Tutoring available online to students throughout the summer

DUNMORE, Pa. – While many Penn State Scranton students view summer as a time to relax and recharge the batteries, plenty of undergraduates use it as an opportunity to get ahead or catch up on their coursework. For those students, the campus’ Learning Center and Writing Center are there to meet their needs.

Throughout the entire summer, the Learning and Writing centers are offering a full slate of virtual tutoring services through Zoom for students who want additional assistance outside of the classroom.

“While we have always offered tutoring over the summer months, the online option has made it easier for us to retain tutors who might have to move away from the area or who are transitioning to University Park or other Penn State campuses,” said Associate Director of Learning and Disability Services Eileen Giovagnoli. “It also allows the tutors and students a little more flexibility because we can offer expanded hours, including evenings and weekends.”

Tutoring services are now available for the following subjects: writing, math, statistics, biology, chemistry and nutrition. To make an appointment, click on the “Schedule an Appointment” link on the Learning Center’s webpage. In addition, students can watch a video on how to schedule a tutoring appointment.

Because most summer courses are condensed into four- and six-week periods, students have to process and absorb material at a much quicker pace. Given that, seeking out the services of a tutor can significantly enhance their learning experience, according to Writing Center Coordinator Kate Lafferty-Danner.

“It is a great way to get additional assistance,” Lafferty-Danner said. “In addition, students can make appointments for writing assistance for cover letters, graduate school applications, personal statements and any other professional documents they might need. Tutoring is a free resource that is available to all students at our campus and studies show that students who utilize tutoring services are more successful in their coursework.”

Lafferty-Danner is handling all writing assistance this summer, while a committed group of student tutors are assisting their peers with the other available subjects, among them math tutor Alvin Binu.

“I was more than happy to continue my services during the summer months. If you enjoy doing something and it enhances your abilities, never stop it,” said Binu, a sophomore aerospace engineering major. “I enjoy the way that I can help others and make them feel better about themselves. Seeing my peers happy makes me happy as well.”

Giovagnoli added, “We have some amazing tutors working with us this summer. Some of our tutors work summer jobs, so it can be challenging to find tutors over the summer. We recruit our tutors throughout the spring semester and many of them will plan their summer schedule around tutoring and are often taking summer classes themselves.”

In addition to the tutoring services, the campus also has its Summer Bridge program for new first-year students who want to get a jump on their Penn State career. The free two-week program, which will take place Aug. 2-13, gives students the chance to work with tutors, faculty and staff to enhance their math, English and college success skills, while easing the overall transition to college life. For more information, visit the Summer Bridge program website.

For more information on the campus’ tutoring services, contact Giovagnoli at [email protected] or Lafferty-Danner at [email protected].