Welcome to Eckerd College! Your ability to write well is one of the most important skills you can have, both for effectiveness in your career and for communicating well with others in your personal life.
Faculty members in all fields expect students to write well, so the most immediate challenge in your first year is to write college-level papers that are clear, coherent, and in the 'language' of the advanced fields you are studying. After all, your lab reports and papers are the primary means for faculty to know your thinking, to hear your distinct voice, and to coach you in the next steps of your learning.
Because of the importance of writing to success at Eckerd College, many students elect a composition course during their freshman year. These courses prepare you for a variety of sophisticated writing tasks that are typical of collegiate and professional work. Your mentor will help you decide the appropriate section of composition - just be sure to ask her or him about this part of your education.
Competency in writing is a graduation requirement. We determine your competency by review of your writing portfolio no later than the fall semester of your junior year. Even though you may have taken college-level writing courses, and you may write effectively, you must submit a portfolio to meet our requirement. Detailed instructions will be given to you by your mentor or you can stop in Foundations Collegium for a copy of the portfolio folder. For now, you need to save all of your college writing, including lab reports and all essay examinations. If you already have papers written elsewhere for college credit, bring them to campus with you.
The Writing Excellence Program can help you with any writing tasks. Composition faculty and trained student consultants work in the Writing Center (SE 103) to assist all writers. All composition courses help you master academic usage, documentation, and computer-assisted writing, learning, and research techniques.
If you have questions, you may contact Dr. Bill Kelly, Director, The Writing Excellence Program, through the Foundations office secretary (727) 864-8860, or firstname.lastname@example.org.