The Thesis Writers Retreat

May 20-23, 2024

The Thesis Writers Retreat

The Thesis Writers Retreat is a four-day program which gives graduate students structured time to work on their thesis or other writing projects. Professional writing consultants, research librarians, and thesis formatters will be on hand to provide academic support on request. During structured writing time, students will have the option to attend breakout sessions that will focus on topics ranging from academic writing tips to literature reviews. All structured writing time will be followed by a casual presentation with free lunch. Additional optional writing time is available in the afternoon.

The goal behind the Thesis Writers Retreat is to provide graduate students with the opportunity to prioritize their writing in an environment that fosters community, support, and productivity.

Attend the Thesis Writers Retreat at the Boettcher Mansion this year and give your writing the best view.

Brought to you by the Writing Center.

Applications submitted after the deadline will be added to the waitlist. 

Questions? E-mail Writing Center Director at



Applications submitted after the deadline will be added to the waitlist. 

Send questions to

Student Experience

This retreat has been incredible! You have no idea how hard it is to find the right balance between a quiet atmosphere, *some* human activity (but without distraction), and motivation. And I feel like there is some structure in that everyone there is meant to be focused and working, which I like. 

2019 Attendee

PhD Candidate, Colorado School of Mines

Student experience is a top priority for the Thesis Writers Retreat. Building on research from peer institutions and our inaugural 2019 retreat, we have designed our program to maximize writing time, to provide individual support, and to give participants a chance to learn and apply new skills that will help them achieve their writing goals.

What to Expect

A typical day will follow the outline below:

  • 8:30-9:00: Check-in with coffee and a light breakfast
  • 9:00-12:00: Structured writing time with academic support
  • 12:00-1:00: Lunch with a presentation by a guest speaker or panel
  • 1:30-1:50: Optional breakout session in a separate area from the retreat
  • 2:00-4:00: Optional free writing time

Breakout Sessions

Breakout sessions are lead by experts who will give a mini-workshop or presentation in the morning. The typical breakout session lasts 20 minutes and focuses on specific topics, from citation management to synthesizing your results. They are meant to provide participants with an optional break from writing, giving everyone the opportunity to learn and apply new skills at the Retreat.


Workshops take place from 12:00-1:00 and include a range of guest speakers, from faculty panels to writing professionals. Topics change year to year and can focus on a range of subjects, from communication with your advisor to planning a large writing project. These workshops are a chance to take a break, causally interact with your peers, and chat with presenters. Workshops include a catered lunch.

Additional Writing Resources

Online Technical Communication Center

The Online Technical Communication Center (OTCC) connects students and faculty with resources to develop their oral and written communication skills in STEM. All resources are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommerical 4.0 International license (CC-BY-NC). Our resources are designed to be shared and modified by the public to meet your individual communication needs.The OTCC is funded by the Colorado Department of Higher Education Open Education Resources grant and the Colorado School of Mines Writing Center. 

Click here to get to the OTCC.

Graduate Student Resources

The Writing Center’s goal is to support the entire Mines community, from students to faculty to alumni. As a resource for graduate students, we work with thesis writing, journal articles, and we work with GSG to provide thesis formatting reviews. We also hold graduate writing hours separate from our standard hours to cater to graduate student needs.

Click here to learn more about our graduate student resources.

The Writing Center hosts a signature event each year known as the Thesis Writers Retreat. Exclusive to graduate students, this retreat is a chance to write with your peers, learn from breakout sessions on a variety of topics, and work with professional writing consultants to best portray your research.


Our workshops are designed to address communication and writing issues commonly encountered in STEM. We tailor each workshop for our unique student body and faculty alike.

Please click here to learn more about our workshops.

Writing Across the Curriculum Research

From 1998 until 2011, Mines engaged in an initiative to develop best practices for writing across the curriculum. Please click here to read through our results and best practices.