School of Graduate Studies

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Dissertation on the Lake

"Dissertation on the Lake came at a very anxiety ridden time in my writing – I needed to make substantial revisions to one of my theoretical chapters and I accomplished that during the week. It helped me relax and focus on my task".

DISSERTATION ON THE LAKE, is a five day, four night writing retreat on the shores of Elbow Lake, 30 minutes north of Kingston.  This program was first offered last year by the School of Graduate Studies to provide graduate students the opportunity to write in a relaxing and inspiring environment, setting aside the distractions of daily life at home. Ten two-bedroom cabins will provide accommodation and some writing space. A central meeting room is available for writing. Three meals a day will be provided.  

Space is limited and preference will be given to those who have not participated before and PhD students.  

The day will be loosely structured around two writing sessions: three hours in the morning and three hours in the afternoon (you can always write for longer!)  Although writing will be the primary activity, there will be ample opportunities for relaxation including swimming, canoeing and hiking (all unsupervised).

Hold the Date?

Dissertation on the Lake for 2017 will be held mid to late August.   Exact week will be advised in the new year.

Daily Schedule

Although this is a more informal writing event than the Dissertation Boot Camp, the retreat will follow this schedule: 

Monday:

8:30am Departure by van from Queen’s Campus (outside Gordon Hall)

9:00am Arrival and introduction to the Elbow Lake facility and the retreat.  Settle into cabins.

10:00am Writing begins.

12:00pm – 2:00 pm Lunch (make your own sandwich) and Recreation

2:00pm – 4:45 pm Writing Time

4:45pm - 5:00 pm Goal Setting for the next day

6:30 pm on.  Meal and recreation

Tuesday:

8:00am Breakfast/Recreation

9:00am -12:00pm Writing

12:00pm – 2:00 pm Lunch (make your own sandwich) and Recreation

2:00pm – 4:45 pm Writing Time

4:45pm-5:00 pm Goal Setting for the next day

6:30 pm on.  Meal and recreation

Wednesday:

8:00am Breakfast/Recreation

9:00am -12:00pm Writing

12:00pm – 2:00 pm Lunch (make your own sandwich) and Recreation

2:00pm – 4:45 pm Writing Time

4:45pm - 5:00 pm Goal Setting for the next day

6:00 pm -8:00pm  - Family BBQ.  

8:00pm - all visitors depart

Thursday:

8:00am Breakfast/Recreation

9:00am -12:00pm Writing

12:00pm – 2:00 pm Lunch (make your own sandwich) and Recreation

2:00pm – 4:45 pm Writing Time

4:45pm - 5:00 pm Goal Setting for the next day

6:30 pm on.  Meal and recreation

Friday:

8:00am Breakfast/Recreation

9:00am Writing

12:00pm – 1:00pm Lunch (make your own sandwich)

1:00pm - 3:00pm Writing Time

3:00pm-4:30pm Recreation and Pack-up or More Writing

4:30pm-4:45pm Conclusions, Debrief and Departure. Arrival in Kingston around 5:30 pm.

Cost and Practicalities 

Travel to the retreat, accommodation and 3 meals a day (participants will collectively prepare the meals) will be provided.  Your contribution will be $75 (2015 cost, may vary from year to year), based on 2 to 4 person occupancy per cabin.   Please see the Elbow Lake website for information about the facility. There will be a roster for cooking and tidy-up for each meal.  Formal writing consultations are not part of this event.

If you are interested in participating, you will need to complete the Registration form (Appendix A - Word  16 KB) and send to Colette Steer at steerc@queensu.ca. Applications are now available and will close 31st July 2016.  Completing this registration form does not ensure participation if the number of registrations exceed spaces available.  We will confirm participation by the end of July each year.

Once participation is confirmed by the SGS, you must read and complete the SGS Information Form (Appendix B - Word 24KB) and send to Colette Steer at steerc@queensu.ca by 19th August. You will also be given instructions to go online to complete the University Off-Campus Safety form. On arrival to the Queen’s University Biological Station you will be asked to sign the Camps waiver form!  Yes a lot of form filling, but necessary for any activity off campus.

To Register - will be available in April

If you are interested in participating, please complete the Registration form (Appendix A - Word 16KB ) and send to Colette Steer at steerc@queensu.ca. Completing this registration form does not ensure participation if the number of registrations exceed spaces available.  We will confirm registration by the end of July each year.

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