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Creative Writing Program

Margaret Lazarus DeanMargaret Lazarus Dean, Director

UT offers a PhD in English with a creative dissertation, and both an MFA in Creative Writing and a BA with a creative writing concentration. The idea here is to blend creative work with literary studies for a degree that helps candidates realize their potential as writers and scholars, plus makes them more viable in the marketplace.

All of our PhD candidates and MFA students are fully funded, with generous opportunities for additional financial support. Our Writers in the Library reading series has brought in a stunning list of writers—Dorothy Allison, Charles Baxter, Nikky Finney, Terrance Hayes, Edward Hirsch, and Jesmyn Ward, just to name a few––many of whom not only gave readings, but also directed workshops and worked one-on-one with students.

Our graduate students take advantage of teaching opportunities in a thriving undergraduate program and hold key editorial positions on Grist: The Journal for Writers. Our creative faculty (Margaret Lazarus Dean, Joy Harjo, Christopher Hebert, Marilyn Kallet, MIchael Knight, and Art Smith) is as deeply committed to the teaching of writing as to writing well.

The English department has an outstanding record for job placement for PhDs, and our MAs and undergrads have gone on to further study at the top universities in the country.  We think that speaks highly, not only of the program and of the people here and this community of writers, but also of the place itself.

A great place to do your best work.

For more information about the Creative Writing Program, contact Margaret Lazarus Dean at mdean4@utk.edu

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