A A Email Print Share

Inspired Teaching Retreat

Gratitude: The Link between Thanking and Thinking


May 16 - 17, 2018

If you are . . .

  • Feeling stressed about your academic career
  • Dealing with student disengagement and sense of entitlement
  • Seeking for ways to rediscover the pleasure of teaching
  • Looking for a fresh perspective

Come and meet with colleagues as we explore how gratitude can impact academic work and learning.

Retreat participants will read:
Wilson, J. T. (2016). Brightening the Mind: The Impact of Practicing Gratitude on Focus and Resilience in Learning. Journal of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, 16(4), 1-13.

WHO: Up to 20 members of the Duquesne teaching community.

WHAT: A two-day retreat on being an inspired university teacher sponsored and paid for by the Center for Teaching Excellence through the Frayer Faculty Instructional Fund.

WHERE: The Spiritan Center, 6230 Brush Run Road, Bethel Park, PA 15102

WHEN: Wednesday, May 16, 8:30 am - Thursday, May 17, 3 pm

HOW: People drive to the retreat center on their own (or carpool)

WHY: To relax, reflect, and re-energize in the company of colleagues who are deeply invested in teaching at Duquesne

LEADERS: Steven Hansen and Laurel Willingham-McLain (Center for Teaching Excellence) facilitate the retreat together with faculty members from across the University.

TO APPLY: 2018 registration is closed. 

Questions? Call 412 396 5177


Purpose of the retreat

  • To bring faculty together to learn from one another in a supportive environment where we can rekindle the spirit for teaching.
  • To completely get away from campus, offices, phones, and professional and home obligations.
  • To move out of a mode of doing to a time for being. To rest. To play. To contemplate.
  • To interact with Duquesne colleagues who represent different disciplines, perspectives, experiences, and teaching techniques.
  • To share your teaching ideas in a collaborative setting.
  • To engage in a time for reflection and activities that inspire creativity
  • To discuss common readings (these will be distributed a month prior to the retreat).
  • To foster a collaborative exchange of talent, ideas, and resources.

The retreat will take place at the Spiritan Center which offers the following:

  • Group meeting spaces
  • Simple individual rooms for sleeping; shared bathrooms
  • Meals in a sunny dining room
  • Garden and expansive green space
  • Access to Montour Trail – for walking, running, biking
  • Option to attend mass, or use chapel and prayer room
  • Accessible facilities

Past participants said...

"This retreat gives me hope that in academia we can actually claim wholeness bringing together the heart/mind/body."

"Thanks for the whole retreat experience. It was wonderfully refreshing and renewing, and added a new dimension to my experience as a faculty member at Duquesne."

"The retreat was an excellent get-away to focus on my teaching needs, but it was also spiritually and physically renewing. The time with peer teachers from different schools of the university was rewarding; nice to know that we share the same concerns. The time went too quickly."

"Sharing and knowing that we all have similar struggles we are dealing with is very encouraging."

"Really like peer instructors sharing creative teaching strategies. Love the humor shared at the campfire. The CTE faculty retreat was revitalizing - can't wait to use some of these strategies in the classroom."

"I felt like I was in a different world while I was there. The retreat was truly that - retreat. I felt free to think and reflect. I was amazed by the positive energy from the entire group. When I came home, I was inspired, more confident about my teaching and more at peace. I loved the structure and easy format. It was all very free flow for me and I felt accepted and nurtured, while also allowed to give back the same. I am definitely seeing my teaching in a different light. I feel more confident about my teaching aspirations and goals. I feel more confident because I gained a very supportive group of friends."