Spalding MFA alumni and students have published and produced more than 300 books, plays, and films.
The Spalding MFA Program has one of the strongest alumni associations going. Click below to learn about the upcoming alumni trip to Rome! And check out our list of twelve excellent opportunities available to alums—many of them offered at no cost.
The Trevi Fountain and Spanish Steps, the Colosseum and Roman Forum—the best sights of the Eternal City lie within walking distance of our hotel when the MFA Program’s 2016 summer residency travels to Rome. MFA alums and their guests are warmly invited to come along on the journey.
While students are in class, alums are free to observe lectures and panel discussions, spend solo time writing, or explore the city alone or with friends. Alums and guests are included on guided visits to the Roman Forum and Colosseum; the Galleria Borghese, which houses world-renowned paintings and sculptures; and a half-day excursion to the excavated ancient Roman city of Ostia Antica.
If you like, you can add one or all of these optional outings:
– a half-day visit to the Vatican Museums and the Cathedral of San Pietro
– a half-day walking tour of Rome’s Baroque and Catholic churches and palazzos, including a visit to one of Rome’s most beautiful plazas, Campidoglio Square, designed by Michelangelo
– a motorcoach excursion along the Appian Way to the lake country, where we’ll view the old Roman Acqueduct, the Pope’s summer residence, and several other important villas. On the way home, we’ll stop for a wine tasting.
We end the residency by celebrating our newest graduating class at a festive farewell dinner!
In addition to the events on our itinerary, MFA Alumni Association director Terry Price puts together optional dinners, readings, and other events for alums who’d enjoy the company. And our WorldStrides on-site staff member is always available to answer questions, provide cultural insights, and keep our travels flowing smoothly.
For a day-by-day itinerary, registration information, and more, click here.
Read on to see what alums say about traveling with the MFA Program:
Aimee Mackovic (Poetry/Screenwriting ’05): “I cannot recommend enough the magical experience of traveling with Spalding as an alum! Want to pop in on Sena’s lecture? Great! Want to spend three hours with other alums debating the contemporary American canon over a leisurely lunch? Fantastic! Want to spend the whole day sightseeing (or writing) by yourself then meet up with others for dinner? Excellent! It’s your trip! Traveling as part of Spalding lets you take a bit of your tribe with you, and bit of Splove.”
Alice Covington (Fiction ’13): “[The trip] injected me with renewed enthusiasm for the passion of writing that binds this extraordinary community. I shall return.”
Bonnie Johnson (Fiction ’04): “Age or previous travel abroad is not a factor, nor is venturing alone on the trip. We look after one another as needed, while being free to choose how one’s own time is spent. Terry tends our flock with a smile.”
Darlyn Kuhn (Creative Nonfiction/Poetry ’09): “Terry Price is ready with a big smile and a warm good morning on each day of the trip. He spends a great deal of time making sure that all the alums are comfortable and happy. Brad and I have traveled with Spalding University to Paris, London and Bath, Barcelona, Rome and Tuscany, Dublin and Galway, as well as Prague and Berlin. Our lives as writers and world citizens have been immeasurably enriched by these experiences, and Terry Price is a big reason that we are so eager to return year after year.”
See you in Rome!
The Spalding MFA program and the terrific, volunteer-run MFA Alumni Association offer graduates a wealth of support and benefits. Here are eight opportunities that don’t cost a penny for Spalding MFA alums, and four that do:
One: Lifetime access to the MFA portal page, including our archive of faculty lectures. Listen—for free!— to Sena and the rest of our amazing faculty deliver high-level talks on craft, major authors, and literary movements. (Alums can contact the MFA Office for login details.)
Two: Homecoming. You might want to bring some bourbon money, but the rest of Homecoming is free. Alumni workshops. Faculty lectures. A reading by newly published alums. SPLoveFest book expo. A film and play festival. The faculty-alum breakfast mixer. Panel discussions about teaching, pitching to agents, and supporting your published work. It’s inspiration, education, promotional opportunities, and a chance to reconnect with your writing community.
Three: Online workshops. Whether you’re in Vermont, L.A., or Singapore, any alum can participate in these video critique sessions. Just ask the MFA Alumni Association to connect you with other MFA alums who’d like to form a group.
Four: Post-grad residency assistant positions. In exchange for helping with behind-the-scenes work, a handful of alums get to participate in an entire Louisville residency, including taking part in a faculty-led workshop. The MFA Program springs for a shared room at the beautiful Brown Hotel, up to $300 for travel expenses, and a stipend to boot. A similar opportunity is available at our residencies abroad.
Five: Our social media reach. Share your news on the Facebook pages of both the MFA Program and the MFA Alumni Association. Check out Throwback Thursday for pictures from previous residencies and events. To put your news on the MFA Program’s Facebook page, email firstname.lastname@example.org. The Alum Association’s page, open only to Spalding MFAers, is ideal for sharing news or discussion within the alumni community.
Six: MFA blog. Sink into a weekly dose of writerly wisdom, rants, ponderings, and advice from MFA faculty members, staff, and alums. We’ll link to your website and blog in our list of alumni sites. Send your writerly news to “Life of a Writer: News and Events” at email@example.com.
Seven: Free registration for 15 alums at the annual AWP conference. AWP is the place to network in the academic and publishing worlds —and to reconnect with other Spalding MFAers at our official reading/cupcake-and-champagne event.
Eight: Membership in the Spalding MFA Alumni Association. When you graduate, you’re automatically inducted. And thanks to the astonishing dedication of our alumni volunteers, there are no membership dues and no fees.
Alums receive all these benefits absolutely free! They can also invest funds to receive yet more:
Nine: Regional events. The Alumni Association hosts events around the country, offering anything from an evening’s socializing to a weekend writing retreat.
Ten: SpaldingCon, our autumn alumni writing conference, featuring faculty-led workshops, master classes, talks from publishing professionals, and more. Think of it as the amped-up, more professionally focused version of Homecoming.
Eleven: A post-graduate residency, or even an entire post-grad semester. Alums are welcomed back “home” anytime for faculty-led study and a renewed connection to the community.
Twelve. International travel with our summer residencies in Greece, Rome, Barcelona and beyond. Part vacation, part reunion, these trips prove that your membership in the Spalding MFA family will keep taking you unexpected places, no matter how long ago your journey began.
Give back: Donate to the MFA Alumni Endowed Scholarship Fund
Questions? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org