Updates in Professional Writing and Technical Communication
By David Toomey | Monday, March 2, 2015
By David Toomey
Monday, March 2, 2015
The department’s program in Professional Writing and Technical Communication (PWTC) finished off a strong year last spring with another stellar list of job placements. We expect to have another excellent crop of graduates on the market this spring and anticipate similar success.
Graduate student Jessica Ouellette continued duties as the program’s teaching assistant, again taking on a section of Introduction to Professional Writing and the sole section of Advanced Software and Professional writing both last spring and this spring. Her teaching received accolades from all around, with students in both courses praising her dedication, enthusiasm and general pedagogical skill. Professor Janine Solberg and I count ourselves very fortunate to have her aboard.
Jessica was also instrumental in an exciting new initiative. In summer 2014, she taught an online version of Introduction to Professional Writing through the Office of Continuing and Professional Education. This was a program first, and we expect to offer this again this upcoming summer.
Jessica’s predecessor in the teaching assistant position was Christian Pulver. Many of you will be happy to learn that Christian has been hired as a visiting professor in the Department of Writing Studies, Rhetoric, and Composition at Roger Williams University. Congratulations, Christian!
Meanwhile, as in all years, Janine and I worked to ensure that the program keeps pace with developments in information design and related fields. We are indebted to our grads, now numbering nearly 300, with whom we consult regularly for advice on such matters. Several droogs returned to Amherst to address students in our capstone course, providing those students with an up-to-the-minute sense of workplace culture and a view into their own possible futures. As per tradition, the good Professor John Nelson also made a guest appearance. The PWTC reunion again took place at his beautiful home, and all enjoyed stories and laughs on a beautiful Amherst-in-May afternoon. I am grateful to John for his continued presence in the program.
Onward to placements. All in all, it was another good year. As of early October, all but a few newly-minted graduates are employed full-time, and we are confident that those remaining will find safe harbor soon.
Congratulations to all!
2014 PWTC Graduate Placements
Beth Codey, development associate of individual giving and special events, The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey
Kate DuBois, technical writer, Brooks Automation
Nick Evelson, contract technical writer, Hitachi Data Systems
Michelle Grenier, technical writer, Homesite Insurance, Boston
Rachel Halpern, user experience copywriter, athenahealth, Watertown
Alex-Joseph Lieskau, information developer, IBM
Kayla O’Neill, technical writer, RSA The Security Division of EMC
Colin MacDonald, technical writer, RAMP Holdings, Inc.
Chris Martin, technical writer, eRPortal, West Springfield
Victor Ng, technical writer, Mitrend, Marlborough, MA
Scott Rosenberg, technical writer, NetNumber, Newton, Massachusetts
Andreanna Stech, technical writer, Casenet, LLC, Boston