MFA FA Tuition Page

Financial Aid/Tuition

a top-10 low residency MFA program

Poets & Writers, year after year after year

By embarking on an MFA program, you’re making a significant investment in your education. Below, you’ll find all the information you need in order to understand the cost of the program and your options for financial aid, scholarships, and assistantships.

Tuition, Fees, and Other Costs

The Spalding low residency MFA program is a 65-hour degree. The four core semesters include a 3-credit-hour residency session and a 12-credit-hour independent study session. A 5-credit-hour capstone residency completes the course of study. Through summer 2017, tuition for the program is $560 per credit hour.

For Louisville residencies, students are responsible for the cost of travel, housing, and some meals, although many residency meals are included. The cost for housing ranges from $450 to $900 for nine nights at the Brown Hotel, a four-star historic hotel where faculty and most students stay. Parking in the hotel garage costs $11 a day. Parking on campus is free. Students can also make their own housing arrangements.

For summer residencies, students are responsible for the cost of travel, housing, and meals. The estimated travel cost is $3,900-4,900, depending on the location.

The cost of books depends on the student’s individual reading list, but an estimate is $200-$250. If packets are exchanged with the mentor via postal mail, postage might range from $150 to $200.

Student Loans

Federal student loans for graduate school are available to most U. S. citizens (and to eligible non-citizens) unless they have defaulted on previous student loans or have reached the lifetime limit (see Students in the Spalding low residency MFA program are full-time graduate students and are usually eligible to borrow up to about $20,500 per year. See a list of Financial Aid FAQs here.

Even before being accepted to the MFA Program, students interested in student loans may fill out the federal form at Spalding’s code is 001960.

After an applicant has been admitted to the program, Spalding’s Financial Aid Office can provide financial aid package information. Newly admitted students may contact the Financial Aid Specialist at (502) 873-4333 or (800) 896-8941, ext. 4333.

Although no grants or fellowships are available through Spalding University, the MFA Program does offer scholarships and assistantships.

Scholarship Funds

In 2014, the Spalding low residency MFA program awarded 38 scholarships totaling $42,900 from the following funds:

  • MFA in Writing Scholarship Fund for Minorities.These scholarships of $500-$1,000 are for new students and are based on merit, then on need. (Minority is defined as person of color.)
  • MFA in Writing Scholarship Fund. Scholarships of $500-$750 to new students based on merit, then on need.
  • MFA Alumni Endowed Scholarship. Scholarships for new students, based on need.
  • Terry Price Scholarship. Each year, a new student in fiction is awarded a scholarship from this fund, based on need.
  • Audrey Wasson and Carol Leseure Endowed Scholarship in Poetry. Each year, a new student in poetry is awarded a scholarship from this fund, based on need.
  • Diana M. Raab Scholarship in Creative Nonfiction: A $250 scholarship for a new creative nonfiction student. This scholarship can be renewed each semester as long as the student returns the following semester and remains in good standing in the program. This scholarship is generally awarded to a new student every two years.
  • Eileen Spinelli Writing for Children Scholarship. Each semester, a new student in writing for children and young adults is awarded a scholarship of $250, based on need.
  • Kentucky Teachers Scholarship. A scholarship for Kentucky teachers of any subject and at any level, K through university. Available to new students.
  • Bob Keith Travel Scholarship. Each summer, a new student is awarded a scholarship of $500-$1,000 from this scholarship fund.

How to Apply for a Scholarship

Newly accepted students apply for a scholarship by emailing Program Director Sena Jeter Naslund at describing their need and stating the desire to be considered for a scholarship. Use the subject line “Scholarship Request.” The deadline for application is April 1 for the spring or summer semester and October 1 for the fall semester.

How to Donate to a Scholarship Fund

Scholarships are made possible by generous donations of alumni, faculty, students, and friends of the Spalding low residency MFA program. Anyone interested in donating to a scholarship fund or creating a named scholarship should contact Bert Griffin, Director of Advancement and Philanthropy, at or visit

Graduate Assistantships

For second-, third-, and fourth-semester students, graduate assistantships are available that result in tuition remission of about $600-$1,800 per semester. The amount of the assistantship depends on its nature and the number of hours a student commits to it. For example, a 5-hour-per-week assistantship earns $1,200. Assistantships may involve working on social media for the MFA program, handling administrative duties in the MFA office, or serving as a student editor for The Louisville Review. Other types of assistantships may be offered. Students do not have to live in Louisville to apply.

Assistantships are competitive and are awarded for one semester only, though a student may re-apply in subsequent semesters. In 2014, the program awarded 26 assistantships totaling about $34,000.

The deadline to apply for an assistantship is August 28 for the fall semester, February 28 for the spring or summer semester.



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