VCFA launches International MFA in Creative Writing & Literary Translation

icelandVermont College of Fine Arts announces its latest academic program, the International MFA in Creative Writing & Literary Translation. The new low-residency international master of fine arts program—the first of its kind in the world—is an exclusively global program for writers and writing, with a focus on transnational literature in English and world literature in translation.

Modeled after VCFA’s world-renowned low-residency MFA programs, the International MFA in Creative Writing & Literary Translation brings together the high quality and prestige of VCFA’s graduate education excellence, with the opportunity to engage in creative writing and literary translation in a wholly international context.

“I am so thrilled to announce our newest MFA program—one that introduces VCFA to a larger, global audience,” said VCFA President Thomas Christopher Greene. “The International MFA in Creative Writing & Literary Translation is a perfect complement to the College’s graduate arts programs and fits directly into our new mission, which states that ‘VCFA is a global community of artists continuously redefining what it means to be an arts college,’” Greene added.

The program will be co-directed by author Xu Xi, a visiting faculty member and former faculty chair of the MFA in Writing program, and novelist, translator and VCFA alumnus Evan Fallenberg (‘01).

“We’re both really excited to be heading up what’s going to be the world’s very first low-residency International MFA in Creative Writing & Literary Translation. Our residencies will rotate globally, with a curriculum that focuses on international writing and literature, as well as translation. The literary world is global and writers need to broaden their perspective beyond their own borders through immersion in other cultures and languages, and through interactions with writers from other parts of the world,” Xu and Fallenberg announced in a joint statement.

The program will offer three areas of study—fiction, nonfiction, and literary translation—taught at brief residencies and by distance mentoring. Students will be required to attend a total of four residencies over the course of their degree—three international and one at the VCFA campus in Montpelier, Vermont. Students must also complete four semesters of creative and critical writing, during which they will work one-on-one with a faculty mentor by distance, followed by a final creative thesis in the fifth semester.

VCFA has gathered together a global community of faculty and translators, including:

  • Sybil Baker (fiction/nonfiction)
  • Jason Grunebaum (literary translation)
  • Robin Hemley (nonfiction/fiction)
  • Tabish Khair (fiction/nonfiction)
  • Mark Polizzotti (nonfiction/literary translation)
  • James Scudamore (fiction)
  • Ira Sukrungruang (nonfiction/fiction)
  • Madeleine Thien (fiction)

The International MFA in Creative Writing & Literary Translation program will begin accepting applications in January 2018. Up to two full ride scholarships will be offered each academic year. Residencies for the 2018-2019 academic year include Iceland in September 2018 plus Hong Kong and VCFA Montpelier in March and August 2019, respectively.

For more information, visit vcfa.edu/international-writing.