars under the Success Seminars tab on the Academic Skills page of the WC website. Bateman also sends out email reminders of upcoming seminars.

If seminars do not fit a student’s schedule, or are not enough, individual appointments can be made with an academic skills tutor through the Peer Tutoring tab on the Academic Skills page.

Peer tutoring is one-on-one tutoring with another student who has finished the course with at least a 3.0, received a strong recommendation from a professor in that subject area, and completed a training course.

Senior Kristyn Armstrong is a tutor support coordinator in OAS. Armstrong uses her tutor training to “make success seminars, schedule tutors, communicate Hilary’s messages with the tutors, [and] create academic worksheets,” she said.

The other academic resource centers, the Writing Center and the Quantitative Skills Center, provide more subject-specific help.

The Writing Center serves as a resource for students to develop their writing craft with trained tutors.

Senior Emily Kreider is a tutor at the Writing Center and described its goals.

“At the Writing Center, we are prepared to help students with any stage of the writing process they are in. Whether they want to come in to brainstorm initial ideas or go over the final draft of their paper, we’re ready to help in any way we can,” she said.

“It’s our hope to not only help students produce good writing, but to also help students become good writers. We hope that students will leave tutoring sessions with the tools under their belt to help them with the next writing assignment that comes their way,” Kreider said.

In addition to help writing papers, the Writing Center now offers consulting for oral presentation projects.

The Writing Center is located in Goldstein 106 and is open from 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and Friday 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

The Writing Center has also added weekend and evening hours Monday through Thursday 6:30 p. m. to 8:30 p. m. and Sunday 2:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. These sessions are located in the Kohl Study Room on the second floor of Miller Library.

Writing Center drop-in sessions are available, or students can make an appointment with a specific consultant. Appointments can be made on the Writing Center’s webpage, accessible through the WC website.

The Quantitative Skills Center as a resource for quantitative classes like math, science, business, economics, and psychology. It is located on the ground floor of Miller Library.

The QSC allows students to make a one-on-one appointment with a trained peer tutor. Appointments can be made through the Quantitative Skills Center’s webpage on the WC website.

The QSC offers evening and course-specific drop-in hours, which can be found on their webpage.

Sophomore Tegan McBride is a computer science tutor at the QSC.

“[Students] can get extra help beyond their professors. Sometimes going to your professor might feel slightly intimidating, so having the option to go to another student is helpful,” McBride said.

At WC, everyone has the chance to succeed and do well academically. By utilizing the campus’s academic resources, like the Office of Academic Skills, Writing Center, and Quantitative Skills Center, students will acquire skills that can be used for achievement in the classroom and beyond.

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