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The Waiting Game...Have you heard yet???
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minna pratt


Apr 11, 2007, 11:16 AM

Post #3176 of 6279 (31323 views)
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Re: [SaraBellum] off u florida waitlist [In reply to] Can't Post

thanks for the congratulations. i got in for fiction. and they contacted me by phone and then email (i missed the call). good luck!


SweetJane


e-mail user

Apr 11, 2007, 1:11 PM

Post #3177 of 6279 (31255 views)
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Re: [EastCoastPoet] Spots Now Available [In reply to] Can't Post

You don't have to live with undergraduate students--you can just look for someone on craigslist seeking a graduate student or professional roommate to increase your chances of finding someone quiet and low-key.

But I could just be saying that because I'm the type of person who prefers not to live alone. After having a single dorm room in college for a year, I quickly realized that the benefit of being able to tell someone about your day when you come home or share a meal easily outweighed the drawbacks of sometimes dealing with the mess or the noise of other people. YMMV, of course.



In Reply To
I have talked to a number of current MFA students (two most notably are from BGSU) and the suggestion is you should live alone for at least the first year. Why? Because of space of course...unless you're the kind of guy who can write while Van Halen is being played in the background while GTA 3 is going non stop, good luck with the whole roommate thing. With 17 grand from Iowa you could live more than comfortably in your own place and never have to worry about eating three meals a day or how often you can crank the AC. My advice, not that I'm any good at it or anything, is to live alone. Forget trying to live as cheaply as possible, try living comfortably.



SJ

"Oh, all the poets they studied rules of verse
and those ladies, they rolled their eyes"


SweetJane


e-mail user

Apr 11, 2007, 1:14 PM

Post #3178 of 6279 (31253 views)
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Re: [minna pratt] off u florida waitlist [In reply to] Can't Post

Congrats, Minna!

Since I've chosen Florida myself (for poetry), I have to say that I'm hoping you'll choose them! If you want the contact information for any of the students I've been in touch with for help with questions about the community there or about Gainesville in general, feel free to send me a PM.



In Reply To
thanks for the congratulations. i got in for fiction. and they contacted me by phone and then email (i missed the call). good luck!



SJ

"Oh, all the poets they studied rules of verse
and those ladies, they rolled their eyes"


v1ctorya


Apr 11, 2007, 1:29 PM

Post #3179 of 6279 (31241 views)
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Re: The Waiting is killah [In reply to] Can't Post

This is killing me. Waiting is a double-edged sword. I was told I'm now #1 on a waitlist, but while it means, "yeah! they loved my writing to some degree and I'm in the top 5% or whatever" it also means I wasn't the best and that I have to pray for someone to choose another school (or get seriously injured) to get in.

When is the decision date again for everyone else? April 15 or 21st? When will my agony end?

I'm also envious of all of you, but wish you all the best and look forward to hearing about your progress in other forums, or asking your opinion in this one next year while I try again.


Moonshade


Apr 11, 2007, 2:01 PM

Post #3180 of 6279 (31213 views)
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Re: [minna pratt] off u florida waitlist [In reply to] Can't Post

Gainesville is a college town. Rent is relatively cheap, I believe you can get a one bedroom apt. for $500 or so. Since it's in Florida, it's mostly warm all year round, but blazing hot in the summer.

I believe there's someone on these boards who graduated from U of F just a few years ago. I think her name's Stepahanie. She can give you info on the program itself, she was posting alot back in 2003.

Congratulations!


papichulo


Apr 11, 2007, 2:38 PM

Post #3181 of 6279 (31182 views)
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Greensboro and Irvine update [In reply to] Can't Post

Bit the bullet and called Greensboro and Irvine: since many of us were still waiting to hear, I thought you might like an update.

Irvine has a recorded message from their program assistant that apologizes for the long wait in notifications, and then says that all acceptees and waitlist candidates have been called...so no phone call = rejected.

Greensboro's program assistant says that 1st round acceptees have already been notified at this point, and that the committee still has a stack of files for waitlist folks that they plan on notifying after April 15th. BUT he says that there isn't enough money to go around this year, and that not all the acceptees will receive funding this time (as Thera mentioned earlier, with the waivers and all that). His personal advice was that if you have a pending $$$ offer from another school that you need to respond to by the 15th, to take it and not risk losing out on funding elsewhere.

That completes my waiting limbo. Here's my final tally:
2 acceptances (1 with funding)
2 waitlists
1 holding pen (seriously; not the term they used, but apparently I'm on the backup list behind the waitlist)
2 many rejections to count

But I am excited to go to Maryland, now that I'm no longer in limbo and have the power to make an informed decision! Good luck to those waiting; congrats to those who have made decisions.


mingram
Mike Ingram

Apr 11, 2007, 3:14 PM

Post #3182 of 6279 (31151 views)
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Re: [papichulo] Greensboro and Irvine update [In reply to] Can't Post

I'd vote for living alone, though I realize it's ultimately a personal choice. On $17K a year, you could definitely do so in Iowa City.

I had roommates before I went to grad school, but because we all worked full-time, we were mostly out of each others' hair. The thing with grad school -- and especially if you're not teaching, but even if you are -- you'll be home A LOT. I mean, you've got workshop one night a week, maybe a couple seminars that meet once a week. Perhaps you like yoga, or basketball, or hiking, or whatever, but still ... home. A lot. Unless you're really making an effort to get out of the house, and maybe you're someone who likes to write in the library, or the coffee shop, or whatever.

Anyway, just something to think about. I knew people who had roommates and were perfectly happy, but the majority lived by themselves.


girlinblack

e-mail user

Apr 11, 2007, 5:15 PM

Post #3183 of 6279 (31091 views)
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Re: [a2poet] VT [In reply to] Can't Post

I can't believe I'm about to write this next sentence.

In at Virginia Tech for poetry, via phone this afternoon.

To say I am beside myself is a gross understatement.


a2poet


Apr 11, 2007, 5:55 PM

Post #3184 of 6279 (31061 views)
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Re: [girlinblack] VT [In reply to] Can't Post

Congrats ma'am!! The instructors there all seem like genuine folks, which is always good. I actually declined my acceptance yesterday for a better offer (if you can believe that) at Indiana but I think the program is going to get more and more recognition as time goes by.


http://mwicker.blogspot.com/


adg4s


Apr 11, 2007, 11:18 PM

Post #3185 of 6279 (30949 views)
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Re: [mingram] Greensboro and Irvine update [In reply to] Can't Post

thanks for the input on the roommates vs. living along thing. basically, i'll be in a long distance relationship in which i'll be traveling from my mfa program back to south florida as much as possible. the main reason i wanted to live cheaply is b/c i don't intend on being in my apartment that often.

i haven't made a final decision between irvine and iowa... it's too late in the game to visit irvine and i got so a great impression of iowa after visiting... i think it's hard to commit to a place i haven't visited but oh well... any thoughts about committing to a program you've never visited?


papichulo


Apr 11, 2007, 11:54 PM

Post #3186 of 6279 (30936 views)
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Re: [adg4s] not being able to visit the program [In reply to] Can't Post

Hey there,

I live overseas and haven't been able to visit any programs. To get a better sense of them, I asked the program assistants for names of current students and a professor who I could email with questions. Ask what they like most and least about the program, faculty, etc. People have been really nice and very frank in answering my questions about programs. Then I troll through Craiglist and the university's site for off-campus housing links to get a sense of rent and cool neighborhoods to live in, lifestyle, etc.

Also in my earlier research for programs, I remember that there was a guy from Irvine who maintained a blog about his experiences in the MFA program. I think I connected to it via one of those general sites about applying to MFAs (maybe Kealey's site, but probably not). Maybe you can find it on Google. Anyway, that guy was happy overall with the program and his lifestyle there, but not so thrilled about 1-2 things. The one that I remember is that some of the students wanted the faculty to pay more attention to craft issues, which were not being addressed in the coursework.


In Reply To

it's too late in the game to visit irvine and i got so a great impression of iowa after visiting... i think it's hard to commit to a place i haven't visited but oh well... any thoughts about committing to a program you've never visited?



redragtop


Apr 12, 2007, 12:03 AM

Post #3187 of 6279 (30931 views)
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Re: [adg4s] Greensboro and Irvine update [In reply to] Can't Post

You must really like the program at Irvine if you're still considering it. Iowa obviously has the most prestige but Irvine has less students in the program and it probably has the best recent publication record of any program. You can't lose either way. Why do you like Irvine so much?


soozybleu


Apr 12, 2007, 10:19 AM

Post #3188 of 6279 (30849 views)
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Re: [adg4s] Greensboro and Irvine update [In reply to] Can't Post

My buddy's headed to Irvine for fiction. One thing I've heard is that they guarantee on-campus housing for writing program students. It's fairly reasonable and nice looking. So if you decided on Irvine, you might not have to live with a roommate. (Although the housing application deadline is soon, I think. May 1st?)

And if you haven't talked at length with anyone at Irvine, you should. I know that my friend was given some current student's phone numbers (you can prob. call the main office and just ask). They were helpful - gave him a feel for the program, workshop environment, etc.. Made the decision-making process much easier since he couldn't visit either.

Congrats on two great acceptances, BTW!


minna pratt


Apr 12, 2007, 10:24 AM

Post #3189 of 6279 (30847 views)
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Re: [redragtop] Greensboro and Irvine update [In reply to] Can't Post

If I were so lucky as to be in your shoes, I'd choose Irvine. I've just heard much better things about the school, generally speaking. The only thing Iowa might win out on is its reputation (but frankly, Irvine has gained quite a reputation itself) and better funding possibly (depending on what Iowa has offered you...but still Irvine doesn't have tiered funding which makes for a better environment if you ask me.) If your visit to Iowa didn't impress you... I don't know. Like another poster said, get in touch with current students and try to get a better sense of the place and program. But my vote is for Irvine.


seemingmeaning

e-mail user

Apr 12, 2007, 4:31 PM

Post #3190 of 6279 (30733 views)
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Re: [redragtop] Spots Now Available [In reply to] Can't Post

Yeah, which school offered the best funding? If it were me, Iowa would be my first choice because of its esteemed reputation. Check out the recent Iowa MFA blog for more information regarding your ilk.

--guy anglade


mingram
Mike Ingram

Apr 12, 2007, 4:33 PM

Post #3191 of 6279 (30731 views)
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Re: [minna pratt] Greensboro and Irvine update [In reply to] Can't Post

I think Irvine's reputation is just as good as Iowa's, particularly within the writing world (i.e., random people I meet sometimes know that Iowa has a graduate writing program, and maybe that's not the case for Irvine, but the people who actually make decisions in hiring and publishing know Irvine is a top program). One thing to consider might be program size: personally, I liked the larger size of Iowa, because it made for a larger writing community, and more people to hang out with. But there are some definite upsides to a smaller program, too. So, in the end, I think it will just come down to feel -- which place seems like the best fit. Because I think it's hard to go wrong with either.


adg4s


Apr 12, 2007, 5:44 PM

Post #3192 of 6279 (30690 views)
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Re: [mingram] Greensboro and Irvine update [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks all the advice, everyone. In the next 24 hours I'll have to decide between the two. Iowa is offering a first year non-teaching fellowship--more money than Irvine ($2k more) and cheaper cost of living in Iowa City. Irvine, from what I gather my old writing profs at UVA, has all the current buzz. It is also smaller and located in a warm weather area. My writing profs tell me to take Irvine hands down, however plenty of people on this board doubt that Irvine has as great a reputation... Jesus my head is going to explode. I can't decide.


hamholio


Apr 12, 2007, 6:18 PM

Post #3193 of 6279 (30666 views)
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Re: [adg4s] Greensboro and Irvine update [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm in Iowa City and I applied to both -- had I been talented enough to be in your position, I would choose Irvine. BUT I was looking for a school outside of the region, so any of the top 5 schools would have beat Iowa in that regard.

One thing to consider -- I've got a friend that recently graduated from the Workshop in poetry and ever since he's been buzzing around the world adjuncting . He told me that a lot of the job listings he's seen for these jobs require two-years teaching experience. I don't know if that interests you -- and considering the number of schools you got accepted by, you might not need or want any work like that if you're publishing right out the door.


BlueVelveeta


Apr 12, 2007, 8:07 PM

Post #3194 of 6279 (30605 views)
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Re: [adg4s] Greensboro and Irvine update [In reply to] Can't Post

For what it's worth, despite the fact that Iowa seems to be the knee-jerk MFA program, there are plenty of people on this board and all over the writing world (myself included) that believe Iowa is selling reputation over quality. I say this not to start a debate on the subject, but just to illustrate that you can't worry too much about whether or not people on this board, or anywhere else, claim to "doubt" a school's reputation. If you've sought input, advice, and feedback, and arrived at the conclusion that a particular program is "good," you probably know better than all the nay-sayers combined.

Based on what I've heard from fellow writers, former teachers, folks I met at AWP a few years ago, and friends with MFAs, Irvine is widely regarded as the best and most promising MFA program in the country, period.

Good luck!


In Reply To
Thanks all the advice, everyone. In the next 24 hours I'll have to decide between the two. Iowa is offering a first year non-teaching fellowship--more money than Irvine ($2k more) and cheaper cost of living in Iowa City. Irvine, from what I gather my old writing profs at UVA, has all the current buzz. It is also smaller and located in a warm weather area. My writing profs tell me to take Irvine hands down, however plenty of people on this board doubt that Irvine has as great a reputation... Jesus my head is going to explode. I can't decide.



toadvine


Apr 12, 2007, 10:34 PM

Post #3195 of 6279 (31986 views)
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Re: [BlueVelveeta] Greensboro and Irvine update [In reply to] Can't Post

I also don't want to instigate anything, and don't claim to be an expert by any stretch. But I spent a few years at a West Coast writing program, went to a few conferences, talked to a lot of faculty at other places, etc. And this board is the only place where I've ever seen anybody refer to Irvine as the top program in the country. Everybody I've met seems to debate between Iowa, Columbia, and Hopkins. Most of the time I've heard Irvine referred to as the experimental place, or the program where Michael Chabon went.

Iowa's reputation, on the other hand, is stellar just about everywhere except for this board and in the nascent MFA-related blogosphere. If it wasn't, they couldn't even be accused of selling reputation.

If your writing tends toward the experimental, by all means choose Irvine. If reputation is your primary concern, choose Iowa. And of course, both are great programs, so you can never go wrong by following the funding.

And just to clarify, I have no horse in this race. Iowa rejected me, and I didn't apply to Irvine.


In Reply To
For what it's worth, despite the fact that Iowa seems to be the knee-jerk MFA program, there are plenty of people on this board and all over the writing world (myself included) that believe Iowa is selling reputation over quality. I say this not to start a debate on the subject, but just to illustrate that you can't worry too much about whether or not people on this board, or anywhere else, claim to "doubt" a school's reputation. If you've sought input, advice, and feedback, and arrived at the conclusion that a particular program is "good," you probably know better than all the nay-sayers combined.

Based on what I've heard from fellow writers, former teachers, folks I met at AWP a few years ago, and friends with MFAs, Irvine is widely regarded as the best and most promising MFA program in the country, period.

Good luck!


In Reply To
Thanks all the advice, everyone. In the next 24 hours I'll have to decide between the two. Iowa is offering a first year non-teaching fellowship--more money than Irvine ($2k more) and cheaper cost of living in Iowa City. Irvine, from what I gather my old writing profs at UVA, has all the current buzz. It is also smaller and located in a warm weather area. My writing profs tell me to take Irvine hands down, however plenty of people on this board doubt that Irvine has as great a reputation... Jesus my head is going to explode. I can't decide.




JKicker
Jonathan

Apr 12, 2007, 11:15 PM

Post #3196 of 6279 (32008 views)
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Re: [toadvine] Greensboro and Irvine update [In reply to] Can't Post

Accepted at McNeese State for fiction. Tuition waived, $9,000 TA Stipend. Three year program which usually results in both the MFA and MA degrees if students take the right classes. Neil Connelly seems like a really genuine guy and I really dig his stuff. I've never been to Lake Charles before...I'm sure its not the prettiest area post Rita and oil spills...but I'm fairly certain I'm going...its hard to say no to an opportunity to write without the financial stress cloud hovering overhead.

Any thoughts or advice before I move 1100 miles away?

As always, good luck to those still holding out!


redragtop


Apr 12, 2007, 11:58 PM

Post #3197 of 6279 (31986 views)
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Re: [adg4s] Greensboro and Irvine update [In reply to] Can't Post

Listen to your professors. They know more than anyone on this board. Irvine does have a lot of buzz these days, especially with the new book by Joshua Ferris doing so well.


jamfa


Apr 13, 2007, 8:17 AM

Post #3198 of 6279 (31937 views)
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Re: [franz] The Waiting Game...Have you heard yet??? [In reply to] Can't Post

Hey… I’m new here… been lurking for a while, and my friend suggested I join.

I applied to:

Iowa
Michigan
Texas
Colorado State
Eastern Washington


(in poetry)

I got into the last two, but I’m thinking I’ll be going to CSU in the fall.


ecphraticknolls


Apr 13, 2007, 8:27 AM

Post #3199 of 6279 (31930 views)
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Re: [jamfa] The Waiting Game...Have you heard yet??? [In reply to] Can't Post

Cool. I think I’m going to Colorado State in poetry as well. Send me a PM or whatever…. If you want. I’m really looking forward to the fall. The program looks sweet, and the town/location are awesome. Check out “the book” on the website… it has me rather excited about the program… (well, that and the positive impressions past students generally seem to have about the place… )


mlpurdy
Moriah Purdy

Apr 13, 2007, 9:23 AM

Post #3200 of 6279 (31902 views)
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Funding dilemma [In reply to] Can't Post

I know there's been a fair amount of banter about paying for your MFA, and I never thought I'd be the one to ask this question (so maybe that means I've already answered it)... but I'm still fighting for funding at the programs I've been accepted to. It seems they really like me, but they don't like me enough to fund me. My current top choice, George Mason, is trying everything it its power to get me support for the first year, along with the usual TA training, so that I can slide into teaching in the second year (guaranteed). That said, so far the most likely position is a $10,000 stipend but no tuition waiver.

I really can't imagine doing this whole thing again next year, but I also don't want to go into anymore debt just to start my MFA. I really like the program at GMU, but I have a threshold of money I'm willing to take out in additional loans, and so far what they've offered me (as a likely possibility, not even guaranteed positions) does not meet that threshold.

So do I accept, see what happens between now and a month or so, to see if they can get me up to that point, or do I suck it up and do this whole thing next year, to take the chance that I might get into programs that want to fund me fully right off the bat?

I have a good job, I really like Boston, but I've been putting my life on hold getting ready for this opportunity.

I'd appreciate if anyone has an opinion on this... or if anyone decided their first round of offers weren't good enough and applied again the next year.

~M

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