Meet Conor Murphy, 826DC’s new After-School Writing Lab Assistant! Conor helps our After-School Writing Lab run smoothly, both working with students and helping out behind the scenes.
Conor went to Duke Ellington High School here in DC and spent the last decade working as a literacy specialist at a nearby elementary school! Youth learning and liberation are important to Conor and we’re all thrilled to have his thoughtful presence at 826DC.
When he’s not here supporting young writers, Conor loves to read, play strategy games, and spend time with his friends and child.
We hope you all get a chance to get to know him better! In the meantime, see below for a Q&A with 826DC’s newest staff member.
Name: Conor Murphy
Title: After-School Writing Lab Assistant
Hometown: Springfield, VA
What drew you to 826DC?
I’ve been intrigued by the After-School Writing Lab for years, since back when the storefront was still about dinosaurs. 826DC’s mission to share the power and joy of writing with any and all students while keeping the students centered and empowered is everything I dreamed of in a program.
What was your favorite subject in elementary school?
In elementary school, it would have been science when I was younger and literacy when I was in older elementary. I have always loved learning about the world around me and how things work, but my class got to do a class production of Romeo & Juliet in 5th grade and that was the highlight of my elementary school experience.
What book would you love to read again for the first time?
That’s a tough one; there are so many that deserve the “first-time-again” treatment. Even being forced to choose, I can only narrow it down to two: The Fifth Season by N. K. Jemisin and Harrow the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir. Both are incredible examples of perspective being an integral aspect of the story and themes and both are devastatingly beautiful books.
What inspired you to get involved in this kind of work, and why do you think it’s so important?
Working with children always felt like an inevitability to me. Even as a kid, I loved teaching, sharing the joy of discovery, making younger kids laugh, and reading books to my siblings and classmates. Teaching reading and writing has always been somewhat selfish; I love reading and writing more than almost anything in the world and I want as many people as possible to have the opportunity to experience that love for themselves. Whether they end up loving stories and learning as much as I do is irrelevant so long as they have the opportunity—the choice—in the first place.