Where are they now? Nicole Woolley: The Right Tools

Dec 21, 2023 | Posted by the IEW Blog Team

Many consider writing useful only when pursuing a degree or career in the field of arts and humanities. In our latest installment of the “Where are they now?” series, Nicole Woolley testifies to how smoothly IEW can prepare one to write across the curriculum, even into the field of the sciences. This former IEW student shares her varied pursuits accomplished through the confidence gained from the toolbox given to her by IEW’s Structure and Style.

Tell me a little bit about yourself and your history with IEW.

I grew up in Davis, a smaller town in Northern California. I was homeschooled from kindergarten through high school. I first started IEW during middle school. I went to a hybrid program in seventh and eighth grade, and the English teacher there used the IEW program. Once I reached high school, I enrolled in IEW Online classes. As for hobbies, I was a competitive figure skater for about eleven years and just finished my last season this summer.

What do you do now?

Currently, I am a junior at the University of Nevada, Reno, studying general business with a minor in sports management. I transferred here in August of this year and have really enjoyed the semester so far. I have also continued my figure skating career as I became a coach about two years ago. Right now I am helping to choreograph a few group routines for the upcoming Christmas show at the ice rink in Reno.

What is your favorite part of IEW?

My favorite part of IEW is the toolbox. Stylistic techniques helped me visualize and remember different aspects to add to my writing. Before IEW my writing was bland and had absolutely no variety. I would use the same sentence openers and the same normal, boring verbs. However, after I learned how to use IEW’s dress-ups and sentence openers, my sentences and writing improved immensely.

Given that a lot of your writing experience in college has dealt with the sciences, how did IEW help you to write across the curriculum and not just in language arts?

Business writing has a lot to do with getting the audience’s attention and holding it while you tell them whatever piece of information you need to address. It is a lot less formal; however, a lot of the principles are the same. Learning how to write in a way that is interesting and captivating to the reader while also wording it in a way that is easy to understand are key components of business analysis writing. Once I understood the foundation of quality writing, I was able to translate that to any type of writing I have been assigned. I am not too sure how many research papers I will have to write after college, but I do know I will be writing countless emails, memos, proposals, and financial reports. Even this past week, I was learning about routine messages in my business communications class. For an assignment, I had to write a simple, short message relaying some sort of routine message. Even though it was not nearly as in depth as the IEW assignments, I still made sure to include strong verbs and a variety of sentence openers. This is also something that now comes second nature to me. It is not something I have to think about as much any more since I have been doing it for so long.

What connection do you see between your IEW training and your ability to communicate beyond writing?

Before taking IEW classes, I was an average student. There was no subject I really excelled at or loved more than another one. IEW made it so that I felt confident in writing a paper for any class. Whether that be for a business class, an economics class, or even an anthropology or history class, I gained confidence across the board. This changed my entire perspective on school and my education. It allowed me to take more advanced classes at a community college and graduate from high school early. The confidence that came from my writing impacted every aspect of my education.


As Nicole’s former IEW Online instructor explains, “IEW provides students with a toolbox of stylistic techniques and structural guidelines to help them write. Just as a carpenter can use the tools in a toolbox to build anything, a student with a toolbox of writing tools can use those tools to complete any writing assignment that comes their way.” Nicole believes she will encounter writing every day as she looks ahead to a career in sports management. She mused, “It may not be a long essay or research paper, but writing is a fundamental part of my career choice.” May Nicole’s testimonial encourage each of our students to shore up their IEW toolbox for all of their future endeavors!

by Katie Eades

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