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Two students in the Class of 2022 selected as winners in the UIUC Undergraduate Essay Contest


Recently, under the guidance and recommendation of Dr. Kent Quaney, an Adjunct Faculty, Xiwei Wang and Xichu Xiao from class of 2022, participated in the UIUC undergraduate Essay Contest and eventually both of them were selected as winners of the contest. It is worth mentioning that their essays may also be selected as one of the award winning essays. UIUC may use their Essay in designing future Rhetoric textbooks, in order to better address the needs of students. It is reported that UIUC Undergraduate Essay Contest is based on its general writing course for the whole students who participate in the Rhetoric Program, and there are only 12 winners which are selected by experts of more than 3,000 participates each year. This is a yearly contest that has occasionally had international students as winners, but those students have in the past always been residents in Illinois. Xiwei and Xichu are the first winners ever from one of our foreign campuses. The two writing courses offered by ZJUI are classical writing courses in UIUC, Rhetoric 101-Principle of Writing and Rhetoric 102-Principle of Research. These two courses introduce the basic process of writing, explain how to organize the structure of the whole text and paragraph, how to present arguments, how to make convincing arguments and other writing methods, which provide students with a lot of clear guidance in writing English essay, and also lay a solid foundation for students to learn and develop in the international environment.

When talking about Rhetoric 101 and 102, Xiwei Wang said that the two courses have significantly improved his writing skills, especially English writing. ‘The most obvious point is that it allows me to face problems, dare to think and put forward ideas, and let me no longer be afraid of the length of the article, but to transform my views into a full article of 7 pages or even 10 pages. ’,‘In addition, Rhetoric 101 and 102 also taught me how to use library databases to find, screen, read, analyze and cite references, which will be of great help to my later studies.’ Xichu Xiao agreed with him and pointed out that Rhetoric is quite different from the Chinese writing he learned in the past, ‘Through this course, I learned a lot about the main points of English writing, especially how to convince the readers.’

Kristi Mcduffie, Director of Rhetoric Program of UIUC English Department, came to the International Campus to present awards to the two students, and invited them to sign the Permission & Use of Copyrighted Material which authorized UIUC to use their papers in future textbooks. The two ZJUI students were very glad to have an opportunity to turn their papers into model essays for American College students and showed their gratitude to the instructor, Dr. Kent. Xichu Xiao said ‘By learning the examples and concepts given by Mr. Kent in class, I have a deeper understanding of how to impress and attract readers, and how to conceive the framework of the article. In the process of writing, I feel more easily. ’, ‘Through this course, my English thinking and vocabulary have been greatly improved. Through a lot of writing, I have learned many new English words, and can use them to express my ideas more appropriately. In the meanwhile, my critical and logical writing thinking have also been improved.’


Students with Kristi and instructors of Rhetoric


Sign the Permission & Use of Copyrighted Material

Dr. Kent, the instructor, is an Adjunct Faculty of ZJUI, faculty of UIUC English Department, and an American novelist. Be it at an interview, He could hardly conceal his pride and excitement. He said, As the instructor for Xiwei and Xichu, I noticed right away that they both did excellent work. Their writing and their contribution in class was excellent from the beginning. They both show a maturity and sophistication in both writing style and complex thinking that is advanced and admirable. Also, they both often took advantage of my guidance in office hours and conferences and took my teaching guidance and writing suggestions very seriously, showing me that they were both deeply committed to improving and learning. I was always very happy and impressed with these two students. Dr. Kent said ‘I believe that their award will also inspire more ZJUI students to continue to write and create better works to compete in the contest.’

Translator:Jin Xiufang