MFA Degree Program Application: Checkout 2022 Procedures & Updates : Current School News

MFA Degree Program Application: Checkout 2022 Procedures & Updates

Filed in Education by on July 24, 2022

MFA Degree Program Application: Fine arts careers, allow for a high degree of freedom, and self-expression and also offer the constant challenge to produce original and influential work. Artists who want to become experts in their art form may be interested in a Master of Fine Arts degree, commonly known as an MFA. MFA Degree Program Application

An MFA degree signifies that a professional artist has completed a series of rigorous courses in his or her art form and signals that someone is adept at his or her chosen craft.

Whether it is a technologically intensive field like graphic design or film editing or a technology-free art form like drawing. “MFA Degree Program Application”

An MFA is a graduate-level credential, meaning that before you get an MFA, you typically need a college degree. “MFA Degree Program Application”

MFA degree recipients say their graduate school education allowed them to refine their artistic philosophy and creative techniques while elevating the quality of their art to make it more unique, polished and interesting.

In addition, MFA degree holders say having an MFA has given them the credentials necessary to teach courses in their art form at colleges and universities, and that it gives them sufficient knowledge of their art discipline to offer thoughtful critiques.

The MFA in Creative Writing

Many writers interested in continuing their study of Creative Writing beyond their bachelor’s degree pursue a Master of Fine Arts degree (MFA) in Creative Writing.

I design MFA programs to provide writers with the theoretical framework, practical skills, and critical community support to help them further hone their craft and develop the expertise needed to become published writers. 

MFA programs, however, are very competitive, with only a small percentage of applicants getting into the programs of their choice each year.

Putting together a successful application takes considerable planning, research, focus, and time. “MFA Degree Program Application”

From conducting research on which program is right for you, to preparing the materials you need, to perfecting your creative writing sample and statement of purpose, to getting letters of recommendation from your favourite professors, to actually sending in your applications: all this can take from six months to a year from start to finish.

If gaining a Master of Fine Arts degree interests you, then this guide is a great place to start. Below are some tips on how to succeed in that process.

An Overview

You will be expected to do the following as part of applying to MFA programs

1. Plan the overall process and create a timeline

2. Research MFA programs / Decide where to apply

3. Assemble your application materials, including:

4. Creative Writing sample (10-20 pages of fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, etc.)

5. Statement of Purpose

6. Letters of Recommendation from current or past professors (3 total)

7. Undergraduate transcripts

8. Curriculum Vitae or Resumé

9. GRE test scores (if required by any of the programs to which you plan to apply)

10.  Application fees

11. Submit your applications and required materials by the deadlines (see above)

Planning and Research

Planning and research is one criterion you need before applying for the MFA in creative writing. Below are a few steps or instructions you need to adhere to for a successful application:

1. Your Application Timeline.

The very first thing you’ll want to do is create a timeline for your application process. (See “Creating Your Timeline” below for some more specific info.)

Knowing that most application deadlines are between December 1st and February 1st (for students who want to begin in the fall semester).

You will want to get started on everything at least six months prior to the earliest deadlines: i.e. you’ll want to start the process in the spring of your Junior year (assuming you plan to start an MFA in the fall after graduating.

If you think you might take a year off after graduation then you can begin in the spring of your senior year.)

As part of your timeline, figure out when you need to start the various pieces of your completed application packet, and when you want to have them completed.

Additional Information

For instance, knowing that it will take time to revise the stories or poems you want to include as your Creative Writing Sample.

That as part of this process you’ll want to get feedback toward revision from a trusted friend and/or a willing (and generous) professor, plan to complete your first drafts of these no later than September, and possibly earlier.

Your friend or professor will need time to read and provide feedback for you. And then you will need time to revise, etc.

Similarly, knowing that your professors will need time to write your letters of recommendation and that there’s no guarantee that every professor you ask will do this, start asking your favourite professors for letters early in your process, perhaps in the spring semester of your Junior year.

Make yourself a timeline, give yourself deadlines, and do your best to stick to these deadlines! “MFA Degree Program Application”

2. Research

Research

After completing your timeline, your next step in some ways is the most difficult: doing research to decide where you want to apply.

Maybe you already have a program or two in mind. If so, that’s great. If not, our best advice is to start with a resource right here at UTEP: Your Creative Writing professors.

Who are your favourite current or past Creative Writing professors? Send each an email, or drop by their office hours.

Simply let them know that you’re interested in applying to MFA programs and that you would like their advice.

All of your professors here will have expert advice and can point you to programs that they admire, and/or in which they think you would be a good fit.

Of course, there are other factors you should think about aside from your professors’ recommendations. Here are a few things to consider as you’re looking at various MFA programs:

3. Genres

Does the program offer courses in all genres, or specialise in a few genres (poetry, fiction, creative non-fiction, children’s lit, screenwriting, gaming, etc)?

Does it offer a variety of courses in the genre you’re interested in? Does the program have faculty who specialise in and/or publish in the genre (s) you want to study?

Faculty. Are you interested in writing by one or more members of the faculty in the program? (You may need to do some research to find and read some work by the program’s faculty.

Each faculty member’s bio or faculty page will list their most prominent or most recent work.) If you’re really intrigued, ask to be connected with faculty, if possible, to sit in on a class or for a one-on-one conversation about the program.

Conversely, are there writers (perhaps that you’ve encountered through your Creative Writing classes, or by reading contemporary poetry/fiction journals) that you really admire? Look them up and find out where they teach!

4. Location

Consider where the school is located. Is it somewhere you’d like to live? Is it affordable to live there? Is there a literary arts scene (or music scene, or performance scene, or visual arts scene)?

Do you have connections to anyone in this location, or will you need to form a new community upon joining the program? (Keep in mind that an MFA program is a great and easy place to form a new community!)

Is the program online or in-person? Do you want to move to a new city and start over, or would you like to be close to family and friends?

5. Finances

Does the program offer Teaching Assistantships or Fellowships (or some other kind of yearly stipend) to its MFA students? (It should.)

Does the program (and/or the University) offer grants/scholarships/tuition waivers to help defer the costs of graduate school?

All does not cover how much the above, and what is the remaining amount, considering tuition, fees, and cost of living, that you would have to cover out of pocket?

Are you willing to take out loans to cover the rest? How much aid will you receive from FAFSA? Contact the school’s Financial Aid office for more information and to learn about additional resources.

4. Program Specifics

Every student will have their own unique wants and needs from an MFA program, so consider what you value and are looking for. Some things you might consider:

  • The reputation of the university and/or the program
  • The size of the program
  • The culture of the program and the competitiveness among classmates
  • What do the graduates of the program do after completing the program
  • Access to faculty and class size
  • Opportunities to take part in reading series or in the production of a literary magazine; etc.

5. Get in Touch

Talk to MFA students currently in that program to get a sense of what their experience has been, the strengths and weaknesses of the program.

What they like and don’t like about the program and/or the location, about the camaraderie among fellow students, why they chose that program, etc.

To get in touch with current students, you can usually e-mail the program, tell them you’re considering applying, and that you’d like to be put in touch with current students.

6. You Are Free to Visit

If you have the time and resources, visit the programs you’re most interested in (in person or virtually) to get a feel for the campus, the people, the program, and the town/city where it’s located.

If visiting in person, let the program know ahead of time that you’re coming. Make sure it’s a good time to visit (you don’t want to visit while they’re on break!).

And ask if you can sit in on a class and/or meet with current students, etc. This is a great way to get a sense of whether you would fit in and feel comfortable there.

Finally, you’ll want to apply to at least three, and up to eight programs, depending on your resources. (The more MFA programs you apply to, the greater chance you have of being admitted to one.

The more MFA programs you apply to, the more you’ll be paying in application fees, which can be quite expensive.)

Recent alumni from UTEP’s Creative Writing Department have had success getting into a number of MFA programs that you might want to consider as well:

➣  The University of Arizona,

➣ University of New Mexico

➣  The New School

➣  The Art Institute of Chicago

➣  The University of Pittsburgh

➣ Emerson College

➣  Simmons University

➣  The NMSU

READ ALSO!!!

Assembling Your Application

Assembling Your Application

Once you’ve made your selections and you know where you want to apply, you’ll need to start assembling your application materials.

The following is a list of materials commonly requested as part of an application to an MFA program in Creative writing:

Three Letters of Recommendation

It is best to ask for letters of recommendation from current/previous professors who can speak to your writing abilities, your growth as a student, your participation and contributions to the classroom, and why they believe you are the right candidate for an MFA program.

It is important to ask professors whom you know and in whose classes you did well. Also, consider your audience.

Since you’re applying to Creative Writing programs, you’ll want letters primarily from Creative Writing professors. (One letter from a professor in a related field, such as Literature, would be okay, as long as the others are in the field you’re applying to.)

If you’ve done a special project with a professor, like an Honors Thesis, or If you’ve taken multiple classes with a particular professor you like and admire, and whose classes have been important to you, then she or he or they should be on the top of your list.

Additional Information

Think ahead. Connecting with professors during your experience as an undergraduate Creative Writing major; through class participation, attending office hours, and staying in touch even after your class with them ends

This will help you build relationships with them and thus provide your recommenders with a deeper understanding of you and your writing as they prepare their letters.

Always ask for letters at least two to three months prior to your earliest application deadline. (It never hurts to ask earlier rather than later.)

Your professors are very busy, and while they always want to help if they can, good letters of recommendation require a lot of time and effort to prepare.

You do not want to rush them. Make sure you provide for them the names of each school/program you’re applying to and the deadlines for each.

➣  Statement of Purpose (or Statement of Intent).

Precisely what any program asks for here can vary, but most programs request a writer’s statement and/or a statement of purpose (of approximately 500-1000 words) that speaks about your writing influences and goals.

What makes you distinctive as a writer; your academic and literary interests; why you think their program is right for you; and your further professional goals beyond the MFA program.

While the Creative Writing Sample is often the most important document, you submit as part of your MFA application.

The Statement of Purpose is still crucial, as it can often sway an admissions committee (who are weighing your application against many others).

Who may realize from your statement that you are truly interested in their program and what their program offers and that you will therefore be a good fit there.

What this means, however, is that you shouldn’t simply send the exact same Statement of Purpose to each program you’re applying to. Rather, you should tailor each Statement of Purpose to the program you’re sending it to.

Make sure you address the topics the program asks you to address, of course, but also make sure you talk about the specific aspects of their program that excite you:

➣ Particular courses that are offered

➣  Faculty members, you’re excited to work with and why

➣  Speciality tracks or sub-programs within the program (such as screenwriting, literary translation, children’s literature,) etc.

All that you want to let the admissions committee know is that, you know something about their program, and that you know why you want to be there.

➣ Creative Writing Sample

A Creative Writing Sample will be 10-20 pages of your best poems, short stories, excerpts from novels, etc.

In an MFA application, this is often the most important document you submit, and an admissions committee will often start by looking at this sample of your work.

If they like it, they’ll move you forward and look at the rest of your application. If they don’t, that’ll be the end. “MFA Degree Program Application”

As such: do not simply dust off the work that got you an “A” in your recent Creative Writing classes and send it in. You’ll want to work on these, revise, and work on them some more.

Get feedback from a trusted friend or CRW classmate, or from a professor (who has agreed ahead of time to give you feedback).

Take their constructive criticism seriously (they’re trying to help! They want you to succeed!) and revise, revise, revise. Make your creative writing sample the absolute best you can.

Once you’ve decided on the stories or poems you want to submit, have revised it all to the point where you (and your trusted readers) think it’s ready, and you’re ready to put the sample together, you’ll want to think about how to order the work you’ve chosen for your writing sample.

It’s often best to lead with the strongest works first, the next strongest samples last, and the least strong samples in the middle.

Finally, keep in mind that quality is more important than quantity (as long as you provide the minimum number of pages they request).

➣ Transcripts

Official Transcripts are official legal documents listing the courses you took at the university and the grades you received.

The university or college where you completed your undergraduate coursework issues these, usually by the University Registrar’s office.

Unofficial transcripts show the same information, but do not have official legal standing. Most programs you’re applying to will require official transcripts.

To request your official transcripts from UTEP, contact the Division of Student Affairs Office of Registration and Records.

➣ Application Fees

Most programs charge an application fee to apply to their program. These fees cover the time and effort needed to process and review applications.

These are typically between $50-$100 per application, and sometimes more. So, the more programs you apply to, the more you’ll be spending on application fees.

You’ll need to think about this ahead of time and start saving if necessary.

Some less commonly requested materials Include:

1. Curriculum Vitae or Resume.

A Curriculum vitae (CV) is a complete list of education, jobs, volunteer work, professional experiences, publications, public performances, awards, etc.

Whereas a resume is usually a brief, one-page snapshot of all the above, highlighting your skills and past job responsibilities. You can find examples of both online.

2. Critical Writing Samples.

A 10-20 page sample of critical/analytical/research writing. Such a writing sample would be more commonly requested for applications to MA or PhD programs in more traditional academic programs, like literature, history, Communications, or sociology.

But, you never know. If you are applying to a PhD program in Creative Writing, however, you will probably be asked for both a creative writing sample AND a critical writing sample.

3. GRE Test Scores.

The Graduate Record Exam (GRE) is like the SAT test (which you may have taken in preparation to apply to college) but is for those who want to study at the master’s level or beyond after finishing their bachelor’s degree.

The “general” GRE test is supposed to measure your aptitude for graduate-level study, while specific GRE tests for specific disciplines (such as Literature or History) measure your preparation for advanced study in that discipline.

In either case, though, one can dramatically improve their performance on these tests by studying for them with a test-prep book or app.

Important to note is that few MFA programs require GRE scores, but some do. Best to do your research ahead of time here and figure out if any of the programs you’re interested in require the GRE.

If they do, and if you still want to apply to them, you’ll need to schedule a GRE test time far in advance of those application deadlines.

You can get more info on taking the GRE at the GRE website. “MFA Degree Program Application”

On the other hand, you may decide that you don’t want to apply to any programs requiring the GRE, and therefore eliminate programs that require it from your list.

Creating Your Timeline

Creating Your Timeline

Below is a general guideline for putting together your own application timeline. Make sure you check with the programs you’re applying to for specific dates for everything below.

➣ 12 months before applying (winter of Junior year)–Begin researching MFA programs

➣ 2 months before applying–Ask for Letters of Recommendation 

➣ September 1st – May 15th: Applications Due (See MFA Programs for Exact Deadlines)

Many programs have deadlines for the first few weeks of January (for students intending to begin in the fall of that year).

However, some of the most competitive programs have deadlines as early as September, and others have deadlines as late as May. Start researching early so that you don’t miss these crucial deadlines.

➣ October 1st–June 30th: FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid

READ ALSO!!!

FASFA opens for applications on October 1st and closes on June 30th. Submit your FAFSA as soon as possible.

Some schools have priority deadlines or hard deadlines before June 30th or give awards until funds are depleted. Check with your school to see when their deadlines are. Apply to FAFSA Here.

Rolling–Applying for scholarships

Scholarships have deadlines throughout the year. It is recommended to research and applying for scholarships in the fall prior to the year you are seeking funding.

Check with the programs you are applying to learn of additional scholarships and funding they may have. Contact the UTEP Office of Fellowships and Awards for help.

March–July–Accept Offer (see schools for exact deadlines)

You will get letters of acceptance or rejection anytime between March and July. Hopefully, you’ll have received an acceptance or two (or more).

Review offer letters and notify programs of decisions. Some programs require a non-refundable deposit upon acceptance, while others do not. 

(If you are unsuccessful in getting into the programs you applied to, it is okay to call and ask to speak to (or email) the chair of the admissions committee simply to thank them for their time and consideration, and to (politely) ask what was lacking in your application. This can help should you decide to try again next year.)

Remember to say “Thank You”

Send a follow up “thank you” card to the professors who wrote your letter of recommendation. And, don’t forget to keep your recommenders in the loop as you decide.

Share with them when you are accepted into programs, and what your ultimate decisions are so that they can celebrate with you or provide support if you decide to apply to additional programs in the future.

Additional Application Tips

Build time into your application timeline to have all of your materials reviewed by trusted classmates, fellow writers, and/or UTEP’s University Writing Center.

Receiving feedback on (and then revising!) your creative/ critical writing samples and statement of purpose is crucial to assembling quality application materials.

Carefully proofread everything you submit. You are applying for a writing program, after all. You don’t want to send writing that is riddled with typos and grammatical errors.

Apply to multiple programs. While you may have an ideal program in mind, it is good to have several options available in case they do not admit you into your first choice. 

Circumstances change your priorities, or so that you can compare the various offers in the event you are accepted to multiple programs.

Universities That Has Fully Funded MFA Programs

Universities That Has Fully Funded MFA Programs

There are a lot of different MFA programs in the country, but there really are only a small number that are fully funded.

For your convenience, we’ve set out to put together a list of some of the best MFA  programs in the country that is fully funded.

1. University of Florida, Gainesville

Stipend amount offered: $18,067

Benefits Offered: Tuition

The webpage for the MFA program in creative writing at the University of Florida, Gainesville greets you with a promise that if the program were half as warm and welcoming as the text on the website, you’d be happy here.

As one of the oldest writing programs in the country, it is one of the best-kept secrets of the academic writing world.

They are ranked highly by Poets & Writers and have a very high job placement rate. This program believes that good writing comes not just from talent and practice, but also from the counselling that comes from other writers.

Because of this, this program seeks students who are best suited to the strengths and interests of the faculty.

Students may not be the most accomplished writers, but they are accomplished in ways that the faculty can work with.

Still, it’s a competitive program as over 500 people apply each year and they select only six students in each genre.

2. University of Oregon

Stipend Amount Offered: $18,000

Benefits Offered: Tuition, Student fee reduction, Health insurance

The creative writing program at the University of Oregon is a two-year residency with concentrations in poetry or fiction.

Like many writing programs, this program emphasizes the importance of workshopping, integrating concentrated time for craft seminars and individualized reading tutorials.

This is a rigorous program that challenges aspiring writers and is a program taught by faculty that went through similar rigorous apprenticeships.

They fund all incoming students with a teaching appointment, meaning that they are not merely assistants to a class taught by a faculty member, but are the ones solely responsible for the course.

First-year students teach one course per 11-week term for three courses in the year (usually an introduction to fiction, poetry class).

Second-year students usually teach a composition class on a similar schedule for three courses in the year.  10 Graduate students are accepted by the program annually.

3. Purdue University

Stipend Amount Offered: $18,000

Benefits Offered: Tuition, Student free reduction, Merit Raises

Purdue University’s Creative Writing Program is a place where budding artists can work on their craft and seek the mentorship of internationally renowned faculty.

Ultimately, it is a program that is a destination for those that are interested in careers as writers, editors, teachers, non-profit administrators, arts administrators, and more.

 As a three-year program that is fully funded for all of its students, it features a 3.5 to 1 student to faculty ratio–one of the best ratios in the country.

They completed coursework in the first two years, and I dedicated the third year to working on the thesis.

I require students to teach one course per semester, and after the first year of the program, students teach additional courses to receive payments beyond the normal base stipend (base stipend is $13,000 for ten months).

4. Louisiana State University

Stipend Amount Offered: $16,500 (with a B. A) $17,000 (with an M.A.)

Benefits Offered: Tuition

Near the vibrant city of New Orleans, the MFA program at Louisiana State University is a three-year, generously funded program that is home to writers seeking to push their writing abilities.

In a program designed for students to work closely with faculty, I encourage students to find their unique voice as they work to write in traditional, hybrid, and new media genres.

This MFA program encourages students to seek learning outside of just English and literature. It emphasizes critical discussions about arts and culture, politics and history, and a wide variety of topics.

MFA students are awarded a teaching assistantship and are only required for each one class per semester.

One of the true benefits of attending this program is its location. Because many consider New Orleans and Baton Rouge as unique American cultural and artistic hubs, students can take part in many celebrations of art throughout the year.

5. Syracuse University

Stipend Amount Offered: $17,220

Benefits Offered: Tuition

Syracuse University is home to a three year MFA program gives up-and-coming writers an opportunity to learn and hone their craft and practise their art with other artists.

 This program is known for having a close-knit community that is genuinely concerned with helping each other grow in their artistic endeavours

 It is a competitive program to get into, however. Only six poets and six fiction writers are admitted each year.

But these twelve students get to work closely with eight full-time faculty, and at least one renowned visiting writer each year.

Each student is awarded a full-tuition scholarship and a stipend–though some of these scholarships are configured to include teaching classes in the Writing Program.

Ultimately, the belief of Syracuse University is that students should not be laden down with massive student loan payments when they graduate. “Talen, not wealth, is the sole prerequisite for admission.”

6. University of Arizona

Stipend Amount Offered: $16,120 (with master’s degree) $14,808 (no master’s degree)

Benefits Offered: Tuition, Health Insurance

Does not cover: Books, Course Fees

The University of Arizona prides itself on being a future-thinking university, with a focus on the world of tomorrow.

They’re a school that’s fully aware of the role that creative writing and the humanities play in the fabric of society.

 The MFA program in Creative Writing is a fully funded three-year program that offers students the opportunity for research and travel.

Students can focus their studies on three different genres; poetry, fiction and nonfiction, and are encouraged to work across genres.

They offer students a graduate teaching assistantship position, teaching one or two sections of first-year writing (or creative writing) to undergraduates and are eligible to receive additional awards, funding, and research grants.

7. University of Miami

Stipend Amount Offered: $15,965

Benefits Offered: Tuition

The University of Miami’s MFA program is a two-year program with a third-year option. As a program that prides itself in being in a metropolis of polyglot communities.

This program places special emphasis on multilingual craft and gives writers a unique opportunity to hone their abilities in a vibrant multicultural city.

This multicultural, multilingual approach allows students to write from different linguistic modalities, such as regional dialects, slang, and technical jargon.

We encourage students to go beyond superficial language patterns and to really delve into the unique culture and history of different linguistic backgrounds

 The James Michener Fellowships and Teaching Assistantships support all graduate students in the program.

We require MFA students to teach one section of Introduction to Creative Writing per semester during their second year of the program.

During the optional third year, we require students to teach two sections of composition per semester and will receive faculty mentorship towards professional development.

8. Arizona State University

Arizona State University

Stipend Amount Offered: $15,000 (per year)

Benefits Offered: Tuition waiver, health insurance

It well known Arizona State University for its MFA program and has the acclaimed faculty and award-winning alumni to show for it.

Through small classes, intimate workshops, and one on one mentoring, students are encouraged to push their writing abilities in several genres.

When students are admitted to the program and submit a teacher assistantship application, they are awarded a teaching assistantship and stipend.

Each teaching assistantship carries a three-course per year load. Students in Arizona State University’s MFA program must enrol in a minimum of six credit hours each semester.

Students of the program also have additional opportunities to receive creative research fellowships, attend conferences like the Desert Nights, Rising Star Writers Conference, moderate panels at conferences, and more.

READ ALSO!!!

9. University Of Alabama, Tuscaloosa

Stipend Amount Offered: $13,500

Benefits Offered: Tuition, Health Insurance

Does not cover: Books, Course Fees

The creative writing MFA program at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, Alabama is a mix of workshops, forms courses, literature classes that open students’ minds to experimenting with different styles of writing.

Beyond the MFA program, students come to the University of Alabama because they know that  UA is one of the most respected schools in the state.

Founded in 1820, UA is the oldest and largest of the public universities in Alabama. “MFA Degree Program Application”

This program guarantees up to four years of full financial support. Students that are accepted into the program automatically qualify for graduate assistantships, which also includes a stipend of $13,140 paid over nine months.

All incoming students are also automatically considered for additional financial awards, including “Graduate Council Fellowships, McNair Fellowships, and Truman Capote Scholarships.

10. The University of Arkansas

Stipend Amount Offered: $12,000 (per year for students with BA) $12,600 (with MA or equivalent)

Benefits Offered: Tuition waiver

This university overlooking the Ozark mountains has been home to academics for over 140 years.

We require students that are accepted into the University of Arkansas MFA program to teach two courses each semester, though students only teach one course in the fourth year of their program.

As a well-funded program, they award nearly all students of the program teacher assistantships. “MFA Degree Program Application”

Students also compete each year for several Walton Fellowships of $14,000 and several James T. Whitehead and Lily Peter Fellowships of $1,000 or greater.

On top of this, fellowships worth $4,000 per year for up to four years may be awarded for academically qualified candidates. Do well in your classes and earn money.

Translation students that are working in Middle-Eastern languages are also eligible for non-teaching fellowships of $12,000 per year.

11. University of Virginia

Stipend Amount Offered: $20,000

Benefits Offered: Tuition, Enrollment fees, Health insurance

Beyond being a well-recognized, distinguished program, the University of Virginia recognises that students have a lot on their plate in their first year of a new program.

Between adjusting to life as a graduate student, making new friends, staying up to date with coursework, and being creative, the life of a first-year student can be demanding.

The University of Virginia is one of the few programs that gives first-year students no teaching responsibilities so that students can focus on their writing.

During the second year, the fellowship income drops to $10,000 from $20,000, but students earn $10,000 as teaching income for teaching one class per term (usually an introductory level creative writing workshops like Introduction to Poetry Writing or Fiction Writing).

All students are funded so students don’t have to re-compete for funding during their years at UVA.

After the second year, students may apply for one more year of teaching support. “MFA Degree Program Application”

This third year of funding will depend on performance in the MFA program, teaching evaluations, and a successfully defended thesis at the end of the second year.

12. The University of Maryland

Stipend Amount Offered: $19,700

Benefits Offered: Tuition

The MFA program at the University of Maryland is a nationally ranked program with alumni that are the recipients of many awards and fellowships.

 It is part of a rich literary community and shares fiction and poetry readings at nearby schools like Georgetown, Howard, John Hopkins, George Mason, George Washington, American University, the PEN/Faulkner and a variety of local bookstores.

As a program designed to help aspire writers perfect their ability to compose poems, stories, and novels. “MFA Degree Program Application”

This program gives students a chance to study in intensive studios while doing practical work within their chosen genres.

The MFA also requires students to study literature in order to broaden their perspectives. This is a highly competitive program.

Each year Teaching Assistantships admit and fully fund only four fiction writers and four poets. “MFA Degree Program Application”

Typically the funding package is based on two-year completion of the program and pays a stipend of $18,100 in year one and $19,700 in year two.

First-year students teach only one class, while second-year students teach three classes during their second year. “MFA Degree Program Application”

13. Iowa State University

Stipend Amount Offered: $19,200

Benefits Offered: Tuition, Health insurance

The three-year MFA program in Creative Writing and Environment is unique in the academic world because it goes beyond study in creative writing poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and drama.

Instead, it emphasizes the idea that writers can identify and explore their stories in the natural world and environmental imagination.

Indeed, the program is a study of how our environments shape our worldview and shape the way we interpret through stories and images.

This program is a combination of creative writing workshops, literature coursework, environmental fieldwork experience, interdisciplinary studies in courses outside of English, and one-on-one work with mentors.

Ames is an affordable city, so the stipend offered by the program goes a long way to having a comfortable life as a student.”MFA Degree Program Application”

MFA Degree Program Application, Despite the intense competitiveness of artistic fields and the fact that these disciplines are unlikely to make someone rich unless he or she experiences extraordinary success, these fields continue to attract legions of men and women.

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