MFA Student Profiles

Class 2021

mpe333's picture makalani bandele is an Affrilachian Poets and Cave Canem fellow. He has also received fellowships from the Kentucky Arts Council, Millay Colony, and Vermont Studio Center. His work has been published in several anthologies, Red Holler: Contemporary Appalachian Literature and Anthology of Appalachian Writers, to name a couple. Most recently work from an unpublished manuscript, under the aegis of a winged mind, appears or is forthcoming in Prairie Schooner, Foundry, 32poems, and North American Review. hellfightin’ is bandele's  only full-length collection of poems. 
Gavin Colton is a fiction writer from Leixlip, Ireland. He earned his B.A. in Journalism from Northern Kentucky University, and his M.A. in English Literature from Kansas State University. He’s currently working on a collection of stories about Irish people at home and abroad, as well as a novella set in the familiar town of Ballyfermot
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Titus Chalk is a British writer, former journalist, and recovering misanthrope. He is the author of Generation Decks: The Unofficial History of Gaming Phenomenon Magic: The Gathering (Solaris, 2017). 

ejmc242's picture Emily Jean McCollister Goldsmith is a poet from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. She received her BA in English with a concentration in Creative Writing from Louisiana State University. Her work has appeared in The Birds We Piled Loosely, YesPoetry, LSU's Delta Journal, and Witch Craft Magazine. 
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Jordan Honeyblue is a poetess from Baltimore, Maryland. In 2018, she received her B.A. from Morgan State University. Her favorite pastimes include visiting art museums, running her own online art publication to shed light on up & coming artists, and being around her family (especially her nephews).
sji234's picture Sarah Jiang loves art as equally as she loves science. She graduated from the University of Tennessee with a Ph.D. in Microbiology. To fulfill her interest in art, she is now here pursuing her MFA in creative writing in fiction. 
cke262's picture Chantel Kelly graduated Magna Cum Laude from Georgia State University with a BA in English and a minor in Psychology. She focuses her writing around issues like anxiety, depression, and the challenges faced by minority populations. Before coming to the University of Kentucky, she was a writer for Society 19 magnazine. When not writing fiction, she enjoys spending her time painting and catching up on her favorite Netflix shows. 
geol224's picture Born and raised in Montgomery County, MD, Gabrielle Oliver is a graduate of Howard University with a BA in English and a Minor in Japanese Language; she also holds a diploma in Japanese Language and Culture from Kansai Gaidai University in Osaka, Japan. A self-proclaimed linguist, Oliver is most proficient in Japanese – with experience translating for the State Department, the Embassy of Japan, the National Cherry Blossom Festival, the Japan-America Society of Washington, DC, and for multiple DC-based newspapers – but has also studied American Sign Language (ASL), German, Dutch, Italian, and French. She is the Japan-America Society of Washington, DC’s 2018-2019 Tanaka Green Scholarship recipient for her studies at Kansai Gaidai University in Osaka, as well as for her diachronic research on the aboriginal Ainu language of Japan. In the summer of 2019, she completed a writing fellowship with 7x NAACP Image Award-winning poet Nikki Giovanni on behalf of the Furious Flower Poetry Center.
ejsi226's picture Erika J. Simpson is a southern gal from Atlanta who's migrated around the U.S. She studied creative writing and theatre at DePaul University in Chicago before moving to San Francisco with her partner and three black cats. Now she's come to the University of Kentucky to invest further in her passion! She’d love to dabble in experimental nonfiction, but her heart lies in fiction, comedy, and television. She enjoys (writing about) time-traveling.


Class of 2020

Ash Baker recieved their Bachelor's in English and Cinema Studies from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. Ash is an MFA Candidate in Fiction, focusing on short stories.

Leigh Glanzman lives in Lexington, KY with too many books, never enough coffee, and one ornery old cat named Ella. She's lived and worked all around the US, most recently in Phoenix, and she is grateful on a daily basis to be back in the land of sweet tea and seasons. She has a BA in English from Southern New Hampshire University. Her poetry investigates the relationship between sound and sense, between speculation and science, between the precision of morphological meaning and the mystery and music of language. Her work has appeared in Iodine Poetry, Innisfree, and Kakalak: An Anthology of Carolina Poets.
John Larson is a fiction writer from Tinley Park, Illinois. He received a BA in English from the University of Kentucky in 2018.
Michael McEwen grew up in Garrett County, Maryland and reveived his B.S. in English Literature at Towson University. He has worked in undergraduate classrooms as a Writing Fellow and Tutor. 
Kaylen McKee Rose Nique is a poet and meditation teacher. Her work focuses on the body, art, interpersonal culture, and spiritual practice as pathways to resilience in the face of tragedy, trauma, and illness. She holds a BA in Visual Arts from Rice University (2007) and an MA in Engaged Humanities & the Creative Life from the Pacifica Graduate Institute (2014). She very happily serves as the web and art editor for New Limestone Review, the University of Kentucky MFA literary magazine.
Raquel Olive grew up in Carbondale, IL where she later received her BA in English at Southern Illinois University, Carbondale. She has spent most summers and holidays with her family in Caracas, Venezuela and her fiction encompasses social issues and matters of identity in both the rural Midwest and South America. 
Zeke Perkins is a writer from Upper Marlboro, Maryland. He has spent most of his working life fighting for social justice as part of the labor movement in Upstate New York, New York City and Los Angeles. He has traveled to Latin America, sat under waterfalls in Big Sur, and slacked off in Brooklyn. His fiction, essays and interviews have appeared in HobartPulp, Entropy, Queen Mobs Tea House, and Lab Letter. He has a bachelor degree from Bard College.
Dane Ritter was born and raised in Lexington, Kentucky. He obtained a Bachelor's in English from his alma mater, Transylvania University. He currently lives with his golden retriever, Forrest, and studies identity in regards to enviornmental decay. He implores all to discover easy ways to save the environment here:
hhsm222's picture Hagan Smith is from Breathitt County, Kentucky.
Peter Williams holds a master's degree in English Literature from Kansas State University. His English areas of interest are cultural studies, the contemporary novel, and British and American satire. He mostly write stories about the people of Kansas and Missouri. 


Class of 2019

Laurie Clewett, Angel C. Dye, Jeremy Flick, Suzanne Fernandez Gray, Tiara Brown, Isabelle Johnson, Omaria Sanchez Pratt, Taylor Sarratt 


Class of 2018

Evan Arneson, Austin Baurichter, Austyn Gaffney, Dorian Hairston, Parker Hobson, Jordan Hubrich, Rachel Kersey, Max LeNeave, Neleigh Olson, Krystin Santos, Kate Tighe-Pigott, Sophie Weiner


Class of 2017

Bernard Clay, Chad Gilpin, Amanda Kelley. Gary Smith, Ashlie Stevens


Class of 2016

Sarah Abbott, Joy Bowman, Catherine Brereton, Sean L Corbin, John Duncan, Megan D. Henson, Benjamin Honea, Jesse Houk, Sean Madden, Robin Rahija, Jordyn Rhorer, Erin Shoot


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