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University of Iowa News Release


University of Iowa News Release

Dec. 15, 2006

UI Provost Announces Launch Of 'Writing University' Web Site

The renowned writing programs at the University of Iowa have a new unified presence on the World Wide Web with the launch today of the "Writing University" Web site at

The Web site not only provides a handy portal to the UI writing programs -- including the Iowa Writers' Workshop, the International Writing Program, the Nonfiction Writing Program, the Iowa Playwrights Workshop, the Translation Workshop and the Iowa Summer Writing Festival -- but also centralizes writing news, lists upcoming events, and provides access to a wealth of writing materials: texts, journals, lists of Iowa-connected writers and publications, historic videos and archived audio.

Visitors to the site have the option of subscribing to an RSS feed.

Many of these materials have been organized in the Writing University Archive, a joint project of the writing programs and the UI School of Library and Information Science.

The "Writing University" Web site is one of the most visible results so far to come out of the work a task force that UI Executive Vice President and Provost Michael Hogan created in the fall of 2005. The Writing University Task Force was co-chaired by Vice Provost Pat Cain and International Writing Program director Christopher Merrill.


"It is the nature of universities to spend a lot of time focusing on what we plan to achieve -- how much money we intend to raise, or how much we intend to improve out rankings," Hogan said. "The Writing University project is something different. As we proudly take on the title of the 'Writing University,' and now as we launch the 'Writing University' Web site, we are proclaiming who we already are, celebrating a rich history that is unique to this university's identity, and renewing our commitment to that treasured heritage.

"The 'Writing University' site is just one of the ways we are fostering cooperation and coordination to the mutual benefit of all our writing programs."

The site's webmaster is Kelly Smith, a graduate of both the Iowa Writers' Workshop and the UI School of Library and Information Science. "The way we experience things like text, place, and community are evolving with Internet technologies; the 'Writing University' site is an experiment in how these technologies can manifest and extend Iowa's culture of writing," she said. "It's an ambitious venture, one consistent with Iowa's long tradition of innovation in the arts."

The content of the site will evolve and expand. Information and suggestions should be addressed to Kelly Smith at

For UI arts information and calendar updates, visit To receive UI arts news by e-mail, go to, click the link "Join or leave the list (or change settings)" and follow the instructions.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Arts Center Relations, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 351, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Winston Barclay, 319-384-0073; cell: 310-430-1013;