School of the Art Institute of Chicago

MFA Program

See writers who attended this program
Program Established: 
Chicago, IL
Poetry, Fiction, Creative Nonfiction, Cross-Genre
2 Years
Incoming Class Size: 
Application Deadline: 
January 10, 2024
Application Fee: 
$45 until December 1 ($90 from December 2 to January 10)
Contact E-mail: 
Contact Name: 
Ruth Margraff
Core Faculty Includes: 

Poetry: Elise Paschen, Nathan Hoks, Amy England, Calvin Forbes (Emeritus)

Fiction: Jesse Ball, Sara Levine, James McManus, Beth Nugent

Nonfiction: Sara Levine, James McManus

Cross-Genre: Sally Alatalo, Mark Booth, Janet Desaulniers, Ruth Margraff

Playwriting:  Ruth Margraff

Funding/Employment Opportunities: 

The program offers partial funding through trustee merit scholarships, Dean’s scholarships, and teaching assistantships.

Affiliated Publications/Publishers: 

F Newsmagazine, Collected, Mouth, and indie booklab books

Other Features: 

Modeled on studio art training, SAIC’s two-year MFA in Writing program celebrates writing as art, and offers a fresh alternative to workshop-driven writing programs. One-on-one graduate projects with stellar faculty are the heart of our curriculum, leaving room for longer, wilder, and more ambitious work. Students tap the unique potential of transdisciplinary writing in an art school, connected with a world-class art museum. Our writers cross freely between poetry, fiction, playwriting/screenwriting, nonfiction, comics and text as art. Electives are offered in painting, performance, film, sound, fashion, and photography, among others. Writing students who demonstrate a studio practice can apply for studio space and exhibit in the annual MFA Thesis Exhibition in the School's Sullivan Galleries. Graduating writers can present their work in our reading series and our capstone gala.


Scott Barsotti, Kyle Beachy, Rebecca Beegle, Daniel Borzutzky, Halle Butler, Amina Cain, Kristiana Colón, Patrick Cottrell, Vida Cross, Danielle Dutton, Emil Ferris, Idris Goodwin, Terri Griffith, Allison Gruber, Baird Harper, Tsehaye Hebert, Sara Hess, Lindsay Hunter, Jennifer Karmin, Tim Kinsella, Aja Monet, Ira Murfin, Jose Nateras, Samantha Peale, Cynthia Pelayo, Caroline Picard, Iliana Regan, Deepak Unnikrishnan, Judith Valente, Gwendolyn Whiteside, Colin Winnette