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Writer’s Block

6 Aug

By: Sara Goff

As I sit in the lobby of my new apartment complex, using the free wi-fi because I am obviously too poor to afford my own, the reality of my impending student-loan debt is depressing me; it’s not an unfamiliar feeling.  Because that’s just not enough for one night, I am further annoyed that the Center for the Study of Teaching and Writing at Ohio State decided to eliminate Alexis – the best writing instructor I’ve ever had – due to budget cuts in the humanities department. Of course.

I admit: I am the self-proclaimed Chief of the Grammar Police Force.  I pass judgment on people solely based on the quality of their writing—especially instructors!  The bane of my academic existence is when I cringe at a professor’s grammar:

“This person has a PhD,” I will gawk.

“And they corrected my paper to say ‘with regards to,’”…

The narrator in the clip below may very well be quoting from my stream of consciousness:

Much to my exasperation, professional communication isn’t exactly a high priority at this, or any, major public university.  Instead, Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math are all the rage.

It’s not that I don’t think STEM is practical—Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math are crucial to future developments that will [hopefully?] sustain our great green Earth.

I know that, as a research-driven public university, Ohio State relies on STEM programs to maintain a prestigious status among other top research institutions—which results in a plethora of private funding.

However, someone needs to write about what those geniuses are up to!

Technical writers are crucial to the communication of news about developments in every field; otherwise, readers of Science Daily would be left deciphering lab reports…

Again, it’s not that I am against funding for STEM;  but my skills are equally as valuable, and should be treated as such—especially by those in charge of allocating funds to the Center for the Study of Teaching and Writing.

In fact, according to the National Endowment for Humanities:

“One of the myths of our times is that the humanities are good for the soul but irrelevant to the pocketbook and job creation…

We believe, however, that the humanities actually are central to long-term American competitiveness…

In a world where America’s role will continually be tested, the nation cannot afford to ignore the humanities”

I am painfully aware that not everyone cares about grammar as much as I do—which is why I am concerned and frustrated by the recent cutbacks in humanities funding.

Contingent with emerging developments…and despite what mathematicians insist…

“Writing matters in a changing world”

CSTWIIReferences:

http://www.neh.gov

artsandsciences.osu.edu

stemoutreach.osu.edu

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