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ASC Graduate: William Christy

Former student employees for NC State’s Academic Success Center share their experiences working within the program and how it helped prepare them for success after graduation.

William Christy
William Christy

The Academic Success Center (ASC) regularly hires tutors and academic peer mentors as well as writing consultants for its undergraduate and graduate writing centers. Both positions are on-campus, paid opportunities for students who enjoy helping their peers be academically successful.

To give a better idea of what it’s like being a student worker in the ASC, we spoke with some alumni who worked there during their time at NC State.

William Christy, M.A. English ‘19, started working as a graduate writing consultant. In that role, he worked with graduate students, guiding them through the higher-order and lower-order concerns of the writing process of their dissertations, theses, articles, abstracts, presentations, resumes, cover letters, and personal statements.

Here is what he had to say:

What did you enjoy most and what did you gain from your experience with the ASC?

The answer to this question is twofold: I enjoyed working with tutees from various cultural backgrounds and academic disciplines. My experience at the ASC allowed me to learn about the fascinating research that a portion of the graduate student body of NCSU was working on. I especially enjoyed working with returning tutees, as this experience gave me more opportunities to develop rapport with them, and it solidified my confidence in the world of academic support. Their consistent presence made me feel like my work mattered and that they trusted my advice.

Equally important during my time at the ASC was the training and one-on-one consultations with my supervisor, Dr. Wendy VanDellon. As a supervisor, she is second to none. While working with her for 11 months, I visited her office to discuss ways I could improve in my role. She gave me valuable wisdom on how to be an active listener, how to practice assertiveness, especially with regard to managing my time in a tutoring session, and how to incorporate multiple resources, such as writing handouts and the whiteboard, when explaining concepts of writing. Her patience and guidance were an invaluable treasure to me as a writing consultant, and I incorporate these qualities in my current role. 

What are you doing now, and what transferable skills from your job with the ASC have helped you in your current work?

Currently, I work as a learning specialist and tutor coordinator at Meredith College, an Adjunct Instructor of English at William Peace University, and a Bookkeeper at Bridge II Sports. One skill I transferred to all three jobs is the importance of building an effective rapport with every individual I work with. 

Regarding my roles at Meredith College, I applied patience and a growth mindset, which have guided me in my goal to help my tutors and students grow as successful individuals not only in college, but in their future professional goals as well.   

One skill I transferred from the ASC to my work at William Peace University is the importance of understanding that every student learns differently. Just as a writing consultant needs to meet their tutees where they are in the writing process for a session to be successful, so too must a teacher understand that their students come from a variety of cultural and educational backgrounds and, thusly, meet the students where they are in order for the students to be successful.    

What other perks or advantages did you enjoy from your work at the ASC?

Giving and receiving peer feedback was one of the most unique and valuable advantages of working at the ASC. This practice not only allowed my colleagues and me the opportunity to assess our strengths and areas of improvement, but it also provided us with the chance to build rapport with each other which, in turn, helped us learn from and trust one another. I have not encountered this practice before or since, and it is a practice that all paraprofessionals of academic support can benefit from. 

What advice would you give students who are considering applying to work for the ASC?

Keep a growth mindset, as it helps you not only in your work at the ASC, but also in your classes and professional aspirations. A growth mindset keeps an individual humble, as it pushes you to learn more. A growth mindset turns a good tutor into a great tutor, and a paraprofessional into a professional.  

If you are a current student interested in working as a tutor, peer mentor or writing consultant within the Academic Success Center, please apply here.