On Wednesday May 3rd the Writing Center staff invited members of the Molloy community and alumni to an anniversary tea to celebrate a milestone: the Center’s thirty years of continuous service. Many people attended the event in the Kellenberg Reception Room, which had been set up to resemble an inviting tea room, replete with white tablecloths and centerpieces of fresh flowers. Besides the allure of cake, scones, and fresh fruit, many were drawn to the presentation board of photographs and testimonials of students and staff. Some traced the corresponding timeline, recognizing their own part in the Center’s development. From its inception in the eighties, the Writing Center has gone through many changes in both employees and location. The one constant over the years, however, has been the staff’s dedication to serving the ongoing flow of students who make their way through the Center’s door. Good writing remains a fundamental skill for communicating clear ideas and is a prerequisite for success.
In 1987 Roger Dupré took charge of the Center, which went into operation on the lower floor of Kellenberg Hall, between what was then the English Office and the Campus Ministry Office. Roger was largely responsible for developing the Center into an indispensable place for students to get help with their writing. He attended the May 3rd event with his wife and former Center tutor Ann. Surrounded by friends and former colleagues, Roger chatted with past and present Center staff and related stories of the “old” days.
Many who attended the event remembered Richard Kiley, who was hired as the new Director in 1999. By that time, the Center had moved from the first floor of Kellenberg to the first floor of Casey and down the stairs, to what is now referred to by consultants as the “garden level.” Richard was popular with the students, and he worked toward bringing more awareness to the Center’s services before his retirement in 2012.
As more students than ever find their way to the Writing Center, keeping up with the demand for appointments remains a challenge. The new online system, adopted when Pamela Kenley-Meschino took over as the Coordinator, means that students can now make their own appointments; they can also choose between face-to-face or online sessions. In 2014 the first summer writing program for high school students and incoming college freshmen was offered; consultants are currently working on the 2017 program. The busyness of the Center has changed exponentially with time, many dedicated staff members have come and gone, but the services offered remain as vital as ever.