The Master of Fine Arts program is a rigorous three-year residency combining in-depth study of literature with an intensive focus on fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and dramatic writing. The program is made up of a core of writers who have come to Alaska looking for a different, more attentive way of life and the support of a community of like-minded artists.
The program’s goal is to prepare students to be stronger writers, more independent thinkers, and well-rounded teachers. It offers several unique features to distinguish it as especially challenging and rewarding. Its participants may enroll in both multi-genre and genre-specific workshops as well as three genre-specific forms courses. A second year comprehensive exam requires students to read widely and then define their own future aesthetic goals. Third year students work closely with individual mentors as they prepare manuscripts for thesis defense and eventual publication.
The beauty and ruggedness of the Alaskan landscape offer a wide range of new experiences to the writer; students in the program receive not just an intellectual education, but an experiential one—an opportunity to live more simply and purposefully and in doing so develop new ways of seeing the world.