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C.bronco
02-21-2007, 05:25 PM
I have a list of some schools who have good undergraduate programs in creative writing. Please add to my list and discuss amongst yourselves:

Brown University, RI
Drew University, NJ
NYU
New School University, NY
MIT
Sarah Lawrence College, NY
Grinnell College, IA
Georgia Tech, GA
Chapman University, CA
Dartmouth College, NH

C.bronco
02-21-2007, 06:42 PM
Does anyone have any comments about your own alma maters?

calamity
02-21-2007, 06:45 PM
I chose not to do a creative writing program but I have friends who went to Iowa. Some loved it and others had to learn to write all over again after they graduated. I think it just depends on what you're trying to get out of it. My husband went to Harvard on a full scholarship for Lit and dropped out because he despised the politics inside the academy and how they treated the arts. I have friends who really benefited from the experience, but I think one problem may be that more and more young writers believe they need these programs to 'succeed' as a writer when all that's really needed is some self-discipline to study the art and hone your craft. Personally, I'm glad I chose not to do one because I have friends who are completely dependent upon 'workshopping' to finish their projects. I swear, they can't decide whether something is good or not without the approval of their workshop. I don't know. I suppose I have mixed feelings about creative writing programs.

C.bronco
02-21-2007, 06:48 PM
I had a good experience, though the writing was offered as a minor, not a major. The faculty in the program were great.

The_Grand_Duchess
02-21-2007, 06:55 PM
Some of those schools are a little expensive meaning massive student loans if you're poor like me. I agree with Calamity on this one, I personally don't think that you really need to be in a program to succed in creative writing. I think that you can study that on your own.

They didn't offer more than a few classes in creative writing at my schools but they did offer many extracurriculars for the students that focused on that. I think that was much better becuase it meant that even people who were in majors far outside the realm of creative writing could gain some experiance.

C.bronco
02-21-2007, 06:58 PM
Even so, there are those who want a college with a good program, and because I am a guidance counselor, I have to come up with appropriate suggestions. I know which writers are on the faculty at a number of schools here in the Northeast, but was hoping to get some input from other parts of the US.

The_Grand_Duchess
02-21-2007, 07:06 PM
Well are you only looking at creative writing specifically? Wouldn't it also help to reccomend students to a school that had strong English programs as well? I can't be much help in this becuase I too am in the northeast but as far as english programs go when I was looking UCLA had one.

C.bronco
02-21-2007, 07:10 PM
I was looking specifically for creative writing. Most schools have English majors.

calamity
02-21-2007, 07:26 PM
I've heard Warren Wilson is pretty good. But it's low-residency. Another good low-residency would be the new program at Provincetown. I have a friend that's going to Columbia and he likes it. I know people who went to Indiana University and they had mixed experiences. UNC Greensboro has a solid reputation. St Mary's outside of San Fran has a solid reputation. UT at Austin is supposed to be really good. University of Virginia has a solid faculty.

tjwriter
02-21-2007, 08:02 PM
USI (http://www.usi.edu), where I went got a stupid business degree (great school, but Tori made a bad decision).

They have a Bachelor of Arts in English with a Creative Writing Emphasis as seen on this page http://www.usi.edu/libarts/english/degrees.asp#BAcreative

The emphasis degrees usually mean that once you get some basic courses out of the way, you can focus almost solely on your area.

USI is a great school, and I have a blast with the Liberal Arts classes I took. And a lot of the professor are really good.

weatherfield
02-21-2007, 08:37 PM
This is kind of a leap in logic, but the University of Montana has one of the top MFA programs in the country, and their English Department in general seems very good. Chances are, it would also be a good place to look at for creative writing students interested in a BA. Of course, some students may feel that Missoula hasn't quite got the same appeal as, say, Chicago or NYC ;) but I was looking at the program a few years ago and the faculty sounded excellent.

C.bronco
02-21-2007, 08:42 PM
Thanks! I know some schools who have MFA's in writing, but no writing undergraduate degree (like Colgate). If this thread works out, it could be a good source for our younger AWers. :)

chibeth
02-21-2007, 10:25 PM
Miami U of Ohio has a really strong creative writing program. The grad program is better than the undergrad, but it's still a good choice for someone who wants a more affordable option without sacrificing quality.

*They're also very open to genre writers. Or at least they were three years ago while I was there. :)

C.bronco
02-21-2007, 10:38 PM
That's a good school. I have kids applying there every year.
Can anyone tell me about the Univ. of Pittsburgh's writing program?

Will Lavender
02-21-2007, 10:57 PM
I went to Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York. (It's usually referred to as the Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts.)

It's a creative writing focus at an art school. If you like art, especially progressive art, you might be interested in Bard. It's also a summers-only program, so most folks can fit it around a working schedule.

I've heard Hollins College in Virginia has a fine program.

Spalding University here in Louisville, Kentucky has a pretty solid faculty.

The New School and Columbia University in NYC.

Will Lavender
02-21-2007, 10:58 PM
That's a good school. I have kids applying there every year.
Can anyone tell me about the Univ. of Pittsburgh's writing program?

I believe Michael Chabon went there. He wrote The Mysteries of Pittsburgh while he was a student.

pepperlandgirl
02-21-2007, 11:21 PM
The University of Utah has a good Creative Writing program. Minor for undergrads, MFA and PhD for grads.

TrainofThought
02-21-2007, 11:56 PM
Here are a few I looked up for you with the links.

University of Wisconsin (http://creativewriting.wisc.edu/undergraduate.php)-WI
Columbia University (http://www.columbia.edu/cu/writing/undergraduate-program/index.html)-NY
University of Memphis (http://cas.memphis.edu/english/undergrad/creative.htm)-TN
University of Louisville (http://coldfusion.louisville.edu/webs/a-s/english/undergrad.cfm?page=creative)-KY
Northwestern University (http://www.english.northwestern.edu/undergraduate/majorwrite.html)-IL
University of Oxford (http://www.conted.ox.ac.uk/courses/AwardBearing/creative_writing/udcw.asp)-UK

Sassenach
02-22-2007, 12:18 AM
Even so, there are those who want a college with a good program, and because I am a guidance counselor, I have to come up with appropriate suggestions. I know which writers are on the faculty at a number of schools here in the Northeast, but was hoping to get some input from other parts of the US.

People actually still listen to guidance counselors? In my day, they knew squat.

PVish
02-22-2007, 12:38 AM
I've heard Hollins College in Virginia has a fine program.

It's Hollin University now, and I've heard their MFA program in creative writing is pretty competitive. They have the weeklong "Tinker Mountain Writers' Workshop" in summer: http://www.hollins.edu/tmww
and they have a literary festival every March: http://www.hollins.edu/news-events/litfest/litfest.htm.

I've been to a couple of their lit fests and found them interesting.

jodiodi
02-22-2007, 01:36 AM
The University of Georgia has a good creative writing program.

And even though it's not 'creative', the Grady School of Journalism is excellent (they give out the Peabody awards).

Shadow_Ferret
02-22-2007, 02:19 AM
I chose not to do a creative writing program but I have friends who went to Iowa. Some loved it and others had to learn to write all over again after they graduated.

I have no idea about Iowa now, but I thought back in the 70s they had one of the most respected creative writing programs in the country.

badducky
02-23-2007, 03:43 PM
A useful list:

http://www.usnews.com/usnews/edu/college/majors/brief/major_23-05_brief.php

Also:

How can we forget the University of Houston (www.uh.edu and info on their graduate writing program at http://www.class.uh.edu/cwp/)?

In US News first ever ranking of Writing Programs (Graduate level), UH was tied with Johns Hopkins University for number 2 below the University of Iowa.

Also, this top notch writing program (my alma mater) is in an inexpensive University. Writers who couldn't get into Johns Hopkins, undergrad, also might have less difficulty acquiring admission at UH.

I am, on the whole, wary to recommend anyone to any writing program as a career choice.

I strongly urge anyone to carefully construct their degree program to apply to some kind of actual career, based on my experience having to turn nothing into something after my degree. UH and every other University, have some excellent programs that can tie directly into major career fields, but also have some real stinkers.

The key to finding the best Creative Writing program for any student, of course, is finding out who they like to read, then seeing where those authors teach - if they do.

Also, what degrees did those authors get? Would that degree be a better, more viable option. Imagine Sci-Fi without Philosophers like Scalzi, Scientists like Vernor Vinge and Greg Bear, and the techno-punks that studied english and cinema (William Gibson) and dabble in hi-tech urban planning (Corey Doctorow). Equally difficult is imagining fantasy without the many, many anthropologists, historians, and theatre majors.

I learned more about writing after my degree while working at Starbucks than I did during my degree. Yes, some small things carried over. Something always will. But, academic workshops are only useful to a point. That point can be reached with good writer groups and good reading friends.

Before signing up for any Creative Writing Program, be sure to teach kids the magic of a Cost Benefit Analysis. UH was a top notch program that cost less for a Texas Resident than my Catholic High School. I have my debts, but they aren't crippling. And, I know lots of people from the expensive schools that didn't make it. I may not make it much further than I have, but my normal advance for my book more than covered my remaining student loans.