University of Minnesota-Twin Cities

Posted on April 7, 2013

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This is not to be confused with the University of Minnesota-Duluth because they also have a graduate program for an M.A. in English. I will research them later in this project. This was originally the first choice on my list for graduate schools but I want to see how this changes with my research. Click here for the home page of the U of MN.

The U of M-Twin Cities campus sprawls between St. Paul and Minneapolis, the English Department’s building being located in Minneapolis. With a student body of 51,853 in 2012–2013, the University is pretty sizable. The Minneapolis campus is located near Interstates 94 and 35W and is bordered by the Minneapolis neighborhoods of Dinkytown (on the north), Cedar-Riverside (on the west), Stadium Village (on the southeast), and Prospect Park (on the east). This is considered an urban campus and there is plenty of options when it comes to what to do in the Twin Cities. There are plenty of parks, restaurants, shopping centers, theaters, and museums within both walking and driving distance.

My research on the U of MN had more articles and statistics than my research on Bemidji State University so that cheered me up immensely. I found a similar statistics page specific to the graduate school with some pretty interesting numbers (like a 17% acceptance rate; yikes!) This page is a similar statistics page, also giving estimated tuition costs and desired placement of GRE scores. The U of M even had a Prospective Student Visit which was is March 14 – 15 and offered interested students a chance to come to their campus and talk with graduate students and faculty. I included a PDF of those events here. An event like that can be really helpful for undecided students like myself to come see what the school environment is like, along with becoming acquainted with the student body. I have already emailed the director of graduate studies to see if another event like that will be held in either Fall 2013 or Spring 2014.

Another thing that I found really interesting is that the U of MN Twin Cities has a Yelp page! I really enjoy yelp as a website for finding new restaurants and bars to try but I have yet to use it for schools. But the information for the schools is just as helpful as the information for restaurants. Some of the reviews on yelp were generalized to the University as a school, while some were more specific to the graduate programs. The overall score of the U of MN on Yelp was 4.5 out of 5 stars. Now onto the meat and potatoes.

Rank; The University of Minnesota ranks #36 on U.S. News Best Graduate Schools in English. Considering that this ranking system goes all the way to 134, this is actually a pretty high rank for the U of M.

Requirements: Here is the specific link for application requirements for their English graduate program. The U of M is more explicit in what they want and expect from their prospective students than Bemidji State is. They do require that their candidates take the GRE, and they have a preferred English undergraduate GPA of 3.5. They also make note that they only accept graduate students for the fall semester.

Funding:  It took me a bit of navigation on the U of M’s website to find their actual funding page for graduates. Their page is similar to Bemidji State’s, along with the choices for funding they present; assistantships, fellowships, and loans. They also link to a list of graduate eligible scholarships in their other funding section. The U of M English Department also has its own funding page for English graduate students. The discouraging point is that many of these fellowships and assistantships are specifically for the PhD and the M.F.A. students. However some of the assistantships are still offered to M.A. students.

I am not sure personally how I feel with what the U of M has to offer. The acceptance percentage of 17% is daunting. But the U of M does have a fairly high rank and is considered one of the best schools in Minnesota.  I am disappointed that there is not more funding for the University’s M.A. students but I am also not particularly surprised because of the emphasis put on the M.F.A. and PhD programs. My research has left me with a lot to consider when it comes to the U of M. But what’s the next school on the list? St. Cloud State University.  Not as well known as the U of M but still a M.A. program on my radar.

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