|How to get in the door
1. Meet these academic requirements
You need a Bachelor's degree in any discipline and an unofficial transcript.
2. Demonstrate talent
We'll look at your grades, of course; but what we are really hungry
for is talent, so we need to read what you can write.
If you're a poet, send us up to 10 pages of poetry.
If you're a fiction writer, send us 20-25 pages (a short story,
the start of a novel, or several short stories that total 20-25 pages). Sending more than 25 pages won't help your
If you're applying for our creative nonfiction program, send us no more than 20 pages
of prose memoir writing, which can be one or more personal essays or an extract from a longer memoir piece.
All the fiction and creative nonfiction pages you send us must be double-spaced and in a twelve-point font. Poetry may be single-spaced or double-spaced.
3. Apply online (by clicking here)
When you apply online, simply follow the instructions. You can call Graduate Admissions on 212.396.6049 for assistance. Submit the application form and all other application materials (including scans of your unofficial college transcripts) online. The admissions code is 523. There is no specialization code. In its place, please specify your genre (poetry, fiction, or memoir). Online applications must be submitted no later than February 1.
You'll need two letters of recommendation, both of which need to be submitted online by your recommenders no later than February 1. You'll find instructions for exactly how to do this on the online application form.
When the online application form asks which other colleges you're applying to, if you don't list any colleges we'll assume you've applied to lots but would rather not say.
If you are applying only to Hunter please write "Hunter Only." When we ask you what other colleges you have applied to we would really like to know.
4. 500 words explaining why you are right for us (and vice versa).
In administration-speak this is the “statement of purpose” that accompanies your application. In real life it’s a 500 word letter in which you tell us who you are. Even more importantly, it is your opportunity to tell us what you understand about where you are applying.
Before you write a word you should have read the most important work of the three writers who would teach you at Hunter. You should have also read their interviews and visited their websites. You will have attended the Open House if that is possible. Lastly, you will have also read this website carefully.
To check how successful your letter is, try changing the name Hunter to Iowa (or NYU or Michigan). If the resulting letter makes no sense it is absolutely perfect.’
5. For creative nonfiction only
We’re revising our Memoir MFA which means our application dates have changed and the new course will be retitled Creative Nonfiction. To put these changes in place will take a moment. For this reason our next application deadline is not until February 1, 2020, when you should submit a 500-word proposal outlining your creative nonfiction idea. This shouldn't be formatted as a book proposal -- it's simply a brief description of the type of material you think you'll write about, if you come to the Hunter MFA.
6. Make sure you know who the faculty are
Your reasons for coming to Hunter might include its convenience
on the subway, or the very reasonable tuition costs. These are both
good reasons, but not what the Hunter MFA is all about, which is
to assemble the best collection of students and faculty in the country.
We'll be spending a lot of time reading your work and then finding
out who you are. Likewise, to better understand what you are getting
into, you should find out more about us. See
Who will teach you.
7. Don't miss the application deadline
Your online application must be submitted by February
8. When you can expect to hear something
We expect to make our short lists and long lists by the third week
in March. If you are on the short list, we will contact you to tell
you so. We will then schedule an interview, after which we would
hope to offer you a place. You will have a week to accept or reject.
If you are on the long list you will hear the news early in April.
If there is a place available, we will schedule an interview. If
you are then offered a place, you will have one week to accept or
reject our offer. Then you will be sent a formal acceptance letter
and will not hear from us again until the first week in June, when
we send you your registration packet, which will include information
on your literature course options and the schedule of classes.