Writer's Center

What is the Writer’s Center?

The Writer’s Center is a valuable resource for all U-High students. The Center offers one-on-one assistance to students of all ages and abilities, from 9th graders making the transition into the high school curriculum to seniors seeking help on their college application essays.

We assist students with a variety of writing issues, giving them feedback on individual papers and helping them with any stage of the writing process, including the development and organization of ideas, composition, and revision. Students may bring in writing assignments from any subject area, including creative writing or summer internship applications. Each year the Writers' Center works with more than half the U-High student body. Many of these students come in for help on a regular basis.

The Writers' Center staff does not write students' papers. Instead, we help students become more aware of their writing strengths and weaknesses so that they can improve not only particular assignments but also their overall writing skills.

How do I schedule an appointment?

The Writer’s Center is open during remote learning according to the schedule below. You may book an appointment for the upcoming week beginning Sunday evening. Please do not book more than two appointments during a week.

Time monday (a) tuesday (b) wednesday (c) thursday (a) Friday (B)
8–9
(B: 1st)
1: 8:30–9 1: 8:30–9 1: 8:30–9 1: 8:30–9 1: 8:30–9 
9:15–10:15 
(A: 3rd; B: 2nd)
1: 9–9:30 
1: 9:30–10 
1: 9–9:30
1: 9:30–10 
1: 9–9:30
1: 9:30–10 
1: 9–9:30
1: 9:30–10
1: 9–9:30
1: 9:30–10 
  Advisory   SCW/JCW
1: 10:30–11
  Advisory
11–Noon
(A: 5th; B: 4th)
1: 11–11:30
2: 11:30–Noon
1: 11–11:30
2: 11:30–Noon
1: 11–11:30
2: 11:30–Noon
1: 11–11:30
2: 11:30–Noon
1: 11–11:30
2: 11:30–Noon
12:20–12:55
(Lunch)
1. 12–12:30 1. 12–12:30 1. 12–12:30 1. 12–12:30 1. 12–12:30
1–2
(A: 6th; B: 8th)
1. 1–1:30
2. 1:30–2
1. 1–1:30
2. 1:30–2
1. 1–1:30
2. 1:30–2
1. 1–1:30
2. 1:30–2
1. 1–1:30
2. 1:30–2
2:20–3:20
(A: 7th)
1. 2:15–2:45
2. 2:45–3:15
1. 2:15–2:45
2. 2:45–3:15
1. 2:15–2:45
2. 2:45–3:15
1. 2:15–2:45
2. 2:45–3:15
1. 2:15–2:45
​​​​​​​2. 2:45–3:15
After School 3:15–3:45 3:15–3:45 3:15–3:45 3:15–3:45 3:15–3:45

Note: Appointment sessions are 20 minutes (booked in 30 minute increments to accommodate wrap ups, notes, transitions)

Who works in the Writer’s Center?

The Writers' Center is staffed by:

  •  Rachel Nielsen, Director of the Writer’s Center, is a National Board certified English teacher with over 25 years of experience at the secondary level. Ms. Nielsen joined the U-High’s English department in 2010 and has taught at each level of U-High’s English program.

  • Michael Autrey, Writing Specialist, is a graduate of the University of Chicago and earned his MFA at the Bennington Writing Seminars. He has been working in U-High’s Writer’s Center since 2014. Mr. Autrey is the author of Our Fear, his first full­ length book, published by The Cultural Society in 2013.

With what types of writing can the Writer’s Center help?

We will help with any type of writing, from any of your classes. Students often bring in writing assignments from English, history, or science classes. We also help with college essays, writing for extra-curricular activities, applications or essays for summer internships, and even fiction or poetry you may enjoy writing on your own.

What do I need to know about the summer college essay-writing workshop?

Each year, in collaboration with U-High’s College Counselors and the English department, the Writer’s Center hosts a College Essay Workshop for rising seniors. The workshop is usually held in late August, and students spend three days working on their college essays under the guidance of faculty. Information about the workshop is distributed to families in the spring of a student’s junior year, and registration for this free program happens by the end of that academic year.