Creative Writing at Lakeland University

Earn Your Creative Writing Degree at Lakeland University

The BFA in Creative Writing is unlike any other writing degree offered in Wisconsin. A rigorous and focused curriculum for arts-minded students, this degree prepares students for a variety of careers, including creative writing, editing and publishing.

Required Cooperative Education experiences and internships pair students with national literary journals, a national book press Seems, the Great Lakes Writers Festival, the Community Book Read, and the campus’ digital media outlet, The Mirror.

100% Placement Rate

Unlike any writing degree offered in Wisconsin


Interested in a Creative Writing degree from Lakeland University? Contact us today!
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Creative Writing at Lakeland University

BFA in Creative Writing

At Lakeland, students take three tiers of creative writing workshops in three genres, as well as courses in our other fine arts programs – Music, Art, and Theater – in order to magnify study, extend practice and enrich experience.

Lakeland’s experienced Writing faculty takes great pride in working one-on-one with all students. While the primary instructors are well-versed in all facets of the written word, Madeleine Wattenberg is an award-winning poet who has published dozens of works and done numerous readings. Her debut poetry collection, I/O, was a finalist for the 2021 Miller Williams Poetry Prize, and Jodie Mortag, an expert in fiction and nonfiction, has work in numerous literary magazines--Ruminate, North Dakota Quarterly, Counterclock, Fourteen Hills, Barnstorm, Stoneboat, among others.

Lakeland University also offers a major in Professional Writing, which has been a staple at our campus for more than three decades!

100% Placement Rate

In the last decade, Lakeland's Creative Writing program has had 100 percent job placement for students who pursued this degree. Many received highly coveted teaching assistantships and tuition remission upon acceptance.

What Makes Our Program Unique?

  • Wisconsin's only BFA program offering a completely creative-writing-focused major
  • Opportunity to learn from over 14 published authors
  • Development of craft in all genres: poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and screenwriting
  • Creative writing workshops that build from beginner to advanced levels
  • Special topics in writing such as plot, children's literature, travel writing, social change, prose poetry, myths and fairy tales
  • Composition of a book written, revised, edited, designed, and printed by student
  • Exploration of other artforms as inspiration--graphic design, music, studio art, and theater
  • Participation in the student-led creative writing club

Students who have successfully completed a B.F.A. in Creative Writing from Lakeland University will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of key terms, histories, forms, and structures from a variety of fields within the fine arts.
  • Present work clearly and professionally when writing within different genres.
  • Master the conventions of Standard English.
  • Use artistic conventions in creative and unique ways.
  • Work both independently and within a community of writers.
  • Demonstrate work habits necessary for successful careers within the writing profession.
  • Apply knowledge and skills gained in the classroom to real-world settings (e.g., internships, The Mirror, Seems, etc.).


What are some careers available to me?
Copywriter & Editor
Writing Festival Coordinator

First Time Freshman

  • Step 1: Complete an application online.
  • Step 2: Submit official high school transcripts directly to Lakeland University.

Transfer Students

  • Step 1: Complete an application online.
  • Step 2: Request official transcripts from all institutions of higher education attended to be sent directly to Lakeland University.
    • Students who have NOT completed 12 transferrable credits MUST submit official high school transcripts.

Apply Now

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Admission Requirements

Once your application is received, your Lakeland University admissions counselor will be in touch.

  • Lakeland University accepts a high school diploma with a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or above or the equivalent of a high school diploma.
  • Lakeland University accepts transfer students who have earned at least a 2.0 cumulative GPA and are in good standing at other accredited institutions of higher learning.
  • We review each application on an individual basis.

*Exceptions to the above admission criteria may be granted for students with a cumulative GPA range from 1.75 to 1.99 if the academic experience that resulted in the less than 2.0 GPA was more than two years ago. Furthermore, typically students with a cumulative GPA range from 1.50 to 1.75 will only be considered if the poor academic performance experience that resulted in the less than 2.0 GPA was more than five years ago. Students receiving an exception will be admitted conditionally.

Meet Our Creative Writing Faculty

Academic Affairs |
Main Campus (Traditional) |
Jodie Mortag, M.F.A.

Jodie Mortag, M.F.A.

Associate Professor of Writing

Main Campus (Traditional) |
Madeleine Wattenberg, Ph.D.

Madeleine Wattenberg, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Writing

Contact us to learn more about the Creative Writing degree at Lakeland University.

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