Creative Writing, MFA

Creative Writing MFA. Savin Hill Cove photo by Peter Shmiro

The Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing is a selective three-year program that admits approximately five applicants in fiction and five in poetry each academic year. Every student receives financial support from the university. Many of our students work with Renata, our program administrator, to find positions throughout the university, giving them full support. Additionally, each year one exceptional incoming student will receive a Distinguished MFA Fellowship for Writing and Publishing: this includes full tuition and fee waivers, health insurance coverage, and a $25,000 stipend. The program offers an intense and focused opportunity for students to further their commitment to writing as the center of their professional lives. Through a combination of mentoring by accomplished faculty in a series of creative writing workshops, courses focused on the study of literature offered through the English MA Program, and electives that include the practice of literary editing and the teaching of creative writing, students will have the guidance to develop and shape their work to the full extent of their talent. After three years in the program, they will be prepared to sustain their commitment to contemporary literature as writers, readers, editors, and teachers.

At UMass Boston's MFA Program, we help develop the individual style of each student. Our professors don’t want you to sound like them; they want you to write your best work. Our students take advantage of our relationships with programs like 826Boston, Roxbury Community College’s Writing Center, and Grub Street. They work for literary magazines and presses including Consequence, Hanging Loose, University of Massachusetts Press, Breakwater Review, and Broadsided, and start and run their own literary magazines. They teach undergraduate creative writing classes at UMass Boston and continuing education classes for the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute. Our students and graduates publish widely, and find jobs they love. Most importantly, they're happy they chose UMass Boston.

The MFA degree requires six semesters of full-time study, with 9 credits required in each of the first four semesters, and 6 credits in the final two semesters, during which students will concentrate on completing a thesis in fiction or poetry under the direction of a faculty member. MFA workshops are limited to 12 students, and seminars are limited to 15. Students have the opportunity to work with visiting writers; recently these have included Fanny Howe, Carolyn Forché, Tyehimba Jess, Bob Shacochis, Justin Torres, and Patricia Smith.

The deadline to apply is January 15.**
** Priority deadline is January 15th; if space is available, we’ll consider applications submitted after the 1/15 deadline.

Please contact our program director or program administrator with any questions.

Jill McDonough, MFA Program Director

Renata Tutko, MFA Program Administrator


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