About the Creative Writing Program

The Creative Writing Program at the University of Connecticut provides undergraduate students with writing courses in poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, drama, and screenwriting. Classes are offered from beginning to advanced levels, and are open to all students regardless of major. Students from any major can also elect to pursue a 12-credit sequence of courses leading to the Concentration in Creative Writing.

Graduate courses in creative writing are also offered, generally one per semester, and are also open to students from departments other than English on a space-available basis. While UConn does not currently offer a traditional M.F.A. or Ph.D. in Creative Writing, the English Department has in the past allowed a few exceptional students who have already been accepted into the M.A. or Ph.D. literature programs to write a creative thesis or dissertation. These students have usually applied to the English Graduate Program with an M.F.A. or significant publications already in hand. For information about this option, please contact the Acting Program Director Sean Forbes.

Undergraduate and graduate students are encouraged to participate in UConn’s thriving creative writing community. All students are invited to submit their work to the English Department’s numerous writing contests, as well as to The Long River Review, UConn’s nationally award-winning literary magazine.

Undergraduates may apply for positions as editors of The Long River Review. The Creative Writing Program also sponsors Poetic Journeys, a mass transportation poetry project featuring the work of UConn students. Graduate Student Teaching Assistants from the English Department are invited to apply for the positions of Creative Writing Program Assistant Director and Director of Poetic Journeys. Graduate Students who enter the Program with an M.F.A. may also apply to teach courses in the undergraduate Creative Writing sequence.

Undergraduates interested in working for the Program may apply for one of the several internships available each semester. These give students experience in writing press releases and public service announcements, developing public relations materials, and organizing visiting writer events.

In conjunction with other University departments and organizations, the Creative Writing Program hosts a stellar Visiting Writers Series each semester, including several short-term residencies by visiting authors. We also host The Wallace Stevens Poetry Program, which for 53 years has brought some of the world’s most exciting poets to the UConn. Writers who have visited us in the past five years include Martha Collins, Clayton Eshleman, Martín Espada, Anne Fadiman, Alice Fulton, Sam Hamill, Patricia Hampl, Andrew Hudgins, Mark Jarman, Allan Kurzweil, Phillis Levin, Phillip Lopate, Barry Lopez, Colum McCann, Lynne McMahon, Paul Muldoon, Naeem Murr, Patricia Powell, Adrienne Rich, Clare Rossini, Kate Rushin, Sherod Santos, Gjertrud Schnackenberg, Colm Toíbín, Ellen Bryant Voigt, Fay Weldon, Edmund White, Nancy Willard, and Adam Zagajewski. Twice a month the Program also hosts the Long River Live, a multi-genre arts/performance series that includes open-mic and featured performances/displays from students, faculty, and community members. Additionally, Career Workshops, generally held once every semester, offer students opportunities to talk to professionals in different editing, publishing, and writing fields. For more information about any of these events for the upcoming semester, see our Calendar.

The Creative Writing Program is affiliated with and receives support from the Aetna Chair of Writing.

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