By Clare Bermingham, President, CWCA/ACCR
Elections are coming up at the CWCA/ACCR AGM in May, and we have several board positions that will be open. Writing centre people are the best people! And CWCA/ACCR is composed of an awesome group of folks who are invested and passionate about supporting and advancing writing centre work.
Have you considered a position on our board?
I know what you’re thinking…
You’re worried you haven’t been working in writing centres for very long.
Many board members began volunteering with CWCA/ACCR when we were relatively new to writing centre work. It’s a great way to make connections, get support in your role, and become more engaged in research. There’s no such thing as too new! I was brand new when I attended my first CWCA/ACCR conference in 2014, and I was encouraged to stand for election as Secretary only a couple of years later. I had no idea what to expect. I was excited to land within a community of people who were talking about a range of questions and issues, from ideas for training peer tutors to antiracism in writing centres. They were self-reflective, curious, deeply committed to student learning and student experience, and not afraid to share their own learning journeys.
Are you worried you won’t have the time?
The commitment isn’t a huge one, depending on your role and what projects you get engaged in. Think 5-10 hours a month, on average. That’s like 10-20 minutes a day. It’s a cup of coffee, a washroom break, a… well, you get it. And the returns are so worth it.
What do you need as a writing centre professional or researcher or tutor? What support are you missing? What resources do you wish you had a few years ago, or even yesterday? Being a member of the CWCA/ACCR board is an opportunity to create those supports and resources for colleagues and student members across the country. It’s the chance to hear what people need and then find ways to deliver.
From conferences to book discussions, from workshops to panels, the range of projects that board members work on is exciting and fulfilling. I find the work so enriching for my own professional role. I’ve learned a huge amount from colleagues, and I’ve upgraded my skills in meeting facilitation and project organization. Honestly though, it just feels great to know that we’re contributing to the professional experiences of our members, regardless of where they are in their careers or learning journeys. For me, it’s been exciting that the work of the board in the last few years has overlapped with my commitment to equity, antiracism, and decolonization and reconciliation. Having the opportunity to help make space for conversations and actions on these topics and help reduce barriers to participation in the field, is something that I’m very grateful for.
What are you interested in? There will likely be ways to connect these interests to your board work and engage with others interested in similar things.
You’d love to hear what positions are up for election this year?
- Francophone Representative
- Digital Media Chair
- Membership Chair