An ever-stimulating workplace where I found tremendous fulfillment in not only helping students to shape and improve their academic papers, but also personal essays for law, medical and divinity schools.
My hours were different each day, as I was also working in the same capacity at Yeshiva University and Grace Church School (also in New York City). I learned patience and the necessary art of close listening, as many of my students were international. This close listening enabled me to form the right questions about their rhetorical goals, and thus ensure that their meaning was effectively communicated.
The workplace culture at Columbia consisted of the nicest and most intelligent people I have ever known. As the school itself is a pressure cooker, the Writing Center was a place to not only improve writing and understand assignments, but also served as an oasis to mitigate the stress, anxiety and competitiveness the students were under.
The hardest part of the job was working with students in the sciences. Being a humanities person myself, I had to formulate strategies to understand the necessary language which conformed to their disciplines.
The most enjoyable part of the job was being part of a wonderful, supportive community; of making a difference in students' lives and learning so much myself.
Great culture, people and atmosphere.
Frustration at shortness of tutoring sessions, expense of living in NYC necessitating a move upstate.