I think that a disciplinary status (your own) makes many things a
great deal easier. At Memorial, we are a service much as catering
is a service and it excludes us from most of the committees and
other connections to the "academic" networks that people in "academic"
departments enjoy. I keep putting the word academic in "" because
I cannot imagine how the WC can be considered as anything but academic
yet it isn't. The WC is out of the loop for research funding, teaching
staff, as well as being (officially) outside of the conversations that
lead to curriculum planning and decisions about teaching writing assign-
ments. It is not a desirable situation at all--yet I am sure it would
be much worse if we were within the English dept.