For me, there's no way Iowa is making it on my application list next year. I couldn't believe that I was competing with 746 (?) other people for 25 fiction spots. I got some faulty info and thought they took about 5%. Also, I was a little disillusioned to find out that selected current MFA students help the IWW weed out the mountain of applicants.
amday, just a few thoughts...if you are interested in going to Iowa, then you should reapply--regardless of the acceptance rate. Not everyone gets in the first time--Adam Haslett applied twice, got in the second time and then ended up leaving Iowa with a debut collection that was shortlisted for the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize. I'm just saying, you never know...
also, in defense of the program and the way they review apps--while second years help narrow down the pile--how is this any different than what happens at lit mags, where editorial assistants review submissions and forward the best ones to the editors?
At any rate, I know for a fact that Samantha Chang, director of the program, reads every single application (all 750+) herself. So you need not fear that you are not getting a fair read by someone on the faculty.
The only reason I would NOT apply to an MFA program is if I absolutely would NOT want to attend the school if I were accepted.