Joining the Collaborative for Multilingual Writing and Research this past winter quarter has helped me achieve my professional, personal, and academic goals. More than that, it’s also been a great way for me to foster a sense of community during my time at the UCWbL, something that was definitely difficult during my first two years at DePaul. Now that the year has come to a close, I’ve reflected on some of my most memorable experiences on the team, and how difficult it was to say goodbye to graduating CMWR members like Micki B., Emma R., Jenn R., and Kate O.
For both winter and spring quarters, I helped plan CMWR activities with Mark L. and Kate O. and attended our event English Café in the Loop, on Tuesdays at 3. In English Café, We discuss specific aspects of English and give English Language Learners a comfortable place to talk about anything related to language that they have questions about. At one point, I was able to read one of my favorite children’s books, Amelia Bedelia, when we discussed idioms. (The only thing missing was her Lemon Meringue pie.) I also had the pleasure of attending a few of our Conversation and Culture events on Friday, where the conversations are similar to those in English Café but are more focused on a specific aspect of culture. One of my favorite things about these events is that they open up conversations for our participants to share their own cultural values and experiences. It’s been great learning from participants who have shared their experiences from countries across the globe.
Beyond these weekly recurring events, I also joined the CMWR on quarterly adventures, including our quarterly Walk and Talk and shared meals together at the potluck. One of our participants is from Italy, and she recommended that we walk to Eataly and talk over various snacks. Over our shared gelato, focaccia, and pizza we talked about how different swear words hold different status in our respective languages. At the potluck, I shared some of my homemade hummus and peanut butter, but, more importantly, got to eat Micki’s cookie dip. And let’s be real, saying goodbye to cookie dip was equally as hard as saying good-bye to Micki (which she’s not allowed to be offended by because that’s really a compliment to her).
Thanks for a great year CMWR! It’s been great facilitating English acquisition for writers, while learning about all of our participants’ diverse backgrounds. It’s also been great getting to know the fabulous, friendly, and sassy team. Thanks for collaborating <3