Five University Jobs You Can Get with Your MFA (That Aren’t Adjuncting)

You have your MFA in hand and you’re looking for a job. For whatever reason – money, lack of class availability, the desire to try something new – you find that you aren’t looking for adjunct work. But you love the university setting and you don’t want to leave. When you’re checking out the staffContinue reading “Five University Jobs You Can Get with Your MFA (That Aren’t Adjuncting)”

MFA Flashback: The Bound Thesis

Once I defended my thesis, the graduation process was far from over. I was elated to be done with the oral defense of my thesis. It was a wonderful experience, and one that prepared me for future job interviews. But the saga of the thesis copies had yet to begin. As a graduate student, yourContinue reading “MFA Flashback: The Bound Thesis”

My First Novel: Stepping Stones in the Mire

I recently applied for a fellowship that had me rummaging through my files for a screenplay I wrote during graduate school. I began the screenplay during an Introduction to Screenwriting course and expanded it during an Advanced Screenwriting independent study. When I opened the file with the name of the screenplay I had worked onContinue reading “My First Novel: Stepping Stones in the Mire”

MFA Flashback: Visiting Writers

J.T. Dutton and Me, 2010, Photo by UAF staff photographer One of the best experiences during my time as an MFA student was the visiting writer series that my department sponsored. Even though we were in Alaska, my program brought amazingly talented and accomplished writers up to visit. The visiting writer would give a lectureContinue reading “MFA Flashback: Visiting Writers”

A New Job Begins and a Piece of Paper Arrives

Last week I started a temporary job as a full-time administrative assistant. It’s a wonderful position – great co-workers, a quiet but productive office, and it’s on a university campus. In my mind this type of job has one really wonderful feature – I can leave it behind at 5PM and spend the rest ofContinue reading “A New Job Begins and a Piece of Paper Arrives”

MFA Flashback: Comprehensive Exam

In addition to coursework, students in the MFA program at the University of Alaska Fairbanks must complete two tasks: compose a thesis and pass a comprehensive exam.  What is this exam? The exam is in February, and MFA students are expected to take it in their second year. It is a pass/ fail exam. IfContinue reading “MFA Flashback: Comprehensive Exam”

MFA Flashback: Office Space

I entered the MFA program at the University of Alaska Fairbanks with a Teaching Assistantship. In return for teaching one section of a beginning composition course each semester, my tuition was waived and I received a small stipend.  Magazines about MFA programs urged me to consider TAships carefully. “Do you really want to spend yourContinue reading “MFA Flashback: Office Space”