Kick off a productive summer of writing with the Graduate School’s three-day Dissertation Boot Camp June 23-25. This summer, Boot Camp is going online, so brew a pot of coffee and wear your pajamas and fuzzy bunny slippers if that’s how you write best!

Instead of gathering in person, Boot Camp participants will gather virtually using Microsoft Teams this summer for three days of supported writing, tutoring, guidance on writing process, and camaraderie with each other. There’s no participation fee this year, so Boot Camp is free for all participants. However, we will need to cap registration at 40 to make an online event manageable. Apply below!

What is Dissertation Boot Camp?

Boot Camp helps students make significant progress on their dissertations during three days of structured writing. With an intense focus on your own writing, Boot Camp provides structure and motivation to help students overcome common roadblocks in the dissertation process. If you’re struggling to find time and space to get going with your work, or just wish for a little more support as you do so, this program is for you.

When is Boot Camp?

Tuesday, June 23, Wednesday June 24, and Thursday June 25, 2020
Session times are 8:30 a.m.– 5:00 p.m.
Application Deadline: June 18

Who is Boot Camp for?

Eligible PhD students:
  1. Are in good academic standing.
  2. Will have achieved Dissertator status by June 15, 2020.
  3. Should have passed the proposal stage and be in the write-up phase.

What should I expect at Boot Camp?

  1. Three days of writing, eight hours each, spent focused on your dissertation
  2. A structured day with periods of quiet writing and regular breaks
  3. Guidance on writing process from faculty experts
  4. Introduction to goal setting and effective writing strategies
  5. Optional breaktime exercise activities to stay fresh
  6. Writing tutors available on-line every afternoon through UWM’s Writing Center
  7. A community of fellow dissertators at UWM

What do I need for Boot Camp?

  1. A private space where you can write for long periods and join discussions with other participants.
  2. Your own computer for writing.
  3. Internet access.
  4. Microsoft Teams installed on your computer. Teams can be installed on the computer you use for writing or on a second machine (such as an iPad or cell phone) that you use alongside it.
  5. A speaker and microphone on the device running Teams.
  6. An optional webcam if you want to be able to share video during our discussions.
  7. A firm resolution not to check email, texts, social networks, or the internet during writing periods!


The cost for participation is free! All UWM Dissertators are invited to apply. Eligible participants will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. Boot Camp will be limited to a maximum of 40 participants. Application Deadline: June 18.

To apply, click the button below to download a PDF application. Save the form to your computer, complete it onscreen, and email it to Susan Wade (

Download Boot Camp application

To be accepted, you must commit to attend all sessions on all three days. If you know you have a substantial conflict during the Boot Camp hours, we ask that you defer until another time.


We are happy to provide more information and discuss the program with you. Please reach out by email to our professional development coordinator, Susan Wade (

Call for Faculty Assistance

Please let your graduate students know about the program, and encourage Dissertators to participate.