Oklahoma City University students teach at shelter

Creative writing students from Oklahoma City University helped homeless mothers and their children learn how to express themselves through writing during a workshop at Oklahoma City homeless shelter.
BY ROD JONES Published: July 28, 2012
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Graduate students in Oklahoma City University's Red Earth master of fine arts program gave a creative writing workshop for residents of the Wonderfully Made shelter last week.

It was the first collaboration between Red Earth MFA and the shelter, but there are plans to make it an annual event.

The shelter in northeast Oklahoma City is for homeless women and their children.

Jeanetta Mish, Red Earth MFA interim director, said the goal was to help residents use creative writing as a means of self-expression and reflection.

“Some people find writing a therapeutic exercise, especially when life gets difficult,” Mish said.

“We hope we can help the residents learn how to use writing as a creative outlet for expression of their lives and experiences and also as a way to improve writing skills that are necessary for everyday purposes such as job applications.”

During their visit, the students learned about the shelter and its programs from the director, Lisa Baldwin Miller.

The creative writing students were divided into two teams — one to work with the children and the other with adults. The program views these workshops as training for its students in teaching writing and also as community service.

The Red Earth MFA is a low-residency, two-year degree program.

For more information about the program, call 208-5127 or go to www.okcu.edu/english/redearthmfa.

Rod Jones is a staff writer for media relations at Oklahoma City University.