History & Legacy
In January 2005, the University of New Mexico launched the Writing Across Communities (WAC) Initiative with the interdisciplinary support
of faculty, staff, and students. Although other universities refer to programs that encourage the development of writing and literacy as
Writing Across the Curriculum (also referred to as WAC) or Writing in the Disciplines (WID), the University of New Mexico named its program
Writing Across Communities to signal the importance of the culturally diverse UNM student body.
WACommunities at UNM supports, connects, and enhances the intellectual life of students and faculty engaged in the academic mission of creating and circulating knowledge. WACommunities asserts that literacy education is both a civil right and a civic responsibility. The success of WACommunities at UNM in promoting student-faculty engagement and dialog not only about writing, but also other topics of civic importance, has led to a national conversation that now includes other universities.
UNM is the founding chapter of the newly established National Consortium of Writing Across Communities (NCWAC), representing twenty-seven affiliated institutions. The NCWAC stakeholders affirm educational principles and cultural practices that promote the maintenance and wellbeing of human communities through literacy and writing. The NCWAC seeks to guide curriculum development, stimulate resource-sharing, cultivate networking, and promote research in language practices and literacy education throughout the nation, and to support local colleges and universities working to serve vulnerable communities within their spheres of influence.
The members of NCWAC will convene during the 2011 Conference of College Composition and Communication in Atlanta to draft its formal mission statement and action items. In the spirit of the past six years of WACommunities at UNM, the NCWAC will continue to advocate for culturally-relevant approaches to literacy education for historically-underserved student populations; promote resource-sharing between faculty and graduate students; mentor graduate students and junior faculty; serve as a clearinghouse for collaborative scholarly projects (conference panels, dissertation committees, research initiatives, visiting scholars, guest lectures); promote curriculum development. The NCWAC will host a Higher Education Literacy Summit in Summer 2012 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, for college teachers and graduate students in communities across the disciplines.
OBJECTIVES FOR 2012 NCWAC SUMMIT / GOALS FOR NCWAC
The objectives for the 2012 NCWAC Summit are as follows:
Informing approaches to those objectives are the following overarching goals of the Consortium: