University of Minnesota
center for writing

Center for Writing alumni—Alex Werndli

read another alum's response

11 Questions for Center for Writing Alums

  • Your name: Alex Werndli
  • Your email:
  • When did you work with us? 2017-2018
  • What was your role? writing consultant, front desk/computer lab attendant
  • What education and/or occupation(s) have you pursued since working with us? I've been teaching EFL in Morocco since graduating.

Reflections on your center experience

  • Did your work with us influence your educational or occupational choices? If so, how? Absolutely. Consulting lead me to want more experience working with students and, thus, to teaching. I'm also planning to attend Oregon State's Rhetoric and Writing program this fall to move toward writing pedagogy specifically, following an interest for which SWS served as the chief incubator.
  • What are the most significant abilities, values, or skills that you developed in your work with us? I think the skills I developed in SWS are twofold: analytic and communicative. Thinking about writing has made me far more self-reflective and personally committed to revision, both in writing and teaching. Consulting sharpened my analytical skills by introducing me to a variety of writing styles and forcing me to make quick diagnoses. My analysis was, however, only meaningful insofar as I could communicate it to the writer for their use, and thus consulting proved an invaluable lesson in how to provide effective feedback.
  • In your personal and professional life today, how do you find yourself using what you learned from working with us? I analyze and give feedback daily as a teacher. As for writing, specifically, I started an Academic Writing Workshop in my city. In this group, students voluntarily spend their Friday evenings discussing writing conventions and producing/revising academic papers in order to sharpen their writing skills. Switching from the collaborative role of consultant to evaluative one of a teacher has been tricky for me, and this club lets me slide back toward more of a consulting dynamic.
  • Anything else you want to tell us and your fellow Center alums? Just a thank you for the impact you folks have had on my life course and perspective.