The University of Maine at Farmington’s Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing is the only such degree in the state of Maine, and one of only a few in New England. It’s a selective program that offers a strong combination of writing and literature courses in the context of study in the liberal arts.
Faculty: The professors in the creative writing program are not only effective teachers, but active professional writers, who have published their work in such magazines as Creative Nonfiction, The Atlantic Monthly, The New Yorker, Orion and the Georgia Review. They have among them books of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction, screenplays and state and national prizes and fellowships.
The Alice James Books: One of the nation’s most important poetry presses, Alice James Books has made its home on the UMF campus since 1994. Each semester the press offers students apprenticeships in every aspect of book publishing, from design and editing to distribution and marketing.
Workshops: The classes are small (normally no larger than 15 people) and the writing community is very connected. The program features four areas of writing: fiction, poetry, nonfiction, and screenwriting with additional courses offered in other special areas. The students hone their craft with regular conferences with professors and a strong workshop environment.
The Apprenticeship: A special feature of the program is the writing apprenticeship and internship requirement, which allows BFA majors to work for area newspapers, one of three student publications on campus, Alice James Books, or choose from many other opportunities.
The Writers Guild: A highly active student organization for writers on campus, the Writers Guild sponsors student workshops and readings, discussions and dinners with visiting writers, and trips to readings and writers conferences from Fort Kent to Boston.
The Visiting Writers Series: BFA students attend readings by some of America’s most important writers, who also visit writing classes. These writers include winners of the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and other prizes. Past writers include: Terrance Hayes, Zakes Mda, Sy Montgomery, Steve Almond, Lucille Clifton, Tobias Wolfe, Major Jackson, Billy Collins, Richard Ford, Tony Hoagland, Bill Roorbach, and Mary Oliver, among many others.
The Graduates: Recent graduates in UMF’s writing program have begun careers in journalism (radio, TV, and print), teaching, librarianship, and publishing. Skills learned in the program are also appropriate for technical writing, advertising, and public relations. Writing majors going on to graduate study have taken degrees at Columbia University; Cornell University; North Carolina, and Virginia among many others.
Documentary Studies in Radio, Writing and Photography: When you become a student at UMF you gain the special privilege of also being able to study documentary photography, radio, and writing at the SALT Institute for Documentary Studies in Portland, ME. No other University of Maine campuses share this exciting relationship with SALT. This acclaimed, long-standing institute educates students in “ethical storytelling” in all three genres, focusing on training students to collect and tell stories of Maine life. UMF students can study there for a whole semester, taking 16 credits of courses for the same price as UMF tuition. Take a look at the SALT website for more details. www.salt.edu/
Contact this department:
111 South St.
Farmington, ME 04938
Phone: (207) 778-7425
TDD: (207) 778-7000