Ashworth College Students Get Creative with New Virtual Writer’s Club

Norcross, GA, November 09, 2008 --( Creative writing differs from homework assignments and research papers, because the writer is given the freedom to use his or her imagination to the fullest when creating a story. With Ashworth College’s new online Writer’s Club, students have the opportunity to hone their professional writing skills as well as take a break from their studies and let their creative juices flow.

Recently founded by Ashworth Criminal Justice Student Betty Ray-Mydland, the Writer’s Club was created as a place where fellow students can come to ask questions and get help on writing essays, mastering APA formatting, practice various writing styles with peer-to-peer feedback, and more.

“Over the years, I have worked with students on APA formatting,” said Ray-Mydland, who is currently pursuing a Bachelor’s online from her home in Indiana. “APA seems to be the most problematic issue for many, along with style and grammar issues. The Club will be a great place to help other students improve their writing skills and to exchange ideas.”

The Club is structured on two levels. Academically students provide constructive feedback on each other’s writing, which will benefit them when writing academic essays, research papers, etc. The second is more creative. Student members can submit their own creative work (stories, articles, etc.) and get feedback from their classmates.

“I love to write. In fact, for many years I’ve wanted to write a book,” said Ray-Mydland. “Last Thanksgiving holiday, due to an incident in my personal life, I finally started it. The title is “Death of a Hero: A Sister’s Story”. I am hoping to have it published by the middle of 2009. Getting feedback from Club members will be invaluable to the process.”

Open to all Ashworth students and alumni, the Ashworth Writer’s Club encourages members to try their hand at a variety of writing styles to include fiction, song lyrics, poetry, novellas, etc. Club members have also expressed a long term goal of partnering with Ashworth Administration to publish a supplemental curriculum manual for the school’s writing courses.

Ashworth’s administration was pleased to discover this grassroots initiative on the Student Forum. As a distance learning institution, Ashworth College, along with Ashworth Career School and Ashworth High School, operates without many of the trappings associated with the traditional brick and mortar school, i.e., classrooms, sports, etc. However, through its development of social communities and active partnering with administration and students, Ashworth is working to minimize that gap.

“Our students represent a growing segment of the population attempting to manage career and family as well as their education. They are drawn to our programs because they are flexible, self-paced and fit into their existing lives,” said Jon Bouffler, Ashworth Executive Vice President. “In spite of not physically attending classes, our students express interest in many of the trappings associated with a traditional school environment – which includes connecting with Ashworth and fellow students with similar interests. These specialty organizations are a great reflection of our students’ commitment to the school.”

“Developing online communities is a natural for distance education students. However ours is much more that a social site,” Bouffler added. “It’s the student union, the school library, the career counseling center and much more all rolled into one. Through our online communities and the Student Forum we can give them a well-rounded experience.”

The Ashworth Writer’s Club is just one of several student-driven initiatives that developed within the Ashworth online communities. To date, students recently established a Forensic Science Club, student newspaper, identified the school’s first mascot as well as establishing online fraternities and sororities.

About Ashworth
Ashworth College, a worldwide leader in comprehensive distance education, offers diploma and degree programs in high school, career school, associates, bachelors and masters. It is accredited by the Distance Education and Training Council (DETC). Ashworth High School is further accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) and the Commission on International and Trans-Regional Accreditation (CITA). Based in Norcross, GA, Ashworth offers more than 450 different high school, career school, associates, bachelors and masters courses. For more information visit

Ashworth College
Richard Orr