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MWP Invitational Leadership Institute

The application process for the 2021 Invitational Institute has ended. Fill out our interest form if you would like us to contact you when we begin accepting applications for our next Invitational Institute.

Link to past summer institutesFormerly known as the Summer Institute, the Invitational Leadership Institute is a graduate course held at the University of Minnesota every other year. In order to adjust to an online learning space, the Leadership Institute has shifted from a three-week intensive during the summer to meeting roughly twice every three weeks from the end of June to the middle of November, 2021. Teachers (K-college) are invited to share best practices, engage in critical discussions, conduct research into current theories of literacy and pedagogy, and improve their own skills as writers. Invited Fellows receive graduate university credit paid for by the Minnesota Writing Project.



  • Tuesday, May 11, 5:30–7:30pm (Orientation)
  • Thursdays, June 24, July 1, 15, 22, 29, and August 5, 9am–12pm (six sessions during the summer)
  • a total of 2.5 hours of self-directed online time on Saturday, July 31 (to attend the virtual National Writing Project Midwest Conference)
  • Mondays, August 23, 30, September 13, 27, and October 11, 25, and November 15, 4:30–7:30pm (seven sessions during the fall)

The MWP Invitational Leadership Institute is the heart of the Minnesota Writing Project. Its purposes are

  1. to identify successful teachers of writing across all curriculum areas who will be effective teachers of other teachers
  2. to identify approaches to the teaching of writing and the uses of writing-to-learn in all subject areas that have been successful in real classrooms and that add to the profession’s knowledge
  3. to involve successful teachers in their own writing so that they can better help their students
  4. to make current research in the teaching of writing available to teachers 

The key elements of the Leadership Institute: Teacher as Writer, Learner, and Researcher, are introduced during the retreat. Teacher as Writer is explored during the summer session while Teacher as Researcher is developed in the fall session. Teacher as Learner is a consistent focus throughout the entire Institute."

The Institute offers participants the opportunity to

learn from other teachers about the teaching of writing

anticipate challenges for teaching in the future: authentic assessment, multicultural writing concerns, computer-assisted instruction, collaborative learning, whole language, writing across the curriculum, the needs of diverse populations

discover more about your own writing process

become part of a community of teacher-writers

explore current theory and practice in the teaching of writing

consider ways you can share your strengths with other teachers as a consultant

spend a significant portion of time at the Institute honing your skills as writers (an anthology of creative and action research pieces is published)

earn graduate credit through the University of Minnesota; CEUs also available 

Past Summer Institutes

Learn more about past summer institute participants, their writing, and their teaching.