Jean A. Grace


Senior Lecturer,
Director, The William S. Dietrich II Institute for Writing Excellence
CL 617-J


Jean A. Grace is the director of the new William S. Dietrich II Institute for Writing Excellence and the assistant chair of the English Department.

She was the founding director of the University of Pittsburgh’s Public and Professional Writing program, and she led the program for 16 years, through its start as a certificate program and to its development into a successful major. She has taught PPW courses like Writing for the Public, Integrating Writing and Design, Written Professional Communication, and Advanced Research and Documentary Writing.

She served as the Writing Center's associate director for 18 years, and was the associate director or acting director of the Composition Program for 4 years.

She is a recipient of the Pitt English Department's Distinguished Teaching Award. She also taught writing in Pitt’s College of Business Administration and graduate classes at both the Heinz School of Public Policy and Management and the Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon University.

Jean has created publications for a number of foundations and nonprofits; her work was particularly focused on end-of-life care policy, nursing policy, and nonprofit administration. These remain areas that she is interested in.

She leads Dissertation Camp (with Ellen Smith) and developed a workshop on professional writing for humanities graduate students who want to explore alternatives to tenure-stream academic employment.

Jean earned her PhD in English at Pitt. Her dissertation focused on the teaching of professional writing.