Summer Programs at Sewanee


Session I: June 22–28, 2014
Session II: July 6–12, 2014
The Sewanee Summer Seminar is now preparing for its 39th successful year hosting alumni, alumni relatives, and friends of the university, old and new, to a week long return to academic study in support of life long learning. In the morning each participant is actively engaged in learning, and in the afternoon is encouraged to sit back and relax, to get to know some interesting people, and to recharge their spirit on the Domain.

Five outstanding professors from our faculty give a major presentation in one of the early morning sessions, lead a follow up discussion after a short break, and on a second day, give a presentation on another topic in the second half of another morning session. The subject of the talks intentionally range broadly, usually with an eclectic mix of disciplines represented each summer.
Please visit our website at: for further details or write to Professor Dan Backlund, Director, Sewanee Summer Seminar, at Sewanee: The University of the South, 735 University Avenue, Sewanee, TN 37383-1000, email: or 931.598.0976.

June 22–July 21, 2014
The Sewanee Summer Music Festival is an orchestral and chamber music training program for young musicians ages 12 through graduate school. The SSMF hosts 200 students from over 25 states and a dozen countries, chosen by audition, each summer. Students undertake a rigorous schedule of orchestra rehearsals, private lessons, chamber music study, and other classes. The program offers close personal attention, with a dedicated faculty and low faculty-student ratio.

The festival presents over 25 performances open to the public. These include a concert series of chamber music performances by artist-faculty, weekly performances of both student orchestras, student chamber music performances, and festival orchestra concerts featuring both students and faculty. Information for both students and concert-goers can be found on our website, Contact us at, or 931.598.1225.

Workshops in Poetry, Fiction, and Playwriting
From July 22 through August 3, 2014, Sewanee: The University of the South will host the 25th session of the Sewanee Writers’ Conference. Supported by the Walter E. Dakin Memorial Fund established through the estate of the late Tennessee Williams, the conference will gather a distinguished faculty to provide instruction and criticism through workshops and craft lectures in poetry, fiction, and playwriting.

This year’s faculty includes fiction writers John Casey, Tony Earley, Adrianne Harun, Randall Kenan, Margot Livesey, Jill McCorkle, Alice McDermott, Christine Schutt, Allen Wier, and Steve Yarbrough; and poets Claudia Emerson, B. H. Fairchild, Debora Greger, William Logan, Maurice Manning, Charles Martin, Mary Jo Salter, and A. E. Stallings. Dan O’Brien will help lead the playwriting workshop.

In addition, a group of distinguished editors, critics, agents, and visitors will take part. Recent visitors include David Barber (The Atlantic); Georges, Anne, and Valerie Borchardt (Georges Borchardt Literary Agency); Michelle Brower (Folio Literary Management); Barbara Epler (New Directions); Leigh Feldman (Writers House); Gary Fisketjon (Alfred A. Knopf); Mary Flinn (Blackbird); Gary Garrison (The Dramatists Guild); Gail Hochman (Brandt & Hochman Literary Agency); Roger Hodge (The Oxford American); Rachel Hutt (New Dramatists); John Irwin (The Hopkins Review); Mike Levine (Northwestern University Press); David Lynn (The Kenyon Review); Speer Morgan (The Missouri Review); Emily Morse (New Dramatists); Kathy Pories (Algonquin Books); Elisabeth Schmitz (Grove/Atlantic); Don Share (Poetry); Elizabeth Spencer; Philip Terzian (The Weekly Standard); Liz Van Hoose; Sidney Wade; Amy Williams (McCormick & Williams); Robert Wilson (The American Scholar); and Renée Zuckerbrot (Renée Zuckerbrot Literary Agency).

Workshops form the core of the 12-day program and encourage participants to share and discuss their work and the craft of writing as a profession. Each participant also meets individually with a faculty member to discuss the participant’s manuscript. Scheduled events, meals, and receptions offer ample opportunity for conversation about the craft and life of writing.

Application and Admission
The conference accepts online applications January 15–April 15. Applicants are selected primarily on the strength of the original work submitted, and on the screening committee’s judgment that the applicant is likely to benefit from the conference.
For more information or to apply, please visit, or call 931.598.1654. The conference schedule will be posted online in July. Readings and lectures are held in the Bairnwick Women’s Center and are open to the public.

June 9–27, 2014
The Advanced Degrees Program offers two post-ordination graduate degree programs over the summer. The Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.) program stresses developing competence in the practice of ministry, and requires four summers of study and a project. In addition to the regular D.Min., there are now two specialist tracks offered within this degree: the D.Min. in Liturgy and the D.Min. in Preaching. The Masters of Sacred Theology (S.T.M.) is an academic research program that also requires four summers of study and a thesis. In addition to the regular S.T.M., the Masters of Sacred Theology in Anglican Studies (S.T.M./A.S.) track provides the opportunity to acquire fuller mastery in that field and is suitable for those previously ordained in another denomination who plan to be ordained in the Episcopal Church. Courses for the S.T.M. can also be taken during the school year.

Generous financial aid is available to advanced degree (summer term) students for tuition. The School of Theology also welcomes special students, who are not necessarily seeking a degree, to participate in the summer session.

The faculty is made up of members of The School of Theology and faculty members from other theological schools (recently from Oxford, Harvard, Duke, and Emory). Consequently, the summer program has a more ecumenical flavor than the regular term and provides an educational opportunity in an atmosphere of diversity and scholarly depth. A more detailed description of the program may be found on our website at:

June 8–July 18, 2014
The School of Letters is a summer program in Literature and Creative Writing, offering the M.A. and the M.F.A. degree and designed to provide a graduate program of the best quality to students who have only summers to devote to study. Students must apply for admission. The faculty consists of Sewanee professors, from English and allied departments, and distinguished professors from other campuses. Taking a typical load of two courses per summer, students can complete either degree in five years. M.F.A. students must complete eight courses, half of them writing workshops, earning a grade of “B” or better, and then write a thesis to earn a final two course credits. M.A. students must also complete at least eight courses, including at least two in English literature, at least two in American literature, and at least one in non-English literature in translation. These students may earn their final two credits either by writing a thesis or by taking additional courses. The program runs for six weeks each summer, from early June through mid-July. The website provides more information.