Getting Involved with CWiC
Students interested in the practice of speaking well are invited to join CWiC. CWiC offers students opportunities both as speaking advisors and in co-curricular venues, particularly the Emerging Scholar Talks.
Would you like to help other students become
better public speakers
and improve your own speaking skills?
**Become an Advisor!**
For students with interests in oral communication and/or teaching, the speaking advisor program is an excellent chance to study and apply those interests. Potential advisors take a for-credit course (COLL-135 The Art of Speaking: CWiC Speaking Advisor Training), which is only offered spring semester. After successfully completing the course, students serve as paid speaking advisors, working with other undergraduates on their speaking. CWiC works with hundreds of undergraduates every semester and student advisors form the backbone of the program; consequently, potential advisors need to be committed to their work, to speaking and to improving the educational experience at Penn. Note, only Penn UNDERGRADUATE students are eligible to become CWiC Advisors.
An advisor's workload varies, but advisors are required to do the following:
1) CWiC Affiliate Course Assignment
During fall and spring semesters, each advisor is assigned to coach undergraduates enrolled in a CWiC affiliate course. The advisor will attend a class to deliver (usually) a brief speech in which she/he explains what to expect from the advising session. Most weeks the advisor will not work with the affiliate course speakers. But, as the speech assignment approaches, the advisor will need to schedule one-hour advising sessions with the students (15-25) enrolled in the course.
2) Workshops and Presentations
Each advisor teaches (at least) two CWiC workshops per academic year. Advisors have the option of also delivering presentations about CWiC and about public speaking strategies.
Each semester, advisors attend three to four meetings in which topics from class are revisited, problems are addressed, and advisors get to know one another. Advising during a two-hour weekly shift at the Speaking Center is optional.
The Art of Speaking: CWiC Speaking Advisor Training
Dr. Sue Weber
Tuesdays 1:30-4:20 p.m.
Note: The course is offered once a year, each spring semester.
Course Description: This course is designed to equip students with the major tenets of rhetorical studies and peer education necessary to work as a CWiC speaking advisor. The course is a practicum that aims to develop students' abilities as speakers, as critical listeners and as advisors able to help others develop those abilities. In addition to creating and delivering individual presentations, students facilitate workshops and practice advising. During this ABCS course, students will practice their advising skills by coaching and mentoring students at a school in Philadelphia.
Commitment: Apply for admission to this course if you will be available to work as an advisor each semester until you complete your degree. (An exception can be made for one study abroad semester, but you cannot study abroad the fall semester after you take the course.) If you are too busy to make this commitment, then do not apply. Hours vary during the semester, but most advisors work 5-15 hours/week. As a CWiC advisor, you will coach your peers during one-on-one advising sessions and teach workshops.
Qualifications: An interest in listening to peers and offering constructive criticism is key. CWiC Advisors spend most of their time listening and coaching students, not delivering speeches; however, advisors must be willing to be coached by other advisors and the Associate Director. Previous speaking experience is unnecessary. A desire to learn, support others, work as part of a team of advisors, and improve one's own communication skills are necessary. Only Penn UNDERGRADUATE students are eligible. (Seniors are ineligible.)
You do not need to know a CWiC Advisor to apply for the course. But, you should speak with current advisors to ask about the work they do. You should be sure you understand the role of an advisor before taking COLL-135.
Because students who successfully complete the course then work as paid speaking advisors during subsequent semesters, interested students are selected for spring enrollment through an application and interview process.
2015-16 Application Timeline:
- Fall Semester 2015:
- Sat. Nov. 14th —applications due at 11:59 p.m.
- Sun. Nov. 15th-Tues. Nov. 17th—CWiC contacts applicants to schedule interviews
- Wed. Nov. 18th-Sat. Nov. 21st —(30 minute) CWiC Advisors interview invited candidates
- Mon. Dec. 7th—CWiC notifies applicants of decisions
- Fri. Dec. 18th—Deadline for course registration*
If you are interested in becoming an advisor, review this web site. If you have questions, contact Dr. Sue Weber, Associate Director of CWiC at firstname.lastname@example.org or 215.746.3543.