UMass Boston

About Us

Our mission is to serve all writers across the UMB community and to create an equitable, socially, racially, and linguistically just culture of writing throughout campus and in the community. As such, our free services and programming are meant to support writing and writers at any point in the writing process and to provide guidance on the teaching of writing. The links below provide more information about who we are and how we envision our writing center supporting all writers across UMB.

We are committed to providing accessible services. For disability-related accommodations, please contact us at writingcenter@umb.edu.

Work with Us

Are you interested in being an undergraduate or graduate hourly Writing Center consultant? We are hiring! Applications are due Tuesday, April 16 by 5:00pm. 

Submit your application

The Writing Center is now accepting applications for hourly undergraduate and graduate consultants for the 2024-2025 academic year. As a key part of the Writing Center, consultants will work with writers – undergraduate and graduate students from across the university – in 45-minute one-to-one sessions in person and online. These sessions offer support for writing that is tailored to writers’ individual needs, contexts, and backgrounds. This position requires regular in person presence on campus.  

Undergraduate students who are hired will be required to enroll in the English 459/667 "Writing Center Pedagogy, Theory, and Research” course, which meets Tuesdays from 4pm-6:45pm in person in Fall 2024. Graduate students who are hired are encouraged to enroll in English 459/667 "Writing Center Pedagogy, Theory, and Research” in the Fall 2024 semester, but alternate training plans may be made for those not able to take the class or those with previous writing tutoring experience. More information about the job is available below.  

Submit your application via this form.

A complete application will include: 

  • Answers to all questions on the application form 
  • A one-page cover letter 
  • A résumé or CV 
  • A writing sample (around 5 pages for undergraduates and around 10 pages for graduate students).  

 Applications are due by 5:00pm on Tuesday, April 16.  

Applicants who are invited to interview will be notified toward the end of April. Interviews will likely take place during the week of May 13-17. 

If you have questions about the job or the application process, send us an email at writingcenter@umb.edu  

Consultant Position Frequently Asked Questions

What is the day-to-day work of a writing consultant like?

Consultants work in shifts of roughly 1-3 hours, with most consultants working 2-4 days each week and somewhere along 3-10 hours a week. Consultants weekly schedule is set at the start of the semester in collaboration with the administrative team. Because consultants are students first, scheduling works around consultants’ courses. In addition to working with writers who schedule 45-minute appointments, consultants also work with writers on a drop-in basis, conduct informational class visits, and participate in tabling and other events. Consultants also participate in regular professional development and work a modified schedule during finals week. We’re a supportive, collaborative, and anti-racist Writing Center—consultants often support each other in their work and collaborate on various projects and activities.  

Does the job require in-person attendance?

Yes, all Writing Center consultant positions require consultants to work in person. When writers make appointments, they can choose to work in person or online, so consultants must be in the Writing Center during their shifts. We have one online-only shift on Sundays when consultants don’t have to be on campus. Consultants must also attend in-person professional development meetings. This job cannot be done remotely. 

When does the consultant position start?

All consultants must attend a paid, pre-semester orientation—a day-long professional development meeting—that usually takes place the Friday before the fall semester starts. Additional paid training may be required at the start of the semester for graduate consultants who don’t enroll in English 459/667. The Writing Center usually opens the third week of the semester, so the regular weekly schedule will start once the Writing Center opens and go until the last week of classes. Consultants also work a modified schedule during finals week.

What does professional development entail?

New consultants generally enroll in a semester long course (English 459/677) their first semester on the job. This counts as their professional development during their first semester. More information about the course can be found below or by emailing us. Consultants attend a paid, day-long pre-semester orientation before each fall semester begins. After their first semester, consultants attend paid monthly professional development meetings which take place in person on Fridays. These meetings focus on improving consultants’ knowledge of writing center practice (e.g., goal setting, working with writers in the sciences, working with writers with disabilities, etc.). 

Graduate consultants who don’t enroll in the course participate in various professional development activities. These include the pre-semester orientation each fall, early-semester professional development meetings, reading scholarship, and monthly professional development meetings.  

 In addition, consultants are observed to improve their practice and have opportunities to participate in paid special projects and research and to attend conferences and other events for professional development purposes. 

What are the required qualifications for the position?

To be eligible to work with us, you must be an enrolled undergraduate or graduate student in good academic standing at UMB. Our undergraduate and graduate-level consultants can come from any major, program, or college at UMB. Since writing happens across the curriculum, we welcome applicants from non-humanities disciplines in addition to those in the humanities. We seek to hire students who are passionate about supporting writers with a variety of lived experiences and excited to contribute to an encouraging and anti-racist community. Students with federal work-study are welcome to apply for this position.  

To maintain your position with the Writing Center after you’ve been hired, you must remain in good academic standing and be making progress toward graduation. Consultants must work in person, be willing to work with diverse students, and enroll in English 459/667 and/or participate in training and professional development.  

What are the application requirements and when is the deadline?

The deadline and application requirements might vary from year to year and according to whether an applicant is an undergraduate or graduate student. This page will list the application requirements and the deadline when our application window is open. We typically hire in the spring semester and new consultants begin their position in the fall semester. We will also announce our hiring on our socials, so be sure to follow us for up-to-date information.  

What should I write about in my cover letter?

We’re interested in why you want to work at the Writing Center and in learning about some of your past experiences that have prepared you to work with others on their writing. If you have past teaching experience, we’d love to hear how you might connect it to your work in the Writing Center. Even if you don’t have direct tutoring or teaching experience, we use cover letters to gain insight into who you are and some of the skills you might have or develop in the Writing Center. It’s okay if your cover letter ends up being a bit shorter or longer than we require; what’s most important is that you give us enough detail to gain a sense of how you might fit into our community, what you value, and why you’re interested in this position.  

What kind of writing sample should I provide?

We’re asking for writing samples that show some of your academic interests and your writing skills. Submit something that you’re proud of and that shows your critical writing and thinking skills. We may also use your writing sample to talk about your writing process and how you approach writing during the interview if you move to that stage.  

If you’re an advanced undergraduate or a graduate student, we’ll accept a slightly longer writing sample. Alternatively, you can provide us with some context and only give us an excerpt from a larger text.  

How much does the Consultant position pay?

Our payrate may vary from year to year. Generally, undergraduate consultants start at $15.75 per hour and graduate consultants start at $20 per hour. 

I’m not in English, can I still apply?

Definitely! We hire undergraduate and graduate students from across campus and from all disciplines. We ask that anyone who applies is generally interested in learning about writing, the teaching of writing, and how best to support student writers. We provide training and on-going professional development for all our consultants.  

What is English 459/667 "Writing Center Pedagogy, Theory, and Research”?

This is an upper-level course for undergraduate and graduate students who work at the Writing Center. This hands-on and collaborative course is designed to teach students about writing center pedagogy and theory and to prepare them to work at the Writing Center. It also provides opportunities for students to learn about and potentially engage in writing center research.  

I’ve worked in a Writing Center before. Do I still need to take the course and attend professional development events?

Whether you take the course depends on a number of factors. If you’re hired and have taken a writing center course or worked in a writing center previously, you’ll work with members of the administrative team to decide whether or not you’ll take the course. All consultants, including those with prior writing center experience, are required to attend all professional development meetings and events 

When is the Writing Center open? Do consultants work during academic breaks?

The Writing Center is only open when the university is open. The Writing Center generally opens the third week of each fall and spring semester and is open during part of the summer semester. Consultants don’t work over Thanksgiving, spring, or winter breaks. When there is a Monday holiday, the Writing Center is also closed on the Sunday preceding it. 

Do I need to have completed ENGL 101 and ENGL 102 to apply to be a consultant?

To be eligible for this position, undergraduate students must have taken English 101 or fulfilled this requirement. We don’t require potential applicants to have taken English 102 before applying to this position, but having taken the course can better prepare you for the position. There are no course requirements for graduate applicants.  

Writing Center

Main location: Campus Center, First Floor, Room 1300
Boston, MA 02125 USA
617.287.6753
writingcenter@umb.edu

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