Scholarships & Fellowships

Financial Aid is available for graduate students. Please call 270-809-2546 for more information. See general information on financial aid and scholarships at Murray State University.

Graduate Fellowship Opportunities:

Jesse Stuart Fellowship

For seven years running, the Jesse Stuart Fellowship has been awarded to students in the Murray State MFA program.

Jesse Stuart FellowshipMary Lucille Hays is the winner of the 2015-16 Jesse Stuart Fellowship Award. A senior instructor in the English Department at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, she is a published writer of short stories, poetry, and a weekly newspaper column, "Letter From Birdland." This marks the seventh year running that one of our MFA students takes home the Stuart Fellowship, which comes with an award of $7,000.

Past Fellows:

  • 2014–15 Erica L. Punke
  • 2013–14 Andrea Stang
  • 2012–13 Ford Ebling
  • 2011–12 Jonathan Ashley
  • 2010–11 Jacqueline Kohl Hamilton
  • 2009–10 Jeremy Byars

Hogan Scholarships

The MFA Program of Murray State University is pleased to announce the following scholarships, made possible by a generous gift from Murray State alumnus William “Bill” Hogan (’70) and his wife Janis.

  • Three scholarships, each in the amount of $2,500, will be awarded.
  • New students incoming to the July 2015 MFA Program residency are eligible to apply.
  • The sole criterion for the scholarships is the literary merit of the student’s writing sample included in his/her application.
  • Ideally, one scholarship will be awarded to an incoming student in each genre (Fiction, Creative Nonfiction, and Poetry); however, if no application in a particular genre is deemed worthy by the selection committee of an award, two or more scholarships may be awarded in a single genre.
  • The MFA Program reserves the right to withhold the selection of recipients if no worthy applications are received. Should this case occur, the program will hold the funds until the following application cycle and/or a new pool of applicants.
  • Two or three alternates will be selected to receive the award in the event that one of the students who is selected declines the scholarship. These alternates will be ranked according to literary merit.
  • The selection committee will be comprised of three or more MFA faculty.
  • The process of selection for the scholarships will run concurrently with the standard review process, with the standard application deadline of April 1, 2015, and the scholarship selection made no later than May 1, 2015.
  • Scholarship awards will be announced on May 1, and the students selected will be contacted by email and phone.
  • Candidates will be asked to respond by May 10th and will forfeit the award if they don't meet that deadline. They will not, however, also forfeit their admittance to the program.
  • In the event that a candidate fails to respond by the deadline or declines the scholarship, the first alternate will be offered the scholarship.

Hogan Scholars 2015-16 Hogan Scholars Alexis Alexander, Matthew Quinn, Deena Lilygren

For more information about scholarships, contact MFA Program Director Carrie Jerrell at 270-809-4723 or email