Weber State shows thanks for tutors

Tutor _____ helps student ______ with her work. (The Signpost/ Jamii Freston)
Tutor Amanda Daines helps student Leah Hills with her homework. Weber State is celebrating tutor appreciation week. (The Signpost/ Jamii Freston)

Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Presidents Day – all designated holidays for people to express their gratitude to important figures. Now, add tutor appreciation week to that list.

Not just a day, but an entire week set aside for students and faculty to thank tutors for all they do. Tutor Appreciation Week always falls on the first full week in October – making it fall on Oct. 6-10 this year.

Tutor appreciation week is a celebration promoted by the College Reading and Learning Association (CRLA), which is a program that certifies tutors.

According to Claire Hughes, the writing center coordinator at Weber State University, tutors work extremely hard to earn their CRLA certification, which is recognized by institutions across the country.

“I feel so lucky to work with such talented, smart, intentionally kind students,” Hughes said.

This is Weber State University’s first effort to coordinate the celebration between all the traditional tutoring areas, supplemental instruction leaders and writing center tutors.

“We have an appreciation dinner for tutors at the end of the academic year,” said Prasanna Reddy, the director of Learning Support on the Weber State Ogden campus.

All throughout the week, tutors will be provided with small gifts and treats.

“I buy pizza and food for them randomly, but this week is still special,” Hughes said.

There will also be stations in the various tutoring centers, writing center and Davis learning center for students to write notes of thanks to their tutors. Former tutees are also welcome.

Davis campus math tutor Allen Stokes feels his tutees already show their appreciation after each session.

“They are so thankful and grateful for everything. That’s already thanks enough,” Stokes said.

According to Stokes, his job is very rewarding.

“(Tutoring) is more than showing people how to do stuff. It’s teaching people how they learn, which they can use in different aspects throughout their lives,” Allen said.

The faculty members associated with the tutoring center were very grateful for all the tutors have done.

“I feel like we develop a very close relationship with our tutors,” said Kim Fale, the tutoring specialist for the Davis campus. “You almost feel like they’re your kids.”

The relationship between tutors and tutees is equally important.

“Tutors help students feel connected to campus,” Hughes said.

She sees the tutor-student relationship as one of the most valuable parts of the experience.

“It’s about more than just the task,” Hughes said.

Leslie Loeffel, the Davis campus Learning Center director, pointed out that students who attended supplemental instruction sessions on a regular basis showed higher pass rates and better retention of material.

Fale said tutees have often asked her whether it is okay for them to bring in gifts, such as cookies, for their tutor.

“Tutors definitely deserve a pat on the back,” Hughes said.

All students are strongly encouraged to take advantage of the campus tutoring services, which have been paid for by student fees.

Tutees are especially welcome at the centers this week to express their gratitude to the tutors.