As We See It

Write on! A $20 million donation bolsters the future of Black Mountain Institute


Long live the Black Mountain Institute! Thanks to a $20 million gift from the Rogers Foundation—one of the largest in UNLV’s history—the institute should be financially covered for the next 25 to 30 years, BMI executive director Carol Harter says. With the gift, which adds to a previous Rogers Foundation contribution of $10 million, the literary center will expand its master’s degree offerings from poetry and fiction to include creative nonfiction and dramatic writing for screen and stage. Harter says that of the top 50 literary centers, only six offer creative nonfiction. “It means we can move a whole level up,” she says. BMI seeks to promote discourse on current events, offering fellowships, grants and lecture series to that effect, as well as asylum for persecuted writers. Harter hopes BMI will eventually rival the prestigious Iowa Writers’ Workshop. “The city isn’t known for its intellectual capacity,” she says. “We’re trying to change that.”

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