Small class size
Before I get into the details, it's worth mentioning that I'm in my second year at this program and have really enjoyed my time here. I will be biased, like any FSU student would be. Getting an MFA is a big deal, I took out loans to be here. And I have not been let down, I actually think I was undersold this program. I happen to be a Florida state resident who attended film school in Chicago and New York before this. I'm really glad I didn't let my desire to return to a big city overshadow my needs from a master's program, because I would've lost out.
I'll go through my ratings.
Affordability: Like I said, I'm a Florida resident so this was obviously the most affordable option for me. However, it's still very affordable for out of state and international students. In the writing program, you get a graduate assistantship in your second year that drastically lowers the cost of tuition while giving you a stipend. Tallahassee is by far more affordable than NYC or LA.
Alumni Network: This was a huge selling point for me. I knew about the tightness of the FSU alumni but I personally haven't done much to get involved yet. They do a lot to help you connect with alumni. When you're here, you get to know the year above you, and then the year below you, and they become a big part of your network as well. Additionally, writers take an LA trip to pitch and meet with alumni and industry professionals. I'm taking my trip this summer so I can't speak on it yet. They also support students after graduation with finding work.
Campus: As writers, we have our own room in the building that is only accessible to us and faculty. Being such a small program, having a dedicated room to ourselves is really great. We don't have to search for a place to go write, and we don't have to worry about someone coming in and erasing our work on the boards. For FSU as a whole, it's a beautiful campus and it's clearly being taken care of.
Career Assistance: I spoke a little about this in alumni network. It's hard to say since I'm still a student. However, my coursework has been really helpful. From learning script coverage to a very intense and detailed TV writers room simulation class, I have learned so much that has prepared me for working in the industry.
Coursework: This is a conservatory style program. You're writing, a lot. And you're rewriting, a lot. We're constantly working on idea generation, pitching, and finding our voices. It's such thorough and purposeful work. I will be leaving here with at least four features, two and a half TV pilots, a spec script, and a short story I plan on expanding into a novel. I say at least because it's up to me if I want to do more. The professors here are incredibly supportive and personable. Their mentorship has been extraordinary. They pay a lot of attention to you, your work, your voice. They care about us personally, about us getting burned out, and help us build lasting writing habits.
Facilities & Equipment: This isn't really important to writers. We do have pretty nice chairs in the writers room. Five stars for that, and for having our own writers room.
Professors: I said a lot about this in the coursework category. They're very knowledgable and most are still working in the industry.
Scholarships: We have the graduate assistantship which has been phenomenal. Like I said before, it drastically lowers the price of tuition.
All in all, I love FSU. I highly recommend it. I've met lifelong collaborators here, written my best work, and grown so much not only as a writer but also in my ability to talk about myself and my work.
I'll edit this sometime after I graduate in August to give my review as an alumni
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