Writing

Spalding University school of writing renamed in honor of its founders – The Lane Report

Summary

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Twenty years ago, Sena Jeter Naslund and Karen Mann founded Kentucky’s first Master of Fine Arts in Writing program at Spalding University. Now, as part of a $1 million gift from a Spalding MFA alumna, the university’s graduate school of writing is being renamed in their honor as the Sena Jeter Naslund-Karen Mann Graduate School of Writing.

The $1 million gift from Spalding MFA fiction graduate Cindy Brady (Class of 2013) is one of the largest from a…….

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Twenty years ago, Sena Jeter Naslund and Karen Mann founded Kentucky’s first Master of Fine Arts in Writing program at Spalding University. Now, as part of a $1 million gift from a Spalding MFA alumna, the university’s graduate school of writing is being renamed in their honor as the Sena Jeter Naslund-Karen Mann Graduate School of Writing.

The $1 million gift from Spalding MFA fiction graduate Cindy Brady (Class of 2013) is one of the largest from an individual donor in Spalding University’s history. It will honor Naslund and Mann and support Spalding’s graduate writing programs, including the low-residency MFA, which is nationally recognized as a top-tier program and is noted for its emphasis on cross-genre study and interrelatedness-of-the-arts exploration.

Current School of Writing Chair Kathleen Driskell said, “We are wowed by Cindy Brady’s gift, which recognizes the importance of our creative community. We’re especially delighted Cindy Brady’s gift honors the innovative vision of our founders and will allow us to continue providing expert instruction, support, and flexibility to our graduate creative writing students.”

Notable graduates of the MFA program include Spalding President Tori Murden McClure (MFA ’05), whose creative thesis was her then-unpublished memoir, A Pearl in the Storm, later released by HarperCollins in 2009.

“Spalding University is deeply grateful to alumna Cindy Brady for her generous gift honoring the two women who pioneered Kentucky’s first MFA in Writing program,” McClure said. “As one of the program’s early students, I know first-hand the remarkable education it offers. Twenty years ago, Sena and Karen worked with Spalding to meet the needs of the times by providing an innovative creative writing education, delivered in an accessible low-residency format. Today, Cindy Brady meets the needs of the times in ensuring that Spalding’s graduate school of writing will endure, forever honoring its two visionary founders.”

Brady, who lives in Charleston, South Carolina, remains actively involved with the MFA program and has traveled abroad with the program as an alumna.

“The celebration of Spalding University’s Sena Jeter Naslund-Karen Mann Graduate School of Writing begins with the cooperation and imaginations of two women,” Brady said. “We honor the vision and life’s work of these women and make enduring the partnership between Spalding University and the Sena Jeter Naslund-Karen Mann Graduate School of Writing.”

Brady has long been a supporter of women’s excellence. Now retired from a career as a tennis professional, she coached elite women players in professional tennis. She previously established a scholarship at Spalding for female MFA students writing long-form fiction.

Her gift honors Naslund, bestselling author of Ahab’s Wife and other novels, who served as the MFA’s program director until her retirement in 2017.

“I’d simply like to thank Cindy Brady for her generosity and her high opinion of the Spalding MFA in Writing program that Karen Mann and I and all our mentors and …….

Source: https://www.lanereport.com/149461/2021/11/spalding-university-school-of-writing-renamed-in-honor-of-its-founders/