Posts Tagged ‘Writing Studio’

The leaves are falling as rain showers continue here in Durham, NC. And two gas stations near Duke University show a price of $0.00 in bright numbers. No, it’s not a dream world, but instead is due to the pipeline break further south. And life continues on…

Speaking of continuing on, our International Conversation Café gathering resumes its weekly run tomorrow. Join us in Griffith Board Room, Bryan Center main floor, at 12:30!

We recently hosted 10 participants whose homelands included Argentina, Brazil, Chile, China, and South Korea. We chatted about the Centerfest street fair and the Durham farmers market, held year round. Duke’s own farmers market came up as well, but that’s now wrapping up for the season.

Participants traded ideas about studios offering Pilates and yoga, then discussed several beach destinations (Wrightsville Beach, Topsail Island, the Outer Banks) to consider for coastal adventures. Other topics jumped in along the way.

Upcoming conversation gatherings: Thursdays, September 22 and 29th, then October 6 and 13. Duke University students, visiting scholars and researchers, staff, faculty, and spouses are welcome.  No registration is necessary. Griffith Board Room, Bryan Center main floor, 12:30 to 1:30.  Come join us!

Rene D. Caputo, Duke University ESL Specialist
Thompson Writing Program and Writing Studio


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In our final International Conversation Cafe gathering of the semester, one of the main subjects for discussion was massive open online courses, known as MOOCs.  This topic was prompted by a cover story in The Chronicle, Duke’s student newspaper.  Below is information about major sources for such courses, which cover a wide range of disciplines.

Coursera website: https://www.coursera.org/
Free Duke online writing course begins April 21: https://www.coursera.org/course/composition

EdX website: https://www.edx.org/
Berkeley Courses:  Principles of Written English, parts 1 and 2 (archived):

You might also want to do a Google search for iTunes U, as one of our participants noted, to learn about the courses offered there.

We later talked about Easter and Passover, which some of our participants were curious about. We found more than one explanation for the origins of the word Easter, including that it came from the name of a pagan goddess. If you’re interested in Easter-related events at Duke Chapel, head here:  https://chapel.duke.edu/events

We also discovered some information about Passover ~ and Duke activities related to that ~ here: http://studentaffairs.duke.edu/jewishlife/shabbat-and-holidays/passover-duke

Wishing you a good weekend and springtime, whatever you may or may not celebrate,

Rene Caputo
Duke ESL Specialist
Thompson Writing Program and Writing Studio

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We’re back!  Last week was our inaugural gathering for this semester.  And if you had joined us, you would have met people from China, Turkey, New Zealand, and the United States.  Perhaps, though, you were there.  Either way, feel free to join us ~ and bring a friend.

We are meeting in the new and improved Meeting Room B (Bryan Center, main level) this semester, just up the walkway from Au Bon Pain.  Drop on by to talk with people from around the world about culture, world events, and more.  Thursdays from 12:30 -1:30.

See you there!
Rene Caputo
Duke ESL Specialist
Thompson Writing Program and Writing Studio

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Mark your calendar for these family-friendly festivals!

Durham Centerfest Arts Festival ~ September 21 & 22
(free, but suggested $5 donation)

Raleigh Bugfest ~ September 21 (free)

Carrboro Music Festival ~ September. 28 and 29:  (free)
General information  http://www.carrboromusicfestival.com/
Map and schedule http://www.carrboromusicfestival.com/PDF/2013CMFmap.pdf

Raleigh International Festival ~ October 4 through 6 (tickets)

Enjoy our local fall festivals,
Rene Caputo
Duke ESL Specialist


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I hope that your semester has gotten off to a good start!  The summer has flown by as always….and we’re back.

International Conversation Café 

Join us in the new and improved Meeting Room B (Bryan Center, main level) this semester.  Talk with people from around the world about culture, world events, and more.  Thursdays from 12:30 -1:30. 

Writing Workshops

Both the Undergraduate and the ESL workshop series begin this month. Read about them here to see which workshops might interest you:

We hope you will participate in the above in addition to making Writing Studio tutoring appointments.

All the best,
Rene Caputo
Duke ESL Specialist

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Happy New Year ~ and spring semester!  We hope you had an enjoyable winter break.

Our International Conversation Café returns to Duke’s Bryan Center on Thursday, January 17.  As usual, we will gather in Meeting Room B from 12:30 to 1:30.  Join us for casual conversation in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere.  All members of the Duke University community, including undergraduate and graduate students, post-doc fellows and visiting scholars, faculty and staff, and spouses are welcome to join us.

Our weekly Thursday afternoon gatherings will continue throughout the semester (except on March 14, which falls during spring break), ending on April 11.

In other news, the Writing Studio opens for appointments on January 22nd.  Here’s the webpage through which undergraduate students and international graduate students may make appointments: http://twp.duke.edu/writing-studio/appointments

We look forward to seeing you this semester!

All the best,

Rene Caputo
ESL specialist
Thompson Writing Program and Writing Studio

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We hope that you’ve been enjoying the fall thus far, including Halloween.  And our positive thoughts go out to all those who were impacted by Hurricane Sandy.

Tomorrow, Tuesday, November 6, is our presidential election (in addition to many others “races,” as we call them), though many people have voted early.   In our presidential race, the candidates try to win the most votes in individual states.

Below are two views of what might possibly happen tomorrow.  On these maps, red represents each state that the newspaper thinks the Republicans (Romney) might win, while blue represents a state that the Democrats (Obama) might win. If a state is neither red nor blue, as is the case with our state, North Carolina, no one is certain about who might win the most votes there.

New York Times:  http://elections.nytimes.com/2012/electoral-map

Wall Street Journal: http://projects.wsj.com/campaign2012/maps/#r=pres&v=states

Later in the week, on Thursday afternoon, come join us for our International Conversation Café.  We’ll meet in Meeting Room B of the Bryan Center from 12:30 to 1:30 to discuss culture, current events, and more.

Also check out the schedule of workshops offered by our Writing Studio.  Note that some of them are specifically for undergraduate students:

All the best,
Rene Caputo

Thompson Writing Program and Writing Studio

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