PWPA Fall 2017 Conference Features Michael Zerbe and “The Rhetoric of DNA”

Justin Everett and Christina Haganu-Bresch of the University of the Sciences graciously hosted our fall gathering, with an outstanding presentation by Mike Zerbe on the DNA of Rhetoric, and a great workshop led by Justin and Cristina on their exciting initiative to build effective writing feedback into their STEM courses.

After a welcome from of University of the Sciences President, Dr. Paul Katz, members enjoyed lunch while Michael Zerbe, Associate Professor at the York College of Pennsylvania, gave a lecture on “The Rhetoric of DNA.” He brought us through the composition of DNA, the grammar of CRISPRs, and the ethical implications of manipulating DNA.

After lunch, Justin Everett and Cristina Haganu-Bresch (USciences) presented their innovative approach to integrating writing with STEM courses and used break-out groups to explore how writing programs can work with STEM faculty to facilitate better student writing.

The Conference ended with a new–and well-received–genre for the PWPA sessions: Lightning Talks (2-5 minute encapsulations of research, teaching, or administrative insights):

  •  Jaime Longo, LaSalle University,  “Race and Student Voices: Encouraging Academic and Self-Sponsored Writing on Your Campus.”
  • Liz Kimball, Drew University, “Linguistic Diversity in Early National Philadelphia”
  • Julie Malsbury, University of the Sciences, “Reading about Writers vs Writing about Writing: An Approach to Teaching Writing Process”
  • Michael Fotos, Rowan University, “Grammar and Trans Inclusion”
  • Jacqui Sadashige, University of Pennsylvania, “From Agriculture to Activism: Tracking Animalsin Undergraduate Writing”
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