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Residency in Paris

Ashland MFA in Creative Writing Paris Residency

Write in the City of Light

ENG 502: MFA in Paris, June 17-July 1, 2017

“America is my country, and Paris is my hometown.”
- Gertrude Stein

You will embark on a two-week residency abroad, exploring the beautiful city of Paris through the eyes of a writer. Paris holds one of the greatest collections of cultural resources in the world, and its monuments, museums, parks, cafes, and shops will be our classroom. Students will participate in intensive workshops, discussions, readings, and in the literary and cultural life of the city as we begin to understand why Gertrude Stein said, “America is my country, and Paris is my hometown.”

The tour will include workshops with faculty mentors as well as craft seminars and evening readings with writers living in Paris.

Who May Participate in the Trip?

  • Students currently enrolled in the Ashland University MFA Program can participate.  The Paris Residency may be used as a substitute for the on-campus ENG 502 summer residency.  The Paris Residency is open to students at all levels in the program, however, first-year students and third-year students who participate in the Paris Residency will also need to attend the on-campus residency.
  • Students currently enrolled in the Ashland University MFA Program who have already taken ENG 502 may choose to take the course a second time during the Paris residency.
  • Students currently enrolled in other MFA programs.
  • Qualified undergraduate students.
  • Ashland University MFA graduates OR graduates of other MFA programs.
  • Non-degree-seeking writers.

Spouses and partners may join the group without paying the MFA program tuition portion of the total cost.

Ashland MFA Paris Residency

Cafe in Paris - photo by MFA student Karen Swortzel

Student Comments from 2015 Ashland MFA Paris Residency (June 13-27).

"This trip increased my awareness in so many different areas. It's unreal & truly remarkable."

"Wonderful life changing experience in terms of developing my writing and affecting my cultural literacy."

"The best part was just being in Paris, being able to see it. Highlights for me were the D'Orsay and Cluny museums, Shakespeare and Company Bookstore, Notre Dame, the Seine and its islands, the Tuileries garden, cafes and shops, [and] street performers."

* The 2015 Paris Residency featured Visiting Writers Claire Malroux and Marilyn Hacker

* Workshops were led by MFA Faculty member and prize winning poet, Angie Estes.

* 2016 Workshop leaders will be Angie Estes (poetry) and Tom Larson (prose). 

* For an inside look you can view the 2015 Pre-Departure Handbook.

Estimated Program Cost


$500 Deposit due by November 1, 2016.

INCLUDED: Tuition (3 credit hours), ground transportation, international health insurance, admission to the Louvre and other museums, Paris tour and orientation.

NOT INCLUDED: Meals ($600-1,000), airfare (approx. $1,200), housing ($1,000) expenses for passport ($135), trip cancellation and interruption insurance, tips for drivers and guides, baggage fees for domestic flight, and personal expenses.

Tentative Itinerary

  • 6/17 - Arrive in Paris
  • 6/18-23- Writing workshops with faculty mentors, craft seminars with local writers, readings
  • 6/24-25 - Free weekend for individual sightseeing
  • 6/26-30 - Writing workshops with faculty mentors, craft seminars with local writers, readings
  • 7/1 - Depart Paris 

Deadlines and Payments

November 1 - $500 Non-refundable deposit due**
December 1 - Remaining balance charged to AU account 

How to Apply

Writers who are not currently enrolled at Ashland University (including alumni) must first apply to the MFA program as a non-degree-seeking student. Alumni need not submit a writing sample or letters of recommendation. The $30 application fees will be waived for alumni and non-degree-seeking students.

All students need to:

  1. Create an account on Abroad Office
  2. On the left, choose 2017 AU Programs, then MFA in Paris page. Click Apply to Program and complete application information.
  3. Submit deposit to the Global Education Office - 100 Founders Hall, 401 College Avenue, Ashland, OH 44805 - prior to the deadline.


Cassandra Brown, Administrative Director
103 CFHB, 419.289.5098

Global Education Office
100 Founders, 419.289.5870

  *Price may decrease depending on number of participants.

**Exception: If the trip is canceled due to inadequate enrollment, deposits will be refunded.