»

Subscribe | Give a Gift Subscription

Log In or Register | Help | Contact Us | Donate

Advanced Search

Main Index » Writing and Publishing » MFA Programs
Choosing an MFA Program (2009) (2010) (2011)
Edit your profilePrivate messages Search postsWho's online?
You are not signed in. Click here to sign in.
If you are not a member, Register here!
135742 registered users
First page Previous page 1 ... 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 ... 41 Next page Last page  View All


kbritten

e-mail user

Dec 22, 2009, 1:26 PM

Post #776 of 1018 (11170 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [WanderingTree] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

Yeah, I second that. If I am lucky enough to be able to choose between a funded school and Notre Dame with only tuition remission, I would seriously consider taking a gamble on Notre Dame. Maybe I'm just naive, but I think I can scrap together $15,000 a year plus health benefits, the same amount as most stipends. No teaching experience, but meh. In fantasy land, if I found myself having to choose between Notre Dame without fellowship/TA/etc and Cornell with funding, I'd probably choose Cornell. Although I think I'd be happier at Notre Dame. Hmmmm, fantasy land.

I will also say that a master's degree in anything from a school like Notre Dame or Cornell would go a lot further than a school like Florida, as much as I would jump at the chance to receive a degree from UF. That's just something else to consider. My undergraduate degree was in philosophy, I need something, anything, to give me a leg up in the employment world!

While I'm posting, I would love to know anyone's experience from last year or years prior. Anyone applying again? What was your list last year? Wanderingtree was kind enough to describe his experience last year, I would love to hear from others as well.


pongo
Buy this book!

e-mail user

Dec 22, 2009, 1:38 PM

Post #777 of 1018 (11164 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [kbritten] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

Where your degree is from means remarkably little when you're applying for a job, unless the people doing the hiring haven't heard of your school and don't know whether it's accredited.


The Review Mirror, available at www.unsolicitedpress.com

Difficult Listening, Sundays from ten to noon (Central time), at http://www.radiofreenashville.org/.

http://home.comcast.net/~david.m.harris/site/


kbritten

e-mail user

Dec 22, 2009, 1:50 PM

Post #778 of 1018 (11157 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [pongo] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

Yeah, I've been told both from a variety of people, so I'm assuming it means something different to each employer. I know for a fact that it will only help though, even if it doesn't guarantee a job. In other words, far more employers will be "impressed" by a reputable school than will be put off by it.


WanderingTree


Dec 22, 2009, 2:21 PM

Post #779 of 1018 (11145 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [pongo] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

Pongo, it really depends on the job you are applying for and who is doing the hiring. Make no mistake, names/perceptions do matter to a lot of people. All things equal, if I had to hire someone with a degree from Harvard vs. a degree from an obscure British university, I'd go with the Harvard guy/gal. All things equal, if someone who went to a large state school (and had little to no knowledge of private liberal arts institutions) had to hire someone from an obscure British university vs. a "New Ivy" liberal arts school, they would probably pick the obscure British university.

I've been hired for jobs on a couple occasions where I'm sure my alma mater had a lot of power in swaying final decisions. I've also been passed for projects and jobs because people weren't familiar with my alma mater (and yes, I do know this for a fact).


pongo
Buy this book!

e-mail user

Dec 22, 2009, 2:59 PM

Post #780 of 1018 (11117 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [WanderingTree] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

Yes, "all things being equal," the prestige school has an edge. But all things are never equal, and the person doing the hiring -- and I've been that person -- needs the right person for the job, not the right alma mater. I'm sure there are idiots out there who hire by the alma mater, but you are much better off going to the right school for you rather than the most prestigious school you can get into.


The Review Mirror, available at www.unsolicitedpress.com

Difficult Listening, Sundays from ten to noon (Central time), at http://www.radiofreenashville.org/.

http://home.comcast.net/~david.m.harris/site/


kbritten

e-mail user

Dec 22, 2009, 3:23 PM

Post #781 of 1018 (11112 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [pongo] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

Oh, I totally agree with you on that. I actually think that's why I like Notre Dame, because it's right for me. I like the faculty, the location, the town, the town's proximity to things (to big cities like Chicago, as well as to my brother in Michigan). I like that it's a Catholic university, even though I'm not exactly the best example of Catholic-ness *ahem* and I'm theologically liberal *double ahem*, it is kind of the school for Irish Catholics. I mean, they are the Fighting Irish! lol But, that being said, when I think about an edge that Notre Dame has over a school like Florida, it's the name. I can't imagine that hurting me. In fact, I can only imagine that helping me. I would just like any leg up that I can get, if that makes sense, and I think graduating from a school like Notre Dame might come in handy in the future. I get what you're saying though, so I hope I don't sound argumentative.


Zuleika Dobson


e-mail user

Dec 22, 2009, 7:04 PM

Post #782 of 1018 (11056 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [WanderingTree] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

Don't you hate when they respond...

"Is that a two-year school?"
"Oh. Where is that, exactly?"
"That's Ivy League, isn't it?"
"I'm from the East Coast/West Coast/Germany/Kazakhstan, so I'm not too familiar..."


"Every spectator is a coward or a traitor."


Zuleika Dobson


e-mail user

Dec 22, 2009, 7:12 PM

Post #783 of 1018 (11053 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [kbritten] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

Ha. Definitely agree. I need something to counteract the obscurity of my own undergraduate degree.

When I tell my (non-writing) friends/family that I'm applying to Iowa, Brooklyn, &c., they mostly respond with eyebrow raises. And then I mention Columbia and they say, "Oh, that'd be great if you got in there." Humph.

If I get in somewhere and end up going, I know that the name of the school will unfortunately matter significantly for future non-literary jobs. But obviously, I'd be thrilled to get in and go to any of the schools I apply to.


"Every spectator is a coward or a traitor."


kbritten

e-mail user

Dec 22, 2009, 8:02 PM

Post #784 of 1018 (11038 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [Zuleika Dobson] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

My parents did the same thing! Notre Dame, Cornell, Florida, Florida State, Vanderbilt, ah yessss, good schools. But, Iowa?

I have to preface my list with "I know that I would ordinarily have no chance of getting into Cornell or Vanderbilt, but the process is really subjective for creative writing, so it's not totally out of the question." (I say that knowing that I still have almost zero percent chances of getting into a school like Cornell. Well, 1.5% to be exact).

I also have to say "Iowa is one of the best, if not the best, programs in the country. Raymond Carver went there but did not graduate." When I said that to my father, he nodded approvingly.

I think it's funny how easy people think it is to get accepted anywhere. I would be happy to get into two programs from my list. I would be honored to be waitlisted at a couple of those places! Shoot, if I got rejected everywhere except one program and got funding there, this would be a success! It's just such a weird, strange process.


WanderingTree


Dec 22, 2009, 8:09 PM

Post #785 of 1018 (11033 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [Zuleika Dobson] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  


In Reply To
Don't you hate when they respond...

"Is that a two-year school?"
"Oh. Where is that, exactly?"
"That's Ivy League, isn't it?"
"I'm from the East Coast/West Coast/Germany/Kazakhstan, so I'm not too familiar..."


This is an exaggerated version of the conversation:

"Cornell is a great school! Nice!"
"I said Grinnell."
"Oh, where is that?"
"It's in central Iowa."
"Ah, I see. Is that like a technical college or something?"
"Um, no. It's actually one of the best colleges in the country"
"Riiight. Iowa right? That's terrific. I love corn."
"Look at this wikipedia entry on my phone."
"Okay, okay, I believe you. Jesus, insecure much?"
"Where did you go to school?"
"Got my B.A at Mainstream college and my M.A. at Household name University. I heart The Gap. Just wanted to throw that out there."


And when I was talking to a co-worker (he went to Berkley) about which writing programs were the best in the country, he couldn't believe that Iowa was one of the top schools. "Really? Iowa? Are you sure?"

I think there needs to be a perception war. The Midwest needs to bring the smack down on the coasts.

(This post was edited by WanderingTree on Dec 22, 2009, 8:19 PM)


Zuleika Dobson


e-mail user

Dec 22, 2009, 8:19 PM

Post #786 of 1018 (11026 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [kbritten] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

Strangely, my dad is the only one who has any idea about MFAs. He knew all about IWW before I even did, and when I mentioned Columbia's $100+ app fee and lack of funding, he simply said, "Just don't apply then." Very wise, old man, very wise.

I applied to a few of these schools for undergrad, getting in to some and not getting in to some. But many of my friends seem to think that undergrad acceptance/rejection is indicative of future MFA results.

"I promise, you will 100% get into NYU. It's waaaay over-rated," one bitter NYU sociology major said.
"But ____ is in the South and they love people from the North, and didn't (random dude from high school) go there? He's like borderline retarded."
"Oh, if you got into ____ undergrad they'll OBVIOUSLY let you in for some graduate writing program."

At times, I want to engage in fisticuffs.


"Every spectator is a coward or a traitor."


Zuleika Dobson


e-mail user

Dec 22, 2009, 8:27 PM

Post #787 of 1018 (11017 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [WanderingTree] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

Hahahah. Oh god, I always have people thinking Cornell for me too. I sincerely feel bad for anyone who went to Williams. Possibly the most difficult college admission-wise, yet hands down one of the most obscure.

At times, I wonder why I didn't just go to USC. Although I'd probably still have people asking if I was from South Carolina.

This is 100% never going to happen, but if Venus crosses Mars and a cow jumps over the moon and I end up getting into Iowa and Columbia and somehow have equal funding, I will probably be presented with the most difficult decision of my life.


"Every spectator is a coward or a traitor."


kbritten

e-mail user

Dec 22, 2009, 8:44 PM

Post #788 of 1018 (11012 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [Zuleika Dobson] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

I'm from California, but finished my undergrad at Auburn University in Alabama. When I tell my fellow Californians, they either say "there's a college in Auburn, CA?" or they ask me if I'm racist. No, no, I am not a racist...

I went to St. Mary's College of California before transferring to Auburn, and found out upon moving that there are like fifty St. Mary's Colleges in the United States, and to make things worse, I have been asked if I went to every single one. Darn Catholics and their saints!


pongo
Buy this book!

e-mail user

Dec 22, 2009, 8:59 PM

Post #789 of 1018 (11006 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [Zuleika Dobson] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  


In Reply To
Strangely, my dad is the only one who . . . knew all about IWW before I even did,


Your dad's a Wobbly?

Sorry. Probably just a cultural reference gap.


The Review Mirror, available at www.unsolicitedpress.com

Difficult Listening, Sundays from ten to noon (Central time), at http://www.radiofreenashville.org/.

http://home.comcast.net/~david.m.harris/site/


jamie_mu


Dec 22, 2009, 9:48 PM

Post #790 of 1018 (10990 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [kbritten] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

kbritten: you said this lovely bunch of sentences:

"I'm from California, but finished my undergrad at Auburn University in Alabama. When I tell my fellow Californians, they either say "there's a college in Auburn, CA?" or they ask me if I'm racist. No, no, I am not a racist... "

I think Sierra College is pretty close to Auburn. UC Auburn does have a nice ring to it. I'm from Stockton originally and lived in Sacramento before moving to the east coast. Your story was refreshing, to say the least.


kbritten

e-mail user

Dec 22, 2009, 9:58 PM

Post #791 of 1018 (10985 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [jamie_mu] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

Glad to be of service :)

It's funny, Californians think I'm a racist for going to school in the South, and Southerners think I'm a hippie. Or, as one camoflauged, stubble-faced, slow-talking young man put it, a "democrat."


kbritten

e-mail user

Dec 22, 2009, 10:19 PM

Post #792 of 1018 (10973 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [jamie_mu] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

I know of Sierra College by the way, I passed it on 1-80 (?) going to Tahoe, munching on chocolate covered gummie bears from Ikeda's. Or did Sierra College come first? I can't remember. Those were the days... it's good to see so many ex-California people here representing!


Zuleika Dobson


e-mail user

Dec 22, 2009, 10:39 PM

Post #793 of 1018 (10967 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [pongo] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

Had to look this up. Socialists, eh? And anarchists too?


"Every spectator is a coward or a traitor."


pongo
Buy this book!

e-mail user

Dec 22, 2009, 10:40 PM

Post #794 of 1018 (10965 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [Zuleika Dobson] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

Probably an age gap. "I dreamed I saw Joe Hill last night," and not the novelist.


The Review Mirror, available at www.unsolicitedpress.com

Difficult Listening, Sundays from ten to noon (Central time), at http://www.radiofreenashville.org/.

http://home.comcast.net/~david.m.harris/site/


WanderingTree


Dec 22, 2009, 10:51 PM

Post #795 of 1018 (10952 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [Zuleika Dobson] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

they also look like fat storm troopers at protests ; - )


taraberyl



Dec 23, 2009, 12:25 AM

Post #796 of 1018 (10927 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [WanderingTree] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

if my magic potions kick in by late feb/early march and i do end up going to iowa, i know all my friends will think i am going to my safety school. ha.

my boyfriend asked me recently if i got in anywhere/everywhere - regardless of where i live now, regardless of where i actually applied - with all funding being equal, where would i go?
do you guys have answers to that question? i told him it was too many 'if's and i couldn't begin to answer it. except of course now i am wondering.


Zuleika Dobson


e-mail user

Dec 23, 2009, 3:06 AM

Post #797 of 1018 (10883 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [taraberyl] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

Yeah, that's like my overly optimistic friend who asked what I'd do when I got into all of my programs. I curse him for that sort of thinking.

And I guess the fact that this will never happen is sort of a positive thing because I'd never be able to decide. I'd say the majority are all so damn good (and impossible) in their own way. I decided not to apply to any real 'safetys' because I plan on re-applying next year if I fail 12 times.

It'd probably come down to location, reputation, pleasantness of website/communication materials, and eagerness of the faculty to work with me. Even if I got wait-listed somewhere and eventually got in, I'm not sure I'd want to go if I were accepted straight out at another institution (all things being equal).

By the way, after all my apps are in, I'm going to make a list of every action, symbol, or item associated with 'good luck' throughout history and across all cultures. I'll move the furniture in my room around to make it feng shui-aligned. And then I'll find a four leaf clover and wear amulets and stop eating eggs and knock on wood and look for an albatross and hang a horse shoe over my door.


"Every spectator is a coward or a traitor."

(This post was edited by Zuleika Dobson on Dec 23, 2009, 3:12 AM)


ericweinstein
Eric Weinstein


Dec 24, 2009, 2:01 AM

Post #798 of 1018 (10764 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [kbritten] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

My father's pretty well-versed in the strange world of MFA rankings (to the extent they exist, anyway), so he didn't give me a weird look when I told him I'd be applying to Iowa. Friends, though, are a different story.


Hans Landa: You'll be shot for this!
Aldo Raine: Nah, I don't think so. More like chewed out. I've been chewed out before.


__________



Dec 24, 2009, 6:03 PM

Post #799 of 1018 (10692 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [ericweinstein] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  

Show your friends Noah Baumbach's Mr. Jealousy. Eric Stotlz might help legitmize your decision.


six five four three two one 0 ->


mrlomez


Dec 31, 2009, 4:52 PM

Post #800 of 1018 (10452 views)
Shortcut
     Re: [jamie_mu] Choosing an MFA Program (2009) & (2010) - International Applicants [In reply to]  


In Reply To
RE: UC Irvine's funding international students: it just takes a google search:

1: So, if you are an international student who is accepted into the program at UCI they will pay you, but not nearly enough to cover the out of state tuition, which is only going to get pricier since the UC system is having budget problems and tuition is going 30% in the next six months.

2: One other thing about the structure of the program at UCI: You teach fall and winter quarters and are technically on fellowship for spring, giving you more time to write. Also, as of last March, they were offering a one year teaching position once you graduated. This is awesome, essentially funding you for an additional year with limited teaching responsibilities and time and money to finish your ms.



Part 1: Last year a girl was accepted from France (albeit, she was an American citizen living abroad). If you're an American living abroad or out-of-state, UCI will encourage you to arrive early, set up a bank account, etc. and establish residency by your second year (the first year is on the house), at which point the stipend is sufficient enough that you won't have to take out any loans.

Part 2: True story.

First page Previous page 1 ... 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 ... 41 Next page Last page  View All

Main Index » Writing and Publishing » MFA Programs

 


P&W Newsletters

Sign up to receive our monthly email newsletter to stay informed of the latest news, events and more.

Click to Sign Up

Subscribe to P&W Magazine | Donate Now | Advertise | Sign up for E-Newsletter | About Us | Contact Us

© Copyright Poets & Writers 2011. All Rights Reserved