Summer Writing Workshop

Odyssey Summer Creative Writing Workshop

Do you want to enhance your writing skills? Learn from a university professor and published author? Write about your own experience and community? Apply for the Odyssey Project's free writing workshop for adult learners.

students writing

“Writing for Discovery: Self, Public, and Community” is a space for students to explore issues relevant to their lived experience in Champaign-Urbana and the surrounding communities. Through their writing, students will refine their understanding of how local issues affect them and express their ideas to private and public audiences.

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To apply you must be at least 18 years old, income-eligible, and may not already have a Bachelor’s degree. A high school diploma or GED is not required. Previous Odyssey Project students are exempt from the eligibility requirements for this writing workshop. Learn more about the income eligibility requirement.

Workshop Dates

June 4–27, 2024

  • Tuesdays and Thursdays, 5:30-7:00 p.m.

This is a four-week creative writing workshop that meets twice a week at the Douglass Branch Library meeting room. Please note: this workshop does not offer course credit hours.


In partnership with Douglass Summer Youth Program, we are able to provide free childcare for the children of Odyssey Project students between the ages of 6 and 12 years old during class from 5:30 p.m.  to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday and Thursday evenings for the duration of the workshop at Douglass Center, located right next to the Douglass Branch Library. If you will need childcare, be sure to indicate this in the workshop application form.

Course Topics

This workshop offers the opportunity to access humanities education, amplify your voice within the community, and make connections between contemporary debates and issues in your life.

Participants will learn about multiple genres of creative writing through a variety of forms, such as:

  • poetry
  • fiction
  • creative non-fiction

By exploring topics through different kinds of writing, you will develop an understanding of the dynamic relationship between form and content. 

Workshop Instructor

Headshot of Professor Angel Garcia

Dr. Angel Garcia, the proud son of Mexican immigrants, is an assistant professor in the English Department at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. His work has been published in The American Poetry Review, McSweeney's, Crab Orchard Review, RHINO, Connotation Press, Tinderbox, Huizache, Miramar, Waxwing, The Acentos Review, The Packinghouse Review, and The Good Men Project among others. 

In addition to his creative and academic work, Angel is also the co-founder of the non-profit organization, Gente Organizada, that works to educate, empower and engage communities through grassroots organizing. 

Application Deadline

Submit your application by May 31, 2024.


We are eager to hear from you! Email or call Michelle Awad, Associate Director of Odyssey Project, at (217) 333-8122 with your questions on eligibility or the application.