by Grace Hatton, Reverb Editor
“We don’t judge,” says senior Ilinca Popescu of the Warren Wilson Writing Center. “The Writing Center is a place where your peers want to help you produce the best writing possible.” Indeed many students can attest to the fact that the Writing Center is an invaluable resource on campus and an essential part of what makes the crew so effective is their eleven nurturing peer tutors. One of these eleven peer tutors, Popescu, was recently awarded the title of Tutor of the Year by the North Carolina Writing Center Network.
Popescu is a double major in Creative Writing and Gender & Women’s Studies and she has been a peer tutor at the Writing Center for three semesters. Before joining the Writing Center Popescu spent time on Dining crew and on the EMPOWER crew. She was also a Student Caucus Co-Convener for a year.
Despite having such a varied work experience at Wilson, Popescu seems to have found a true home at the Writing Center that allows her to flex her tutoring skills.
“The best thing about tutoring and the Writing Center is how challenging the work is, and the crew culture that our supervisor, Julie Wilson, creates in response,” said Popescu. “The Writing Center tutors never stop learning: they collaborate on sessions, research their own tip sheets, attend conferences, and talk about grammar during crew meetings.”
The Writing Center crew supervisor Wilson nominated Popescu for the award.
“In her three semesters as a peer tutor in the Warren Wilson Writing Center, Ilinca has emerged as a quiet leader who blends compassion with tough critique in her interactions with co-workers, faculty, campus writers, and community writers,” said Wilson of Popescu’s tutoring talents.
At first Popescu was unaware she was being nominated for the award.
“Julie tried to keep it a secret, but she’s bad at lying,” said Popescu. “She needed to send the committee my resume along with her nomination letter, so she asked for my resume for a believable reason but then just gave up and told me the truth.”
Popescu was presented with the award at the recent conference of the North Carolina Writing Center Network in Greensboro that members of the Writing Center crew attended. Crew supervisor Wilson is pleased that Popescu’s talents have been recognized on a state level and Popescu is equally elated by the news.
“Shockingly, it feels really good to be named tutor of the year,” said Popescu. “I spend a lot of time worrying about what I could be doing better, so it’s surprising and sometimes unbelievable to be receiving so much praise and validation.”
Popescu plans to earn an MFA in Creative Writing after her graduation from Wilson and hopes to work as an ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) tutor beyond her post grad education.