Home » Tis the season to meet Holly, fa-la-la!!

Tis the season to meet Holly, fa-la-la!!

Holly Logsdon is a senior pursuing an English degree, majoring in creative writing with a minor in professional writing. In addition to being a non-traditional student, Holly works at the Office of Student Financial Assistance, and is an intern for Dr. Rob Hale working with him on the STEPS Program. She spoke with me about the experiences she’s had as an intern and her perspective as a non-traditional student.

Jacky Killian: What does it mean to be an English major to you?

Holly Logsdon: I love being an English major because we explore literature, language, and writing from so many angles. We’re engaged learners, making connections between the study of English, our communities, and our world.

Jacky: Why are you in your selected major?

Holly Logsdon, WKU student extraordinaire

Holly Logsdon, WKU student extraordinaire

Holly: I’m a Creative Writing major because I love language. Words are powerful and persuasive, tender and terrifying. Writing challenges me to find just the right words to connect with an audience and leave an impression.

Jacky: What is the STEPS program?

Holly: STEPS stands for Students Teaching English Paper Strategies. STEPS is a web site designed to help students write good papers about literature. This site is constructed for students, by students, and provides a doable process for analyzing literature and writing about it. It’s a wonderful resource for college students and also high school students who are learning to analyze literature.

STEPS helps students identify literary devices, determine the themes of literary texts, develop thesis statements, and produce successful essays. The site is filled with sample essays, peer reviews, and processing notes for each step. You can actually see the writing process unfold, read instructor feedback, and watch each essay transform into an effective literary analysis. We’ve also included a glossary of literary terms with examples from various works and links to additional writing resources. The STEPS web site is www.writingaboutliterature.com. I encourage everyone to visit the site and let us know what you think.

Screenshot of the STEPS Website

Screenshot of the STEPS Website

Jacky: How did you get involved with STEPS?

Holly: Dr. Rob Hale heads up the STEPS program, which is offered as an internship for course credit.  As the STEPS program intern this semester, I’ve had the opportunity to work with Dr. Hale and develop additional site content. Like previous interns, I personally went through the STEPS process and shared the evolution of my essay on the web site. I’m also involved in marketing STEPS through our WKU English faculty, college Writing Centers, and social media, so students and teachers can take advantage of this resource.

Jacky: What is the most difficult part about working on the STEPS program?

Holly: As an English major, I felt pretty comfortable with the literary aspect of the STEPS program internship. But the marketing component was completely new for me. Dr. Hale and I meet weekly to discuss marketing strategies in light of our objectives for the program. He and several members of the English faculty have provided terrific resources to help me spread the word about STEPS. Dr. Angela Jones also facilitates a Blackboard forum for interns, where we exchange ideas and work through challenges. So there’s a great support system when you encounter difficulties.

Jacky: How has your status as a nontraditional student affected your time here at WKU?

Holly: Well, I’m married with two children and a full-time job. So when I considered pursuing my degree, it was a serious decision. On one hand, I wish I had earned my degree before starting a family, but there are benefits to being an older student. I have self-discipline and focus that I lacked in my early twenties. Knowing why I am here and what my goals are motivates me to stay on task and finish my degree.

Jacky: What advice do you want to offer to fellow students, traditional and nontraditional?

Holly: It’s such a privilege to get a good education and be able to pursue your dreams. Especially for women–what a gift! So I guess my advice is to read everything you can get your hands on. Fully engage in your classes. And respect yourself and your instructors enough to give your very best effort. Those habits will help you succeed not only in college, but in life.

As always, I want to thank our interviewee for her time, and I wish her lots of luck during her internship.

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