Every writer needs to develop a critical sense to augment creative ability. For this reason, the Creative Writing Department offers two types of courses. Workshop courses are seminars that focus on writing and on the discussion of student work. Reading courses for writers focus on aspects of literature presented from a writer's point of view. Frequently they employ writing in imitation as one of several approaches to understanding the craft of writing. Upper division workshop courses are offered at the beginning, intermediate, and advanced levels in poetry, nonfiction, and fiction. Several reading courses link two genres such as fiction and poetry, and poetry and drama.
The problem of teen gang violence can be eliminated. It will, however, take time, money, and a combined effort on the part of many people. Organized, free, after-school programs such as: sports teams and games; art, music, and drama activities; internships in local area businesses and professional organizations; and interesting volunteer activities in the community would help engage teens in worthwhile pursuits outside of school hours. More job opportunities for teens, especially those funded by state and local programs, would offer income for teens as well as productive work for the community. Outreach to families through schools, community organizations, and places of worship would help promote inter-generational activities that could improve family closeness, helping teens to work on their problems at the family level, instead of taking them to the streets. If these programs can be implemented, we will surely see a decrease in teen gang activity and safer streets and neighborhoods for us all.