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Summer Hunker: Faculty Writing Retreat

image of looking in at retreat from open doorThe Center for Writing offers an interdisciplinary program of faculty and staff writing retreats, known as Writing Hunkers. The goal of Writing Hunkers is to create a supportive and productive community of scholarly writers from a wide variety of disciplines and a range of academic ranks at the University of Minnesota.

The 2019 Summer Faculty Writing Hunker is a five-day, interdisciplinary faculty/P&A writing retreat, tentatively scheduled for May 20–24, 2019. Applications will open in April 2019. If you have any questions, please email

The philosophy of “hunkering” together to write

Faculty and staff often find it difficult to find uninterrupted time to write with so many competing demands from their research, teaching, administrative, and service responsibilities. To help these researchers and teachers “hunker down” to write with their peers in a quiet, distraction-free space, the Center for Writing developed the week-long Summer Hunker: Faculty Writing Retreat (offered in late May or early June), along with late summer and winter break Hunker Reunions and spin-off “Hunkering” writing groups and spaces. These programs combine dedicated independent writing time with structured writing activities, writing and research consultations, and reflective lunchtime discussions about writing and teaching.

image of woman write by hand and with a computerWhy participate in writing hunkers?

As past participants have noted, a week of writing in community is transformational for supporting their work as writers and teachers.

“[I valued] having the ‘space’ (both physical and mental) to write. The community aspect was really positive—in fact perhaps the most important part. I loved the discussions and free writes. The Hunker really brought my interest in writing back.”

“I value especially the cross departmental sense of community, the suggestions I glean from the Hunker's conversations, and also the supportive environment for writing. When I am in a roomful of scholars who are there solely to write I feel an energy that keeps me focused on the task at hand. I started chapter 2 of my second book in the Hunker and now it is completed.”

“As a scholar, I am positive that this hunker will impact my ability to produce. As a teacher I have learned so many tidbits to pass to my students that I feel certain their writing will improve as well.”

Interested? Questions?

If you have any questions or would like to learn more about writing hunkers, please feel free to contact Dan Emery (

For additional support for your own writing and research, please see our Resources for scholarly writers page.

If you are a graduate student writer interested in writing support (or a faculty member advising graduate writers), please see the Dissertation Writing Retreat and Student Writing Support resources especially for graduate writers.