Faculty gathered in the O’Shaughnessy-Frey Library on Wednesday to celebrate Chris Anson, who – along with program director Erika Scheurer – has developed and led St. Thomas’ Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) seminars since 2009.
This June’s cohort will be Anson’s final; Scheurer will lead all future cohorts. Together the two have ushered more than 400 St. Thomas faculty through the program, which puts writing and pedagogical development at the forefront of courses across all disciplines. It is the most far-reaching faculty development initiative ever implemented at St. Thomas.
“There is no place I’ve encountered where faculty are so dedicated to their students and learning,” said Anson, who as a national leader of WAC has worked with more than 200 universities and colleges. “Everywhere I go I tell people about St. Thomas; you have no idea how famous you are. … This is a unique program; there’s nothing like this in the world.”
Faculty on hand to celebrate Anson ranged from the first cohort in June 2009 to the current one, which also moves St. Thomas faculty past the 50 percent mark for program participation. Scheurer thanked many people – including all faculty who have participated – as part of the celebration of Anson’s contributions to St. Thomas’ educators.
“I can’t imagine what WAC at St. Thomas would be without you,” Scheurer told Anson.
Faculty from every school and department at St. Thomas have taken part in WAC, which became part of the university’s core curriculum in 2015.
St. Thomas’ WAC courses are either writing intensive, writing to learn, or writing in the discipline; nearly 1,700 course sections have been taught since 2009.