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Notre Dame Press Hosts Publishing Boot Camp

On May 13-16, 2024, the University of Notre Dame Press hosted their second Publishing Boot Camp for graduate students in the humanities, fine arts, and social sciences. This intensive, four-day program was held in Hesburgh Library and blended seminar-style instruction, hands-on learning activities, and guidance from publishing professionals to enable students to explore career options in scholarly publishing and publishing their own work.

Experts from Notre Dame Press and guest speakers conducted sessions on:

  • Acquisitions and peer review
  • Book editing, design, and production
  • Marketing and sales strategies, costs, and margins
  • Author engagement
  • How to find a publishing job
  • The role of open access and accessibility in scholarly publishing

In addition to learning about scholarly publishing as a potential career pathway beyond traditional tenure-track positions, students also learned how to develop a book proposal, effectively work with a publisher, and market their articles and publications.

Publishing Boot Camp participants came from across Notre Dame’s graduate programs, including English, Sociology, Italian Studies, Department of Theology, Creative Writing, Department of History, Medieval Institute, and the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies. All the students stated they would recommend the Boot Camp to their peers, with over 85% stating they would highly recommend it.

Dr. Anne Crafton, who graduated from the Medieval Institute in May, said, “This program really demystified the somewhat terrifying world of academic publishing, giving me concrete steps to take towards presenting my own work for publication!”

Here are comments from other students about the program:

“Now I feel much more familiar with the world and process of publishing. I feel much more confident in my ability to land an entry-level publishing job! After this boot camp I have a much better sense of how I could use my skills in the academic publishing world.” —Mary Biese, ND ’24, Master of Theological Studies, Department of Theology

“This bootcamp provides a wonderful experience, which I can not only apply to my academic work but also unlocks more opportunities for the future career.” —Junrong Sheng, PhD Candidate, Department of Sociology

“Extremely helpful crash course into the life cycle of a manuscript: from acquisitions to production to marketing and sales! As an aspiring author I now understand in far more detail what goes into creating the kinds of books that I hope to write and how the best books are the result of successful collaboration between authors and people who work in all stages of the publishing process.” —Carly Sherman, PhD Student, Department of Sociology

The program was designed by Notre Dame Press Director Stephen Wrinn, Assistant Director Michelle Sybert, and Managing Editor Matthew Dowd. The 2024 Notre Dame Press Publishing Boot Camp was made possible thanks to the generous support of the Meruelo Family Center for Career Development – Graduate Career Services, the Institute for Scholarship in the Liberal ArtsThe Graduate School, the Department of History, and Hesburgh Libraries.

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