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Wednesday, August 27, 2003
 
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Nationally recognized project for teachers comes to Appalachia Ohio
Ohio University selected as new site for National Writing Project

ATHENS, Ohio (March 27, 2007) -- Ohio University has received a grant from the National Writing Project to establish the Ohio University Appalachian Writing Project, a program that invites local teachers to participate in summer and year-round programs focused on improving student writing and learning.

The OUAWP will kick off this year with a summer institute for teachers held on campus from June 18 to July 12. Informational materials have been sent to schools and those applications are due April 1. Interviews will take place toward the end of April and the beginning of May.

"We're looking for people who are dedicated to teaching and willing, interested and engaged in understanding how writing is used in classroom for both learning and communication," said Sherri Gradin, professor of English and co-director of the project. "We're also interested in teachers discovering how writing can be transformative to them both professionally and personally."

Participating teachers will earn graduate credit as they study successful classroom strategies, read and discuss research, and improve their knowledge of writing.

"It's an intensive program where we help teachers develop and share effective ways of teaching, especially in teaching others how to write," said Gradin, director of Ohio University's Center for Writing Excellence. "Those that qualify to teach teachers are excellent teachers themselves. They know what their students need to be successful."

The OUAWP will serve teachers and students in the 140 schools of Athens, Gallia, Hocking, Jackson, Lawrence, Meigs, Morgan, Perry, Vinton and Washington counties.

Joining Gradin in leading the local writing project effort is co-director Don Dudding. Dudding is in his 24th year of teaching in Meigs County's Southern High School and is a former recipient of the Teacher of the Year Award from the Ohio Appalachian Center for Higher Education.

Ohio University received a $30,000 matching grant from the National Writing Project to establish the OUAWP.  The grant funds nearly 25 percent of the OUAWP's annual budget of $122,737, with the remaining 75 percent funded by Ohio University.

The National Writing Project, founded in 1974, is a federally funded professional development program with more than 200 sites, including the new site in Athens. 

More information about the OUAWP and summer institute applications are available at www.awp.ohiou.edu.

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Media Contact: Director of the Ohio University Appalachian Writing Project Sherrie Gradin, 740-597-1857 or gradin@ohio.edu, or Coordinator of Media Relations Jessica Stark, 740-597-2938 or starkj@ohio.edu

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