Writing conference to explore literacy, leadership in the new millennium


BINGHAMTON, NY – The 2011 SUNY Council on Writing conference will gather writers and scholars from around the world for a two-day exploration of literacy leadership for the 21st century. Held Mar. 18 – 19 at the Holiday Inn Arena in downtown Binghamton, the conference will explore the challenges of educating the next generation of writers and discuss possible solutions.

With the theme, “Building 21st Century Writing Programs: Literacy and Leadership in the New Millennium,” the conference aims to examine how writing programs are changing, particularly in the age of new media. Discussion will also focus on how writing programs can meet the needs of students who grow up using non-privileged varieties of English or for whom English is a second language. In addition, conference-goers will examine how writing program can create more ethical working conditions for instructors of all ranks.

The conference’s plenary address will be delivered at 7 p.m. Friday, Mar. 19, by Kurt Spellmeyer and is titled “Forging the New Humanities.” Spellmeyer has directed the writing program at Rutgers University for the past 25 years. His books include Common Ground: Dialogue, Understanding, and the Teaching of Composition and Arts of Living: Reinventing the Humanities for the Twenty-first Century. His address will argue for reforging writing and rhetoric’s place within the humanities.

Lynn Bloom will present the conference’s keynote address at 1 p.m Saturday, Mar. 19. Bloom is a Board of Trustees Distinguished Professor and the Aetna Chair of Writing at the University of Connecticut. She is the author of over 25 books including Writers Without Borders: Writing and Teaching Writing in Troubled Times. Bloom’s address will explore how middle class values endure in composition courses, and how current developments in technology and social media are transforming the way we read, think, conduct research and write.  

The conference is hosted by Binghamton University's first-year writing program and the Writing Initiative. Open to the public, the conference costs $45.  For more information, contact Mark Brantner, visiting assistant professor of writing and rhetoric, at brantner@binghamton.edu or Kelly Kinney, assistant professor of English and rhetoric and director of the first-year writing program at kkinney@binghamton.edu.

Last Updated: 9/17/13