Featured Students & Alumni
Roy G. Guzmán, MFA 2017, Poetry
Roy G. Guzmán is a Honduran-American poet raised in Florida. They live in Minneapolis where they are currently working towards a PhD at our UMN. The author of the full-length collection Catrachos (Graywolf Press, 2020), Guzmán was the recipient of a 2017 Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowship and a 2016 Scribe for Human Rights Fellowship, among other awards. After the Pulse nightclub massacre in Orlando, their poem “Restored Mural for Orlando” was turned into a chapbook (Queerodactyl Press, 2016) by the same title, with the help of poet, visual artist, and fellow MFA alum D. Allen, to raise funds for the victims in Guzmán’s home state.
torrin a. greathouse, MFA 2022, Poetry
torrin (she/her or they/them) is a disabled trans woman poet from Central California and a current MFA candidate at the University of Minnesota. She is a 2021 National Endowment for the Arts fellow, has received other fellowships from the Effing Foundation for Sex Positivity, Zoeglossia, and the University of Arizona Poetry Center. Her work has appeared in Poetry Magazine, the New York Times, the Kenyon Review, Foglifter, and the Academy of American Poets Poem-a-Day series, among other outlets. torrin's debut collection, Wound from the Mouth of a Wound (Milkweed, 2020), was selected by Aimee Nezhukumatathil for the Ballard Spahr Prize for Poetry.
"For someone like me, coming from a non-traditional writing background, the MFA at the University of Minnesota has provided a really important space for honing my craft and working closely with other brilliant writers. Here, I was able to participate in, and benefit from, the vibrant Twin Cities arts scene. The financial support the program offers has meant an immense amount as well, letting me focus wholly on my writing while also getting back on my feet after a period of homelessness. Alongside Professor Douglas Kearney, I helped work on research into alternative workshop pedagogy, which will go on to inform my own work as an educator. The MFA also gave me the chance to complete my first two collections of poetry, the first of which was published by a local Minnesota press."
Brian Malloy, MFA 2006, Fiction
Brian’s novels include The Year of Ice (St. Martin’s Press), Brendan Wolf (St. Martin’s Press), After Francesco (Kensington Publishing) and the young adult novel Twelve Long Months (Scholastic). His books have been a Book Sense pick, a New York Times New and Notable title, a Publishers Marketplace Buzz Book, and Apple Books Best of the Month, and a Booklist editors’ choice. Honors include a 2021 National Women’s Book Association Reading Group Selection, Minnesota State Arts Board artist grants, a Jerome Foundation travel/study grant, a 2003 American Library Association Alex Award, and a 2009 Minnesota Book Award. His nonfiction has appeared in Out, The Readerville Journal, and the Lambda Literary Award-winning anthology The Man I Might Become (Marlowe & Co.). He teaches at libraries, correctional facilities, colleges, and community organizations.
”I’d been working full-time for over 20 years and sneaking in writing when I could - vacations, weekends, etc. I applied because I wanted 3 years to focus on my writing and to work with the talented faculty, particularly Julie Schumacher, Charles Baxter, and Trish Hampl. Their feedback and guidance helped me to focus on the core of the work, kill my darlings, identify themes, and create a satisfying story arc. I’m not a fan of beautifully written but depressing-as-hell literary fiction, so it was a pleasure to work with writers who appreciated emotional range and the use of humor in creative writing. I certainly grew more confident in my voice, and learned how to carefully listen without judgement or defensiveness. As an extra bonus, I learned how to teach creative writing - which also taught me a lot about the craft of writing - and I continue to teach at libraries, correctional facilities, colleges, and community organizations.”
Kathleen Glasgow, MFA 2001, Fiction
Kathleen Glasgow is the author of the New York Times bestselling novel Girl in Pieces, as well as How to Make Friends with the Dark and You’d Be Home Now. She lives and writes in Tucson, Arizona. She is also the author of the new book You’d be Home Now and a co-writer of the upcoming novel The Agathas. The mother of two children, Kathleen enjoys spending time with her kids when she isn’t writing.
Kendra Atleework, MFA 2016, Nonfiction
Kendra Atleework is the author of Miracle Country: A Memoir of a Family and a Landscape, winner of the Sigurd F. Olson Nature Writing Award, the 2021 Women Writing the West WILLA Literary Award in Creative Nonfiction, and a 2021 pick for Nevada’s statewide books club, Nevada Reads. Kendra got her BA at Scripps College and holds an MFA in creative writing from the University of Minnesota. She has been awarded fellowships and residencies from the Bread Loaf Writers Conference, the Anderson Center, and the Minnesota State Arts Board. Her writing has appeared in Best American Essays, The Washington Post, The Atlantic, The Los Angeles Times, and elsewhere. She is a recipient of the Ellen Meloy Desert Writers Award and lives in her hometown of Bishop, California, where she can be found roaming the mountains and desert and growing a big garden.
"The MFA program at the University of Minnesota helped me so much in completing my first book. The support and mentorship I received from faculty and fellow students were a gift. Those three years of apprenticeship taught me to love and appreciate the craft of writing. I learned how to read like a writer, met my agent, built the foundation of my writing career through publications and connections, and wrote a solid draft of my first book. I am forever grateful to the wonderful people at the U of M."