Wednesday, August 1, 2012

At last, a clever way to close down the MFA mill?

Is this what most MFA programs amount to?
I've rarely been a fan of the HowlRound site, but they have posted an intriguing article by Marshall Botnivick which includes a very clever suggestion as to how to close down, or at least limit the size of, the current MFA mill: tie the size of college arts programs to the professional success of their graduates.

As I understand Botnivick, the idea is that the loaned portion of a student's tuition should not be paid upfront, but rather collected as an annual tithe over the first ten years or so of a graduate's professional career.  If a graduate can't find work in the field in which he or she paid to be trained, they are allowed to default on their loan - hence if a school doesn't produce working artists, it won't collect its tuition.

Hmmmm.  How many MFA programs - or tenured professors - would dare to take that challenge?  I wonder!

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