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Office of Vice President and
Chief of Staff
Florida Gulf Coast University
10501 FGCU Blvd S.
Fort Myers, FL. 33965-6565

Phone: (239) 590-1006
Fax:     (239) 590-1066

Press Release


Annual Summer Institute Sharpens Area Teachers' Writing, Teaching Techniques

FORT MYERS, FL - Successful teachers of writing from all levels and disciplines - including three from Germany this year - are participating in the annual four-week National Writing Project’s Summer Institute June 9 through July 3 at Florida Gulf Cost University to demonstrate their best practices and share classroom triumphs. Area teachers are noting the effectiveness of the powerful program, which is gaining popularity.

“I have waited years to become a participant in the National Writing Project, knowing that my experiences would positively impact my teaching,” Carol Smith of The Sanibel School said.

“I did not know, however, that those experiences would also profoundly impact my spirit - my continued growth and search for self. The National Writing Project has served as a battery-replacement and energized me to keep on keeping on with the goal of not only becoming the best teacher I can be but also a better seeker of personal truth and inner voice.”

The Summer Institute, which is by invitation only and limited to 20 participants, helps broaden teachers’ grounds through examination of writing theory and research, in addition to giving teachers an opportunity to commit themselves to the writing process by practicing writing and using peer review so that they can effectively teach the concept to other teachers. Participants gain three hours of graduate credit.

Associate professor in Educational Studies Patricia Wachholz stressed the importance of the program as a means of having teachers swap ideas and interests in efforts to excite their own students about learning.

“This is really important work that teachers are doing on our campus so they can become better teachers of writing and teaching leaders within their own school communities. Too many people think that teachers spend all their summer vacationing. I can tell you that these teachers are working very hard to be the best they can be for their students, their colleagues, and their schools.”

The FGCU National Writing Project, located in the College of Education, is a grant-funded partnership and cooperative effort between FGCU and the area schools of Southwest Florida. It is an affiliate of the National Writing Project, a collaborative university-school staff development program to improve the teaching and learning of writing in the nation’s classrooms.

The National Writing Project’s mission is to “improve the teaching of writing and improve learning in the nation’s schools. Through its professional development model, the National Writing Project recognizes the primary importance of teacher knowledge, expertise, and leadership.”

Begun in 1973 as the Bay Area Writing Project at the University of California at Berkeley, the National Writing Project has grown into an international network of projects reaching approximately 83,000 teachers a year.

For more information, contact Wachholz at (239) 590-7808, , or visit the FGCU National Writing Project website at .

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