Established by Dr. Robert D. Whittemore at Lewis & Clark College in 1987, the Fir Acres Workshop was the first two-week residency program of the National Writing & Thinking Network, (then including a three week program at Simon’s Rock College of Bard of Great Barrington, Massachusetts).
Founded within a collaboration between the Institute for Writing & Thinking at Bard College and what was then Lewis & Clark College’s Northwest Writing Institute, the Bingham Trust enabled the Fir Acres workshop to become a model for a third site at Lake Forest College. All three sites presently continue to provide summer immersion for young writers who self-select in applying for the opportunity to explore the relationship between writing, thinking, and learning.
As at all three sites of the National Writing & Thinking Network, the Fir Acres Workshop is modeled after the innovative three-week Workshop in Language & Thinking, required of all entering students at Bard College since the fall of 1980.
At the same time, the Fir Acres Workshop also draws on the unique sense of place provided by the exquisitely maintained Lewis & Clark College campus and the ever-expanding virtues of one of the great cities of the Pacific Northwest, Portland, Oregon.
As such, Fir Acres provides:
- a writing experience with distinguished faculty who share a common teaching method;
- a summer enrichment experience that will enhance subsequent school year performance for its participants;
- a community of writers that offers an on-campus residential experience as a preview of college life, as well as writing experience off-campus in the city of Portland.