Community Writing Center

The Community Writing Center takes the University Writing Center beyond campus into the surrounding community.

Image of ACH Clear Pathways' Smile cohort work.        Image of ACH Clear Pathways' Smile cohort work.         Image of ACH Clear Pathways' Smile cohort work.


Through partnership with the Center for Community Engaged Teaching and Research and the English Department, this initiative offers writing instruction as well as creative and professional writing workshops to students enrolled in ACH Clear Pathways  and members of the Hill District and Uptown communities. ACH Clear Pathways nurtures creativity through the visual and performing arts to underserved youth and families of Pittsburgh. Read more about the Community Writing Center in the Duquesne Duke and DU Times.

The CWC also partners with secondary schools in the Pittsburgh region to help implement writing centers at the secondary level and to train student staff members in best practices of for individualized writing instruction.


Programming is currently being offered online due to the COVID pandemic, but post-pandemic the Community Writing Center will inhabit a space in ACH Clear Pathways' new headquarters in the Kaufman Building near campus. The address is 510 Heldman St, Pittsburgh, PA 15219.


Fall 2020 Work

In Fall 2020, five staff members are working with ACH Clear Pathways' Smile cohort, students age 5-8 years old on their ELA (English Language Arts) schoolwork; "All about Me" creative writing books for ACH Clear Pathways' fall showcase; and other literacy activities, including spoken word poetry and rap.

Image of ACH Clear Pathways' Smile cohort work.         Image of ACH Clear Pathways' Smile cohort work.

Spring 2021 Work

In Spring 2021, CWC staff members worked with ACH Clear Pathways students 9-12 years old on their ELA (English Language Arts) schoolwork and other literacy games and activities, including poetry writing, narrative writing, and multimodal storytelling. Work with Peters Township Middle School Writing Center coaches entailed mentoring them to work as tutors at their own writing center through roleplaying and scenario responses. CWC staff members also conducted consulting sessions with the Peters Township students on their own writing to demonstrate best practices for writing center work.

Image of ACH student from Spring 2021            Image of ACH student on Zoom call from Spring 2021

Photos are courtesy of Takara Canty, Taylor Waits, and Megan Williams.