MI-WPA: Learn. Connect. Advocate.

The mission of the Michigan Writing Program Administrators Affiliate (MI-WPA) is to build and strengthen the network of professionals who lead, coordinate, and work within writing programs (in all their forms) across the state of Michigan. More specifically, our goal is to offer support and resources for WPAs as we work in our own local contexts. We know there is outstanding teaching, curriculum design, assessment, and other program work going on across the state; the MI-WPA aims to amplify that work for a broader audience so that we can learn from and with each other.

We encourage you to join the MI-WPA to participate in this effort. There is no cost to join, and when you do, you will be able to:

    • Learn more about how writing is taught at different institutions across the state by participating in regional conferences, co-mentoring partnerships, and/or campus visit programs.
    • Connect with others doing WPA work to share ideas, resources, and research opportunities by joining and contributing to the MI-WPA listserv, sharing resources developed in your programs, and publicizing opportunities for cross-institutional research and learning partnerships.
    • Advocate for students, writing faculty, and writing programs by participating in state-wide conversations about higher education and writing instruction.

The MI-WPA will work to initiate and facilitate the sharing of ideas and opportunities, and we hope you’ll join us by completing the short form found here: https://goo.gl/forms/MFFWgYzFg7XtQUHv2.

Click here to find information about the Executive Committee and Local Leadership.

Click here to find information about the MI-WPA By-Laws.

Click here to find out more about the curriculum of composition programs within the affiliate.

Click here to review the minutes from past MI-WPA meetings.

Follow us on Twitter here: @MichiganWpa

Request to join our Facebook Group here: Michigan WPA

MI-WPA Affiliate By-Laws

Michigan Writing Program Administrators

Michigan Affiliate of the Council of Writing Program Administrators



Section 1.  Name.

This organization shall be known as the Michigan Writing Program Administrators, an affiliate of the Council of Writing Program Administrators (WPA).

Section 2. Location.

The principal office of MI-WPA shall be located at the office of the current chair of the affiliate. Other addresses (for mailing purposes, etc.) shall be designated and published, as appropriate by the Executive Committee. Meetings may be held at any suitable location.

Section 3. Affiliation.

This affiliate is a local subsection of WPA.  MI-WPA shall operate within the broad policies and procedures of the national WPA organization.


Section 1.  General Purposes.

As an affiliate of the national Council of Writing Program Administrators, MI-WPA shares its general goal of providing opportunities to focus on matters attendant the the administration of college and university writing programs.  The purpose of the MI-WPA group is to provide a state-wide organization for collaboration, collegial contact, and state-wide advocacy among writing program administrators at the state’s colleges, universities and community colleges.   

Section 2. Activities.

To promote the affiliate’s mission and purposes, member institutions’ activities and programs will be profiled at regular annual meetings, and from time to time the affiliate will sponsor public meetings and workshops and conferences. These meetings will provide opportunities for membership networking, information sharing, and may include presentations and/or outside speakers.

Section 3. Meetings.

This affiliate shall meet regularly at a location to be chosen by the leadership.

Section 4. Website.

The organization maintains a website that serves as a resource of shared information, including program descriptions of all member institutions, best practices information, and related materials.  The website is intended to encourage collaboration among institutions and to present the MI-WPA as an advocacy and organizational force in the state of Michigan.


Section 1. Qualification for Membership.

MI-WPA is open to membership to anyone serving as or with interest in working as a writing program administrator at any institution of higher education in the state of Michigan.  The Executive Committee will determine on an annual basis if members will be required to submit dues, depending on needs of the Affiliate.

Section 2. Privileges of Membership.

Members shall be eligible: to attend all affiliate meetings; to vote at all membership meetings; to hold office as specified in these By-Laws; to serve on committees; and for all other rights and privileges that may from time to time be determined by majority vote of the membership and/or incorporated in these By-Laws.

Section 3. Suspension of Membership.

Suspension or revocation of membership shall only occur if a member knowingly violates ethical standards as defined and promulgated by WPA. The Executive Committee shall establish procedures, which include provisions for protecting due-process rights of members that may lead to revocation of membership.

Section 4. Fiscal Year.

The fiscal year shall be January 1 to December 31.


Section 1. Executive Committee

The Executive Committee shall consist of affiliate officers and committee chairpersons. The Executive Committee shall conduct the business of the affiliate within in accordance with all provisions of the By-Laws.

Section 2. Officers

The officers of MI-WPA shall consist of a Chair, Chair-elect, Secretary, Webmaster and any Coordinators.  All affiliate officers will hold dues-paid membership in the national Council of Writing Program Administrators.

Section 3. Duties of Officers and Qualifications

  1. Chair and chair-elect

The chair, together with the chair-elect, will help set dates and locations for meetings, solicit, collect and organize issues for the agenda, serve as a point of contact with the CWPA and represent the organization as necessary.

  1. Chair-elect

The chair-elect will share responsibilities of the chair as described above for a year prior to assuming the position of chair.

  1. Secretary

The Secretary will record or cause to be recorded, minutes of all affiliate meetings, and shall keep an active file of such minutes. The Secretary shall also serve as corresponding secretary for the affiliate.

  1.  Webmaster

The webmaster will develop and maintain the organization’s website, manage the group’s email distribution list, and coordinate electronic voting for elections and motions.

  1.  Regional Coordinators

Regional Coordinators will be appointed from five regions in the state: Upper Peninsula, Northern Lower Peninsula, Central, Southeast, and West. Regional coordinators will serve as liaisons between members in their assigned regions and the Executive Committee.

Section 4. Election of Officers; Procedures

Officers will serve for a term of two (2) years, or until their successors are elected.  Elections will be held in two-year cycles via electronic voting. There shall be staggered terms of office to provide continuity and stability to the leadership. The Chair-elect will be elected and Coordinators will be appointed in one two-year cycle, and the Secretary and Webmaster will be elected in the alternate cycle.  

Section 5. Committees

Affiliate standing committees shall consist, minimally, of an Executive Committee, and if necessary a Nominating Committee.

Committees may be appointed from time to time to accomplish specific objectives. Such committees shall be appointed by the Executive Committee and will be discharged when not needed.

Section 6. Quorums and Voting

A quorum for Affiliate and committee meetings will be defined as a simple majority of the membership of the affiliate or the committee. In the absence of a quorum, voting will move to an electronic forum to enable participation from the full membership.

Voting will be conducted electronically. Elections will be announced one week before the voting period, and the voting period will remain open for one week. All members in good standing will be allowed to vote.


Section 1. Notifications

Notification of committee and Affiliate meetings will take place through email and the MI-WPA website.

Section 2. Eligibility to Attend, Vote, and Participate

All MI-WPA members are eligible to attend and participate in discussions at committee and Affiliate meetings. All members who have been a member for at least one month are eligible to vote. Voting privileges in committees will be restricted to committee members.

Section 3. Parliamentary Procedure

While informality in committee and Affiliate meetings is encouraged, Robert’s Rules of Order shall prevail.

Section 4. Suspension of By-Laws

The Affiliate may temporarily suspend its By-Laws, in whole or in part, by a ¾ vote of the membership.


Section 1. By-Laws Reviews

In each of the first two (2) years following the adoption of these By-Laws, the Chair shall appoint a By-Laws Review Committee to recommend revisions, if necessary, to the membership. Following two (2) such reviews, subsequent reviews shall be conducted at the discretion of the Chair and Chair-elect or upon request of the Executive Committee or the membership.

Section 2. Amendments

These By-Laws may be amended by a majority vote of the membership. All proposed amendments shall be emailed to each member at least two (2) weeks prior to the date that voting will commence.

Amendments may not be acted upon at the same meeting at which they are proposed.

These By-Laws were originally adopted on November 2, 2018.

Executive Committee and Local Leadership

Executive Committee  Information

Chair – Amy Ferdinandt Stolley (email: stolleam@gvsu.edu) – Term: 2018-2020

Amy Ferdinandt Stolley is an Associate Professor and Director of First-Year Writing at Grand Valley State University. Amy completed her Ph.D. in English (Rhetoric and Composition) at Purdue University in 2007, and her current research focuses on emotion and writing program administration and women’s historical rhetoric. She is the co-author (with Colin Charlton, Jonnika Charlton, Tarez Samra Graban, and Kathleen J. Ryan) of GenAdmin: Theorizing WPA Identities in the 21st Century, and her scholarship has been published in WPA: Writing Program Administration and Peitho.

Chair-Elect – Megan Schoen (email: mschoen2342@gmail.com) – Term: 2018-2020

Megan Schoen is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Writing and Rhetoric at Oakland University, where she serves as the Director of First-Year Writing. She completed her Ph.D. in English (Rhetoric and Composition) at Purdue University in 2012. Her research interests include composition studies, writing program administration, writing across the curriculum, rhetorical theory, and comparative rhetorics. Megan has published in Rhetoric Review, WPA: Writing Program Administration, The WAC Journal, and Constellations. She is a co-founder and co-managing editor of Present Tense: A Journal of Rhetoric in Society.

Secretary – Scott Kowalewski (email: sjkowale@svsu.edu) – Term 2019-2021

Scott J. Kowalewski is an Associate Professor of Rhetoric and Professional Writing at Saginaw Valley State University. He earned a Ph.D. in Rhetoric and Writing from Virginia Tech in 2013. At SVSU, Scott serves as the Writing Program Administrator and Co-Director of the Center for Experience Research and Design. His research and teaching interests include usability studies, user experience design, writing program administration, curriculum development, and podcasting. His work has appeared in Programmatic Perspectives and Communication Design Quarterly.

Webmaster – Logan Bearden (email: lbearden@emich.edu) – Term 2018-2021

Logan Bearden is an Assistant Professor of Written Communication at Eastern Michigan University. He completed his PhD in Rhetoric and Composition at Florida State University in 2016. His research focuses on multimodal composition, writing program administration, curricular development/revision, and outcomes statements.

Local Coordinators

Mark Blaauw-Hara – Northern Lower Peninsula Coordinator (Term: 2018-2021) –  North Central Michigan College (email: mhara@ncmich.edu)

Mark Blaauw-Hara is a Professor of English and Writing Program Coordinator at North Central Michigan College. Mark completed his PhD at Old Dominion University, his MA from Arizona State, and his BA from Michigan State. Mark’s writing has appeared in journals such as Teaching English in the Two-Year College, The Journal of Teaching Writing, Composition Forum, and The Community College Journal of Research & Practice, as well as edited collections such as (Re)Considering What We Know and WPAs in Transition. He is the current Vice President of the Council of Writing Program Administrators and a Reviews Editor of Teaching English at the Two-Year College.

Brian Gogan – West Coordinator (Term 2018-2020) – Western Michigan University (Brian.Gogan@wmich.edu)

Brian Gogan is an associate professor at Western Michigan University, where he teaches courses in rhetorical theory, professional writing, and composition. He holds a Ph.D. in Rhetoric and Writing (2011) from Virginia Tech and is the author of Jean Baudrillard: The Rhetoric of Symbolic Exchange (2017). His scholarship has appeared in journals such as College Composition and Communication, Rhetoric Review, IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication, and Across the Disciplines, as well in the collections What Is College Reading? Microhistories of Composition, Re/Framing Identifications, and Who Speaks for Writing: Stewardship for Writing Studies in the 21st Century.

Central Coordinator (Term 2018-2020) –

Elizabeth Monske – Upper Peninsula (Term 2018-2020) – Northern Michigan University

Jeff Pruchnic – Southeast Coordinator (Term 2018-2020) – Wayne State University (email: jeffpruchnic@wayne.edu) 

Jeff Pruchnic is an Associate Professor and Director of Composition in the Department of English at Wayne State University. Jeff completed his PhD in English (Rhetoric & Composition) from the Pennsylvania State University in 2006. He is the author of the book Rhetoric and Ethics in the Cybernetic Age: The Transhuman Condition (Routledge 2014) and essays in such journal as JAC, Rhetoric Review, and Rhetoric Society Quarterly.

Composition Curricula: Models from Within the Affiliate 

Composition Curricula: Models from Within the Affiliate 

Eastern Michigan University –  https://www.emich.edu/english/fywp/

The First-Year Writing Program (FYWP) provides curriculum, instruction, and assessment for the following courses, open to all undergraduates at Eastern Michigan University.

  • WRTG 120: Composition I – Writing the College Experience, a credit-bearing elective course that counts toward graduation, introduces key concepts of college-level literacy including awareness of genre conventions and strategies, the notion of writing as a process, and the role of literacy in shaping the identities of writers as students, citizens, and individuals.
  • WRTG 121: Composition II – Researching the Public Experience, fulfills the Effective Communication requirement in EMU’s General Education curriculum and focuses on the expectations for college-level research through attention to a range of research methods and genres of writing, with emphasis on the role of inquiry, audience awareness, and revision in the processes of writing and learning at the college level.

Curriculum and pedagogy for all course offerings in the FYWP grow out of program-wide learning outcomes that guide the work of instructors and students in developing and documenting the knowledge, abilities, and attitudes that support college-level writing and research.

Grand Valley State Universityhttps://www.gvsu.edu/writing/first-year-writing-overview-27.htm

The Department of Writing at GVSU offers two first-year writing courses that are designed to prepare students for academic research writing by emphasizing the writing process, information literacy, and rhetorical awareness. All first-year students are invited to select which first-year writing course (or courses) they believe they are best suited for using a directed self-placement model. WRT 098 (Writing with a Purpose) is an elective developmental writing course that offers students practice in writing and research to prepare for WRT 150. WRT150 (Strategies in Writing) is a portfolio-based research writing course. Students in WRT 150 write and revise three essays that are included in their final portfolio, which is graded collaboratively by a team of first-year writing faculty.

Oakland Universityhttps://www.oakland.edu/wrt/first-year/

The Department of Writing and Rhetoric offers first-year writing classes that focus on helping students to develop the rhetorical skills, processes, and information literacies necessary for writing and composing in the 21st century. Our classes focus on community and civic engagement, new media composition, collaborative writing, and revision.