Prior to the IWS I started a small Writing Center in 1996, tucked away in another building--just 2 rooms, one with an enormous blank wall. One snowy day in 1998 I painted this mural: a depiction of the Universe incorporating drawings from my 5-year old son and his 5-year-old cousin. (I was later informed that I had vandalized the wall and it was painted over.)

I was fortunate to be given the chance to create and direct the Institute for Writing Studies at St. John's University. We opened in 2006. It's comprised of three units--The First-Year Writing Program, the University Writing Center, and the Writing Across the Curriculum program. You can see photos and find out more about the IWS here. You can also read about transformation from our small Writing Center to the creation of the multifaceted IWS in "Hideaways and Hangouts, Public Squares and Performance Spaces: New Metaphors for Writing Center Design." Creative Approaches to Writing Center Work, eds. Kevin Dvorak and Shanti Bruce. Hampton Press, 2008. More information on our Writing Center can be found here.