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Poets & Writers Names USM Stonecoast MFA Among Top 10 in Nation

Maine's rocky shoreline

The University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing Program once again has been listed among the nation’s top 10 low-residency programs for creative writing by Poets & Writers magazine. The publication represents the nation’s largest nonprofit organization serving creative writers.

The ranking, released in the September issue, was based on surveys of creative writing students nationwide. Low-residency, creative writing programs were compared in five categories: popularity; selectivity; fellowship placement; job placement; and genres available for study.

When compared with other programs, Stonecoast was tied for fourth in the 2013 popularity survey and eighth in a six-year popularity study. Stonecoast also was listed as fourth in job placement.

“We are very proud of our program and being placed as one of the nation's top five low-residency programs,” said Robin Talbot, Stonecoast MFA Program associate director. “This honor demonstrates the incredible literary and professional accomplishments of our students, alums and faculty members.”

“Having taught at Stonecoast MFA since day one, I felt proud to open my ‘Poets & Writers’ MFA program issue and see our highest-ever rankings,” Elizabeth Searle, Stonecoast faculty member, said. “In the past several years, Stonecoast has really come together in every way. Our students are publishing more widely than ever and are supporting each other as we have always done at Stonecoast.

“It's great to see that acknowledged from the outside and even better to experience from the inside what a lively and dynamic literary community we have built at Stonecoast,” Searle said.

The Stonecoast MFA in Creative Writing offers a comprehensive yet thoroughly individualized, two-year graduate education in the art of writing. The program is within the USM College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences.

Each Stonecoast semester begins with a 10-day residency. During the semester, the award-winning faculty members guide Stonecoast students in intensive one-on-one tutorials in creative nonfiction, fiction, poetry and popular fiction, with elective work in scriptwriting, translation and cross-genre writing.

The full “Poets & Writers” ranking index is available in print only in the September edition. For more information about the rankings and how they were determined, see Poets & Writers "2014 MFA Index: Further Reading." 

Visit USM Stonecoast MFA in Creative Writing for more information about the programs offered.