The Sweetland Peer Writing Consultant Program provides undergraduate students from across the University with an opportunity to assist fellow U-M undergrads with their writing. Sweetland-trained peer writing consultants offer traditional face-to-face consulting at our main Peer Writing Center (Shapiro Undergraduate Library 2160) and satellite offices, as well as online consulting using Google Meet. Consultants operate according to the Peer Writing Consultant Program Mission Statement.
Applications are accepted once a year in the Fall term. Accepted students enroll in Writing 300: Seminar in Peer Writing Consultation the following Winter which trains them to become theoretically informed and well-practiced Peer Writing Consultants. Students who excel in Writing 300 are invited to join the Peer Writing Consultant Program and enroll in WRITING 301: Practicum in Peer Writing Consultation. After completing 301, students may be asked to continue on as paid consultants. The starting pay rate for paid consultants is $15/hr.
How to Become a Consultant
The Peer Writing Consultant Program is an excellent way for undergraduate students from across the University to get involved in consulting with their peers about written communication. Becoming a writing consultant gives you the opportunity to work with others on their writing, enjoying conversations about interesting topics, helping to solve writing challenges, and supporting effective writing processes. Once writing consultants enter the job market or go to graduate school, many of them find that the program has given them important experience relating to people, working collaboratively, and engaging in rigorous thinking.
There are two ways to enter the program:
Please note: Students must have completed a first-year college writing course in order to apply. Students may also apply if they obtained first-year college writing exemption for credits already earned when they enrolled at U-M.
1. Receive a nomination to apply
You may be nominated to apply by a university faculty or staff member, an employer, or a recent high school teacher (not related to you) who is familiar with your interpersonal skills, dependability, values, and approach to learning and growth. If they're familiar with your writing skills too, that's a bonus. Each fall and winter term, Sweetland emails faculty across campus to ask them to nominate students for the program. When you are nominated, you will receive an email from Sweetland, inviting you to apply to the Peer Writing Consultant Program. The application includes writing an essay and submitting an academic writing sample from a University of Michigan course.
2. Apply directly by self-nomination
You may also self-nominate by directly applying once the application opens each October. If you’re self-nominating, the application will prompt you to enter a required reference who is a university faculty or staff member, an employer, or a recent high school teacher (not related to you) who is familiar with your interpersonal skills, dependability, values, and approach to learning and growth. If they’re familiar with your writing skills too, that’s a bonus.
How to Apply
(Directions are the same, whether you’re nominated or self-nominating): The application includes writing an essay and submitting an academic writing sample from a University of Michigan course. As part of your application, you must confirm that you’ve been nominated or provide an email and phone number at which an appropriate reference may be contacted.
The Winter 2024 application deadline TBA (October 2023). The application will be posted here.
Transfer Students with previous Writing Center experience:
Transfer students who have worked at a Writing Center at their previous institution are encouraged to join the Peer Writing Consultant Program! The first step is to complete this form which will help us evaluate if the training course that you have previously taken is equivalent to the U-M-Ann Arbor Peer Writing Center training course, Writing 300. A team of Sweetland faculty and staff will review your submitted materials and will let you know about the status of your petition within 3 weeks of submission. Students whose petitions are accepted are expected to enroll in the practicum course Writing 301, during which they will get to know their fellow Peer Tutors, reflect on their experiences while consulting with students and earning pay for their efforts in the Sweetland Peer Writing Center.
Upcoming Info Sessions
If you are interested in learning more about the Sweetland Peer Writing Consultant Program from current consultants, or have questions about the application process, you can attend a PWCP Virtual Information Session hosted on Zoom. These sessions are held a few weeks prior to the application deadline.
After submitting your application materials
Completed applications are reviewed by Sweetland's faculty, and top applicants are invited to enroll in WRITING 300: Seminar in Peer Writing Consultation, a one-semester, three-credit ULWR course taught in Fall and Winter each year.
If you excel in all aspects of WRITING 300, and we have programmatic need for new consultants, you will be invited to join the Peer Writing Consultant Program.
At that point, you will enroll in a one-semester, one-credit course, WRITING 301: Practicum in Peer Writing Consultation and begin consulting for pay in the PWC. WRITING 301 meets W 4:00 - 5:00 PM, and required staff meetings are held twice monthly, in addition to occasional retreat events each semester. Consulting schedules will consist of a minimum of 7-8 hours per week during the school year.
Pay starts at $15/hr with standardized pay increases after hours-of-experience milestones. Mentoring and outreach opportunities are also provided.
Not ready to apply yet?
Sign up on our Peer Writing Consultant Program Info email list to receive updates about future application deadlines and opportunities to talk to students in the program.
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