In my time at SNC, both as an undergraduate and as a graduate student in the MFA in Creative Writing program, what drove me was a deep passion for literature and for music. My calling in life, should there be such a thing, is in the humanities and the arts. I have only one desire: to inspire passion and drive creativity in others while simultaneously honing my own. The humanities and the arts are crucial to our development as individuals, and I fear that they are slowly fading away to apathy or other materialistic pursuits.
“If I’m able to spark just one person with a discussion about a book, an essay, or a conversation about music, then I’ve done something fulfilling and necessary.
My professors drove me to be a better student and a better person, but they also gave me the space and the encouragement to find my own way. I gained confidence and validation as an artist and a critical thinker, and developed my passions into something that I can bring into the world. Some of my greatest challenges at SNC were the ones I created for myself. I wanted to challenge myself to do more, strive harder, and dig deeper. I told myself that if I could look back at my time at SNC and know full well that I gave it my best effort, and exhausted every option I could, I would be happy with the results. I can confidently say that I am.
“Writing was, and still is, something that makes me feel at my most vibrant and alive.”
When I decided to pursue poetry at a more serious and critical level, the stellar faculty in the MFA in Creative Writing program made it was an easy decision to stay at SNC, and the low residency model allowed me to explore other avenues at the same time. After graduating with my MFA in Creative Writing August of 2016, I’m continuing my literary career at the University of Toledo in their MA in English Literature program. Creatively, I’m working on experimental forms of poetry dealing with erasures, negative space, and language poetry, and I’ve been submitting a chapbook version of my MFA thesis to contests.
Of course, people always ask (as with any humanities degree) “what are you going to do with it?”
There’s numerous fields open after an MFA: teaching (at the college and public school level), editorial work, publishing, tutoring, communications jobs, technical writing, non-profit work, community based outreaches, etc. Right now, my future is unknown and that’s quite alright. I can’t say where I’ll be in ten years. I’d like to be involved in the publishing and editing world of literature, but I may find that teaching is my calling, or a hybridization of the two. Anything that lets me share my passions with the world is where I want to be, be it in a classroom or a studio.