Virtual Dissertation Retreat – Summer 2020

In light of the university’s alternate operations, The Writing Center invites graduate students to participate in a virtual dissertation retreat this June!

All Ph.D. candidates at any stage in the dissertation process are eligible to participate.  For more information, see below.

To request a spot:  Email Rob Patterson, director of The Writing Center at  Please include information regarding your program, where you are in the dissertation process, and a timeline for the work you hope to complete this summer.  The deadline to apply is Monday, May 25, 2020.

Cost:  The retreat is free to participants.

What:  Twelve dissertation writers from across the university coming together (virtually) for two weeks of concentrated dissertation-writing time each morning in a supportive group setting:

  • Morning Zoom meeting with brief warm-up activities designed to jump start writing
  • Focused, sustained work on dissertations in scheduled blocks of writing time
  • Two online discussions on issues and strategies related to dissertation writing (each Wednesday around lunchtime)
  • Priority access to one-on-one dissertation consultations with Writing Center staff
  • Advice and support from fellow graduate students
  • Brief cool-down activities designed to facilitate the next day’s writing (Zoom meeting)
  • Goal-setting and supportive accountability

When:  Mondays through Fridays, June 15-June 26, 2020.  We begin each day at 9:00 and end at 12:00.  One-on-One support available each afternoon.

Where:  Online and in the comfort of your own home!

Why:  To help dissertation writers

  • Maintain their writing momentum over the summer, OR
  • Gain momentum from a less-than-productive spring and head into the summer having produced quality writing
  • Build supportive, interdisciplinary relationships among dissertation writers
  • Learn balanced and effective writing strategies and habits that continue post-degree
  • Learn how to provide productive feedback to peers

Questions:  Email