The Low-Residency Model
The Low-Residency model allows students to pursue their writing aspirations while maintaining their commitments to career and family. Each July, on three occasions over the course of their study, students come to the Reinhardt campus for the 10-day Residency. In the intervening semesters, they are enrolled in an independent study with a writing mentor and in four online courses in which they Skype with the instructor and their fellow students.
There are three Residencies in the student’s MFA Program, at the beginning, middle, and end. Prior to the first Residency, incoming students also arrive on campus for a two-day orientation program and practice workshop. At their final Residency, students give a craft lecture and a public reading before graduating.
At the Residencies, students can stay in the dorms and eat in the cafeteria. They attend numerous writing workshops in their genre each morning, craft lectures, readings, seminars, and one-on-one consultations. There will be a number of visiting writers reading each evening, as well as teaching various craft lectures during the residency. They can meet and interact with the vistiing writers. There will also be several off-campus excursions during the Residency for writing experiences and prompts.
During the Fall and Spring semesters, students will work one-on-one with a writing mentor in the independent-study classes entitled Creative Writing I, Creative Writing II, Creative Writing III, Thesis Part I (Critical Essay), and Thesis Part II (Creative Writing Project). This apprenticeship with a well-known writer is the heart of the Low-Residency MFA experience. Students receive detailed feedback and critiques that will enable them to perfect their craft as a writer. They will also receive instruction and advice on how to submit work for publication and appropriate publishing venues. The culmination of the independent studies is a book-length Creative Thesis, which can provide students with their first full manuscript for publication.
During the Fall and Spring semesters, students will also take a set of online courses called Reading Image, Reading Voice, Reading Story and Reading Dialogue. The classes will be offered in an 8-week format and students of all genres will take the classes together, reading and analyzing texts to study craft elements. A weekly Skype session will allow students to interact with one another and with the instructor. Additionally, there is a Study Abroad program where students can travel in May to Ireland (2018), Ecuador (2019), and London (2020). This is in conjunction with a cultural and literary survey class of the destination.