Acclaimed Author Helps Grad Students at Rosenstiel School Sharpen Writing Skills

Dallas Murphy Dallas Murphy Click on image for larger version.

MIAMI — February 2, 2012 — Acclaimed author Dallas Murphy hosted a weeklong writing workshop for graduate students, January 23-27 at the University of Miami (UM) Rosenstiel School of Marine & Atmospheric Science. Twelve students brought drafts of papers, proposals and dissertations to discuss and review. They learned useful skills and gained new insights as to what forms a cohesive, high impact publication. The workshop, open to students in their third year and above in all Divisions across the School, will be repeated in January 2013.

Dr. Lisa Beal who organizes the workshop said, “This is the third year Dallas has held a writing workshop and it's really become an indispensable resource for our graduate students. His unique background as a professional in the literary world; as a researcher of history, culture, and the ocean; and now as a communicator of science, makes him able to teach our students about ‘keeping the deal with your reader’ on their own terms, using their own articles and proposals.”

Students who participated in the workshop were: Rachel Sliverstein, Noelle Van Ee, Estelle Chaussard, Pierpaolo Marchesini, Jingshuang Xue, Wilson Mendoza, Aaron Adams, Will Komaromi, Kelly Jackson, Zhujun Li, Marcela Ulate, and Amanda Oehlert. Several faculty advisors, including Drs. Paquita Zuidema, Hans Graber, Andrew Baker, and Gregor Eberli attended the workshop to augment discussions of more technical writing questions that arose.

“The workshop is awesome!” said Applied Marine Physics student Jinshuang Xue. “It teaches you how to process and structure your papers, and how to express your research concisely.”

Dallas Murphy has participated in nine oceanographic cruises, four as NSF-funded Outreach Coordinator for which he wrote over 500 words a day in Daily Journals for school children and the public, describing life at sea and explaining ocean science ( He is also the author of two plays, four novels and two non-fiction books about the sea, including To Follow the Water, a book about the Gulf Stream, oceans, and climate. He conducts Writing Workshops for graduate students at the Max Planck Institut für Meereskunde (Germany), the University of Bergen (Norway), and the UM Rosenstiel School.

“Dallas is very good at explaining how the writer-reader relationship plays a major role in science writing,” said Marine Geology and Geophysics student Estelle Chaussard. “I also enjoyed hearing about what other Rosenstiel School students are doing, and learning from them, as well.”

To sign up for the next writing seminar, or to sign up your student, contact Dr. Lisa Beal at

About the University of Miami’s Rosenstiel School
The University of Miami is the largest private research institution in the southeastern United States. The University’s mission is to provide quality education, attract and retain outstanding students, support the faculty and their research, and build an endowment for University initiatives. Founded in the 1940’s, the Rosenstiel School of Marine & Atmospheric Science has grown into one of the world’s premier marine and atmospheric research institutions. Offering dynamic interdisciplinary academics, the Rosenstiel School is dedicated to helping communities to better understand the planet, participating in the establishment of environmental policies, and aiding in the improvement of society and quality of life. For more information, please visit

dallas murphy •  workshop •  dr. lisa beal •  graduate students •  research •