Augsburg College :: NewPages Guide to Creative Writing Programs

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Augsburg College

MFA in Creative Writing

Contact Information:

2211 Riverside Ave.

Minneapolis, MN 55454

Program Director: Cass Dalglish

Program Contact: Kathleen Matthews

Phone: (612) 330-1778



Program Information:

Degrees offered: MFA

Type of program: low-residency

Length of program: 2 years, additional time required for concentrations

Genres: fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, screenwriting, playwriting

Enrollment: 20

Total credits required: 44 for MFA; 48 with Concentration in Teaching or Translation; 52 with Concentration in Publishing

Application deadline: ongoing until the program reaches enrollment caps for each genre with new cohorts beginning each July

Scholarships: no

Assistantships: yes (see website)

Core faculty: Nicole Brending, Stephan Clark, Cass Dalglish, Jack El-Hai, Heid E. Erdrich, John Gaterud, Christina Lazaridi, Sarah Myers, Cary Waterman, Steven Wingate

Publishing/editing courses: yes (see website)

Literary Magazine: no

Reading Series:

Recent Visiting Writers: Ed Bok Lee, Christina Lazaridi, Benjamin Percy, Sue William Silverman, Deborah Blum, Kristoffer Diaz, Alex Lemon, Helene Wecker, Bill Wheeler

Program description: Twenty-first century writers compose their work in an environment in which genre has permeable boundaries and lines between genres are often erased. With this in mind, Augsburg’s MFA in Creative Writing leads its students toward expertise in one genre while encouraging cross-genre work. Mentors are award-winning and forward-thinking faculty who work closely with student writers to prepare them for the future of creative writing. Core faculty have received Bush Foundation Fellowships, Minnesota Book Awards, Loft Literary Center Grants, McKnight Artist Fellowships, a Monterey County Film Commission Prize, the Bonderman Playwriting Award, an Oscar Nomination, and the Bakeless Prize.

The Augsburg College MFA is a multi-genre, two-year low-residency program, the only one in the five-state area. It features an annual ten-day summer residency with nationally recognized visiting writers and fall and spring online semesters that include one-on-one mentoring as well as reading-as-writers courses. Our student-to-faculty ratio is 5:1. Although students work in a specific genre, they are also required to complete one out-of-genre semester.

In addition to the basic MFA, students may focus on the Teaching Concentration with the possibility of classroom experience, the Translation Concentration, or the Publishing Concentration. Students in the Publishing Concentration are the editors of small publishing house that selects and publishes one book a year—the winner of a National Book Prize.

At the completion of the MFA students will have a book-length manuscript of publishable quality or substantial original work for screen or stage.