Alumni Testimonials

“The Cypress Dome Society has been an invaluable resource to me on my writing life journey. It helped me see the world of writing beyond the undergraduate degree and gave me the skills I needed to make writing and editing a part of my professional career.”
–Madison Bernath, UCF MFA student

“The Cypress Dome published my first poem, and in the next issue, another poem won first place in the annual contest. I still remember that flash of joy and astonishment, of unbelievable luck that others could value my work and publish it. I felt welcomed into the world of writing and writers in a very tangible way.”
Kelle Groom, author of three volumes of poetry — Five Kingdoms, Luckily, and Underwater City — and the memoir I Wore the Ocean in the Shape of a Girl, named a Library Journal Best Memoir of 2011, a New York Times Book Review Editor’s Choice, and a Barnes & Noble Great New Writers selection.

“My experiences as an editor of the Cypress Dome have been incredibly influential– not only in giving me the know-how to establish and advise a literary magazine for my students, but also in developing the interpersonal skills necessary to function in the professional world. Real world experiences like this are vital to a university cultivating well-rounded graduates.”
–Carly Gates, high school teacher, Palm Beach County, Florida

“The cypress dome was an awesome natural feature near UCF’s campus in the early 90s. It’s probably even more awesome now, but the Cypress Dome was an excellent chance to work with Don Stap and my fellow creative writers in the early 90s, too. Cypress Dome helped us highlight UCF’s writers’ natural talents, as I learned lay-out skills and as we showcased all the best that the campus’s creative chroniclers had to offer.”
–Adam Sonstegard, Associate Professor of English, Cleveland State University