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North Carolina State University hosts summer writing camp for minorities

Vanessa Martin

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During the summer of 2017, North Carolina State University hosted a summer writing institute for Wake County Public School students of minorities, free of charge. This summer, the University will be hosting two more sessions of the camp. The camp will last from June 12 to June 29, with both a morning and afternoon session. The camp decides who attends by reviewing the applications sent in before the deadline.

The session during summer of 2017 allowed members to have two pieces of writing published. Authors Matt de la Pena, MK Asante, and Kelly Starling-Lyons visited to provide constructive criticism for the teens. Towards the end of the workshop, everyone was given a chance to publicly share their writing at a summer writing slam, hosted by So & So Books located in Downtown Raleigh. The Office of Equity Affairs spent about 20,000 dollars on the institute.

“One of the best experiences was probably meeting the authors and letting them see our writing from their eyes. A valuable lesson that I learned was probably trial and error and also resilience like when you get harsh criticism and being able to bounce back from the setbacks whether it’s writing or anything else,” said Stella Mabiala, junior.

The new 2018 sessions will feature visiting authors Nic Stone, author of “The Disturbed Girl’s Dictionary”, and Nonieqa Ramos, author of “Dear Martin.” C.J. Suitt, spoken word poet, also will be returning once again this summer.  Attendees will also receive books published by these authors. Members will also be given lunch and transportation to Poe Hall, which is where the sessions are located on NC State’s campus.

The Summer Writing Institute not only allows the student writers to become better authors, it also allows them to tell their story and tell about their life experiences. The students meet new people and also get a chance to explore a college campus.

“I love watching our HS writers connect with the writers who come to mentor them and work with them. I truly believe in the power of sharing our voice and it is such an honor to watch the young people who come to the writing institute explore their voice. When our writers share themselves in their writing they are sharing such an amazing gift with those of us who get to read and hear their work,” said Teresa Bunner, a leader of the camp.

 

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