YELLOW SPRINGS — The Antioch Writers’ Workshop (AWW) has entered into a new partnership with the University of Dayton that will allow the organization to attract more creative writing students from across the region for its programs, provide economical campus housing for summer participants and expand its reach.
Effective March 2017, the workshop will maintain an office in the University of Dayton’s department of English and will hold its spring and summer programs on the residential campus. AWW offers creative writing workshops, seminars and retreats year-round to poetry, fiction and nonfiction writers in the region and from throughout the United States.
Now known as the Antioch Writers’ Workshop at the University of Dayton, the organization, which held programs in partnership with Antioch University Midwest from 2009-2016, will maintain its independent nonprofit status and will continue to hold its schedule of programs without interruption. The University of Dayton is also home to the popular biennial Erma Bombeck Writerss Workshop, the nation’s only workshop devoted to humor and human interest writing. AWW’s new affiliation with UD makes it home to two nationally renowned workshops for professional writers and creative writing and communication students.
“Our board and staff continually explore partnerships with many institutions of higher learning, as well as other artistic groups,” said Kate Geiselman, acting president of AWW’s board of directors. “When the possibility of working closely with the University of Dayton arose, we recognized increased opportunities for serving the writing community in the Dayton region and beyond. The board agreed we’d be remiss not to explore developing a partnership with UD.”
The workshop’s board held numerous exploratory discussions and voted unanimously to approve the transition.
“The English Department is delighted to partner with the Antioch Writers’ Workshop,” says Andrew Slade, chair of University of Dayton’s department of English. “We share the workshop’s commitment to cultivating and celebrating writers and writing; we do that in a spirit of collaboration and community. Our partnership builds on our mutual strengths and our commitment to doing that work here in the greater Miami Valley. We look forward to the work together.”
The workshop board and the current staff, executive director Sharon Short and assistant director Cyndi Pauwels, will remain intact as part of the partnership.
“I’ve been part of the workshop since 1990,” Short said. “First I was a participant, then a summer instructor and finally, I’ve served as director since 2009. I’ve always loved the workshop’s mission to support the community of writers, wherever they may be geographically or in their individual writing lives. I’m excited by this opportunity because it will allow the workshop to expand and deepen that mission’s reach.”
The University of Dayton’s department of English plans to develop a for-credit creative writing course incorporating the workshop’s summer program that will be available to all students who attend universities and colleges in the Southwestern Council for Higher Education.
“We’re so grateful to have had the support of Antioch University Midwest since 2009,” Geiselman said. “We’ve also always honored our roots at Antioch College — and its principles of diversity, community and inclusivity — in all our decisions about programming and partnerships. The workshop’s board believes this new endeavor with the University of Dayton will enable us to build on those principles going forward. We’re pleased to have the good will of both institutions and are already discussing ways we can continue to work collaboratively with both in the future.”
AWW has several upcoming programs scheduled:
– A LitSalon with fantasy, horror and sci-fi writer Tim Waggoner will be held 4-7 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 12.
– AWW’s annual spring seminar, “How to Get the Most Out of Your Writing Life,” will be held 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Saturday, March 25 at the University of Dayton.
– The 2017 annual summer program will be held at the University of Dayton July 8-14. Award-winning, best-selling science fiction author John Scalzi will be the keynote speaker, and faculty includes well-regarded authors from the Dayton area and across the country.
Advance registration is required and available online for AWW programs.
Initiated in 1986 as a summer workshop at Antioch College in Yellow Springs, AWW became a 501(c)3 nonprofit in 1991 and has remained so ever since, holding summer programs at various locations in Yellow Springs, as well as other programs at Books & Co. at The Greene in Beavercreek and retreats in various locations throughout Ohio.
Story courtesy of the Antioch Writers’ Workshop.