ALERT:  Information about COVID-19: Please view our latest updates and FAQ by clicking this link.

Maine College of Art welcomes applications from international students. Due to the time involved in fulfilling legal requirements, it is recommended that international applicants submit all application materials six months prior to the start of the semester.

International MFA Application Requirements

We are currently accepting applications for entry in Summer 2020. The deadlines are as follows:

Rolling admissions: through May 1, 2020 as space permits

All incoming MFA students must start in June with the summer intensive. We do not offer Fall or Spring admission.

*The Full Tuition Application deadline has passed for MFA Fall of 2020.

To apply for admissions as a full-time Master of Fine Arts degree student, the following items must be submitted:

☐ Completed Application Form

Please click on the following links to create or to log in to your account:

☐ Application Fee

The application fee is $70 for international applicants.

Application fees are payable by credit card on the application or by mailing in a check. They are are non-refundable and must be sent in US currency.

If you are mailing a check, please make it out to Maine College of Art. Be sure to clearly write your name, the program, year and semester you are applying for (i.e. MFA Fall 2019) in the memo line, and send to:
Maine College of Art
Attn: International Graduate Admissions
522 Congress Street
Portland, Maine 04101

☐ Letter of Intent

Please submit a letter of intent of approximately 750 words that describes your intended field of exploration. The letter of intent should include an analysis of the applicant’s current work and goals for graduate study. Goals should include a discussion of the work related to material, cultural, and critical contexts.

☐ Curriculum Vitae

Your full curriculum vitae should include education, employment history, exhibitions/publications, and honors. Please upload a PDF version of your CV to the online application.

☐ Two Letters of Recommendation

Recommendation letters should come from professional and/or educational references who can speak from direct experience about your potential to thrive within a rigorous, cross-disciplinary graduate environment. Letters should address your ability to work independently, to contribute to an intensive learning community, as well as your artistic promise. Recommenders have the option of uploading their letter with your application or mailing the letter directly to our Admissions office. Please follow the instructions on the online application for upload instructions.

Mailed recommendations should arrive in an sealed envelope with the recommender’s signature over the seal. They can be mailed to:

Maine College of Art
Attn: Graduate Admissions
522 Congress Street
Portland, ME 04101

☐ Official College Transcripts

We require official transcripts from all previously attended undergraduate and graduate institutions. 3.0 minimum GPA is required. Transcripts will be considered official if they arrive to MECA in an envelope that is stamped and sealed by the issuing institution. Applicants may also hand-deliver transcripts as long as they are in an unopened envelope stamped and sealed by the issuing institution.

Applicants who attended postsecondary institutions outside of the United States are required to have their transcript(s) evaluated by World Education Services (WES), Educational Credential Evaluators (ECE) or by another member of the National Association of Credit Evaluation Services (NACES). Please note: if transfer credit is being sought, applicants must request a “course by course” credential evaluation report through World Education Services.

All documents must be in English, therefore official translations are required.

We will also accept official transcripts sent by the issuing institution through Parchment or the National Student Clearinghouse Transcript Service.

Official transcripts can be mailed to:
Maine College of Art
Attn: Graduate Admissions
522 Congress Street
Portland, ME 04101

Please note: in order to be award federal/state financial aid, we require transcripts from all colleges and universities attended, even if credit was not earned.

☐ Digital Portfolio

Your portfolio should be submitted for review online at

Please submit 15 to 20 digital images of work, or up to 10 minutes of video.

☐ Demonstration of English Proficiency

If your primary language is not English, you will be required to demonstrate proficiency in written and spoken English. The following are acceptable forms of documentation:

  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL): official score reports must be dated within two years of intended start date at MECA.
  • Written TOEFL Test: minimum test score of 550.
  • Internet TOEFL Test: minimum test score of 79.
  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS): official score reports must be dated within two years of intended start date at MECA, minimum score of 6.5.
  • Graduation from a US high school with at least 2 years of high school English, not in conjunction with English as a Second Language (ESL), and documentation of a B average or higher.
  • Completion of 2 consecutive semesters of English Composition taken at a regionally accredited US college while carrying a full-time course load and not in conjunction with ESL. A minimum grade of B is required in each semester.
  • Completion of the equivalent of 2 years at an English speaking higher education institution and a minimum 3.0 GPA.

Documentation can be sent to:
Maine College of Art
Attn: International Graduate Admissions
522 Congress Street
Portland, Maine 04101

Additional Application Notes

+ Candidates may be interviewed via Skype by the Admissions Committee. Finalists may be required to make a presentation of their work to the Committee or submit additional written work as requested.

+ Accepted international students must complete and submit the Declaration of Finances (DOF) form to the Admissions office.

How to get an I-20 Form for MFA

You will need an I-20 Form to apply for a student visa through a US Consulate or Embassy. Once you have been accepted for admission and submitted a $300 enrollment deposit, MECA will issue you an I-20 Form. You will need to submit the following documents to the Office of Admissions in order to receive your I-20:

  • Declaration of Finances (DOF) form.
  • For your DOF to be processed we will need a scanned copy of your passport in color. You can send this with your completed DOF mail or send a digital copy.
  • The United States Citizen and Immigration Service requires that international applicants submit to MECA a declaration of finances (DOF) indicating that the applicant has financial resources adequate to provide for his or her expenses without resorting to unauthorized employment. The amount declared must reflect the total sum of tuition, fees and living expenses for one academic year of study and must be dated within one year of initial enrollment at MECA.
  • DOF Form (will be provided upon acceptance)
  • Verification of Finances (VOF)

All funds declared on the DOF must be substantiated by a verification of finances (VOF) from the student’s bank or sponsor’s bank.  All documents must be in English and in U.S. dollars, or the bank must supply the current exchange rate. Official and original documentation must be provided.  All supporting documentation must be dated within one year of initial enrollment at Maine College of Art.

Please note: It can take up to six weeks for an I-20 Form to be processed and delivered to most countries.  You are encouraged to submit this documentation as soon as possible, especially if mail delivery may be slow from the US to your country.


Have questions?

Contact the International Student Counselor:
Emily Brighi
Phone: 1.207.669.5028
Cell+Text: 1.207.318.4071


Featured image: Inass Yassin MFA ’19