On October 20th, the University Center for Writing-based Learning celebrated the National Day on Writing on both the Lincoln Park and Loop campuses. The event was a huge success, with dozens of students, professors, and others stopping by to fill out posters or speak to us on camera about why they write.
And, unlike experiences I have had sitting at booths for other campus organizations, it was not at all difficult for us to get people to participate! Participants were eager to share their diverse experiences with writing.
When asked who/what “writers are,” responses varied from “young adults,” to “absurd,” and to “Jing who loves green.” And the reasons why the participants wrote ranged from the simple need to communicate to the need to uncover hidden truths “in order to bring enlightenment.” The most common forms of writing were research papers, poetry, journaling, and, of course, Facebook.
I was also able to talk with a few professors who were very interested in reading the posters. One of them told me that she found the posters fascinating and useful, explaining that knowing what inspires students to write will help her assign better, more compelling writing assignments.
This year, the United States Senate officially designated October 20th as the National Day on Writing. The nationwide event was first organized by the National Council for Teachers of English in 2009, and on DePaul’s campus, the event is organized by the UCWbL’s Outreach Team.