The essays that appear in the Discovering the Student, Discovering the Self: Essays from ENG 100 Students publication are selected by an English 100 committee from submissions from English 100 students from the Fall 2006 semester to the present. The criteria used to evaluate and select these essays include content, originality, a sense of discovery and insight on the part of the student writer, control of form, language and sentence construction and representation of the various types of assignments students are engaged in while in this course. Introduction to College Writing (ENG 100) is a developmental composition course designed for students who show signs of needing additional work on their college-level writing before starting the regular general education composition classes. In this course, students learn about and refine their writing process with a strong focus on the act of revision, engage in critical reading, thinking and writing and write both personal and text-based essays. ENG 100 prepares students for the rigors of college-level writing and introduces them to college expectations.
It is our hope that these student essays reflect the struggle and the joy, the hard work and the rewards that these students have experienced both in their lives and in the classroom. Furthermore, these essays reflect the diversity of our English 100 students and the uniqueness of this course. Some students are entering college straight out of high school while others are returning to the classroom after years of work and family. They come from urban and rural areas, and represent different races and cultures. And this work is truly their work — the committee has not made any revisions or corrections to the essays. And as you read, we hope that you will discover the same things that the students have discovered: during their first semester in college they are discovering themselves, realizing that they are part of many communities and defining themselves as individuals, students, scholars and citizens.