University of Mississippi

M.F.A. Welcome


Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Writing

What’s all the excitement about?  Why’s everyone talking about the University of Mississippi M.F.A. program?  You’re in the right place to find out. Welcome to our website which will let you learn about the things that make our program unique.  View the short film by UM M.F.A.student Rachel Smith that shows us in action—in the classroom, in the town, at a few of our parties. Peruse the student stories in our e-brochure to learn why our graduates are succeeding in the bigger world and crediting UM with their results.  Check out our faculty profiles and learn why we boast writers who are not only engaged and spirited mentors but actively producing and publishing exciting work.  Learn what can happen when a small, select group of students (we only accept between 6-8 a year, out of a couple hundred applicants) are brought to a beautiful place and given FULL FUNDING and nurtured intensely (our student-teacher ratio approaches 4:1)—amazing  stuff.  The M.F.A. Program at the University of Mississippi: Be amazed, and be amazing.

—Beth Ann Fennelly, Director of the M.F.A. Program and Associate Professor of English 

Currently celebrating its tenth year, our MFA program has been ranked one of The Atlantic Monthly‘s “Top Five Up and Coming Programs,” and is listed among the Top Fifty MFA Programs by Poets & Writers. The Poets & Writers M.F.A. rankings “measure sixteen distinct program features for each of the 148 full-residency programs.” Features include funding, cost of living, selectivity, teaching load, curricular structure, and placement of graduates. That a program only ten years old has cracked the Tier One ranking is a notable accomplishment–congratulations to our current students, our growing list of distinguished alumni, our faculty and our supportive administration for this recognition. We specialize in what we do best, fiction and poetry, and supplement our specialities with creative nonfiction, screen writing, and eco-writing. Students here benefit from our well-endowed readings series (the fall of 2011, Visiting Writers included Michael Chabon and Jeffrey Eugenides, both Pulitzer Prize winners) and interactions with the John and Renee Grisham Writer-in-Residence (a yearly appointment for an emerging writer). A student-run readings series and our literary magazine, The Yalobusha Review, are just some of the opportunities that our students can take advantage of. Our environment is close-knit and encouraging, and Ole Miss was ranked in The Chronicle of Higher Education‘s 2010 list of “Great Colleges to Work For. We are located in Oxford, Mississippi, home of Faulkner’s Rowan Oak, literary conferences, the best bookstore in the South, an active music scene, and great restaurants, 70 miles from Memphis.