Student Perspectives

Below, students who took First-Year Writing Workshop reflect on their experiences.
“Looking back at all of the courses I've taken so far, I have to say that FYW Workshop was by far one of the most enjoyable and memorable. Coming into Barnard, I was not comfortable with the idea of speaking in class (I have always attended small schools where I never really participated in class) and it was definitely something that I was worried about. However, not once did I feel uncomfortable in the class. In fact, the course helped me find my voice. While the thought of participating still makes me nervous, I learned that my thoughts and opinions are important and that I should share them. [The instructor] was absolutely amazing, and her class really helped make my transition into college smooth and enjoyable.”
Isabella Diaz, ‘20, Psychology major
“My FYW Workshop, Women & Culture, gave me the opportunity to step out of my comfort zone, regarding both public speaking and writing. [The instructor’s] dedication to her students and their writing and presentation abilities helped me obtain writing and speaking skills that I was able to apply to courses beyond Women & Culture. FYW Workshop is a chance for you to become familiar with Barnard's expectations of writing so that you are prepared for the rest of your time at Barnard, and I would highly recommend that you take part in this precious opportunity.”
Zyaira Speller, ‘21, American Studies major, Race & Ethnicity concentration
“FYW Workshop was a nourishing learning environment where, especially as a first year, my ideas felt validated and everyone's participation was encouraged. I learned and understood exactly how to further improve my writing skills through the interactive activities and the time spent on reading, analyzing and discussing.”
Stephanie Garcia, ‘20
“I had an amazing experience in my FYW Workshop! [...] I was able to manage my readings and assignments for this class very well; [...] I could really practice writing more. [...] Coming into Barnard, I knew my skills were sufficient, but I wanted an additional boost, which is what FYW Workshop gave me. In high school, I did not have the best experiences with essay writing, but I had a great experience in this class. I learned how to write a paper more cohesively, which has helped me to this day. Taking this class was especially a good preparation to taking FYS: Reacting to the Past! Because I had good writing skills from FYW Workshop, I could focus more on my speaking skills. In all, I came out of this class feeling very confident about my analysis and writing skills.”
Ana Leon, ‘20, Computer Science major
“I think First-Year Writing Workshop gave me the tools I needed to excel in a seminar based course. When I moved on to First-Year Seminar I felt confident knowing that I had the right tools and knew where to go to for help because Workshop had helped me with getting connected to the tools on campus. I also felt that First Year Workshop made sure I never fell behind and that I was constantly working on editing a paper which in turn makes for a great paper.”
Abigail Gutierrez, ‘20, Biology major