Fordham University, Rose Hill
New York City
June 19 – 23, 2019

Application Period: December 1st – January 15th
This project is made possible by lead funding from Fordham College at Rose Hill, New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, The New York State Council on the Arts, The National Endowment for the Arts, and Amazon Literary Partnership.

Li-Young Lee at the Kundiman Retreat


In order to help mentor the next generation of Asian American writers, Kundiman sponsors an annual Retreat in partnership with Fordham University. During each Retreat, six nationally renowned Asian American poets and fiction writers conduct Master Classes and manuscript consultations for 36 fellows. Readings, writing circles, and informal social gatherings are also scheduled. Through this Retreat, Kundiman hopes to provide a safe and instructive environment that identifies and addresses the unique challenges faced by emerging Asian American writers. This five-day Retreat takes place from Wednesday to Sunday. Master Classes will not exceed six students.



A nationally renowned Asian American writer facilitates each Master Class. Fellows are assigned a home group for the duration of the retreat, and the faculty rotates in the workshopping of each home group. The Kundiman Retreat is generative in nature and so Master Classes are focused on new work that is written at the Retreat. Master Classes include a craft talk, readings and prompts / exercises to generate this new work. Poetry fellows will receive a manuscript consultation on a 10 page manuscript. Fiction fellows will receive a manuscript consultation on a 15 page manuscript. Our hope is that fellows are able to forge a deeper relationship to their artistic process and are able to encounter their work with renewed focus and energy.  



The Kundiman Retreat is held at Fordham University's beautiful Rose Hill Campus located in the Bronx, NYC.

If you have any questions about accessibility or if you need any accommodations, please email


The Retreat is open to anyone who self-identifies as Asian American. 



The non-refundable tuition fee is $375. Thanks to the Fordham College at Rose Hill, room and board are provided free to accepted fellows. The full cost for a fellow to attend a Retreat is $1500. We thank our generous donors for making the reduced rate possible in order to nurture the next generation of Asian American writers.

The application fee is $25.



To learn about Retreat logistics, please visit:



Between December 1st and January 15th, apply to the Kundiman Retreat by clicking on one of the below buttons. Submit a cover letter and brief writing sample 5–7 pages of poetry or 5 pages of prose (1250 words max)]. Notification on application status will be given by February 28th.  



Due to the generosity of individuals, social justice organizations, and community giving circles, Kundiman is able to offer needs-based tuition scholarships for our summer retreat. See below for more information about the scholarship eligibility requirements. Scholarships are awarded after fellows have been selected and notified; there is not a separate application process. If you are interested in donating a tuition scholarship, please contact Kundiman’s Development Manager Dan Lau at

Dark Noise Scholarship

  • Thanks to the generosity of the Dark Noise Collective, Kundiman is able to provide a tuition scholarship for one fellow as well as a $200 travel stipend.

PAWA Manuel G. Flores Prize

  • PAWA's Manuel G. Flores Prize Fund continues to provide annual scholarships to two Filipino American Kundiman fellows to attend the retreat. For more information about Manuel G. Flores click here.

Queer Scholarship Fund

  • In an effort to support LGBTQIA+ Asian American writers, Kundiman is able to provide two tuition scholarships for two fellows to attend the Annual Summer Retreat.

Frequently Asked questions

Q: Can I apply in both genres?
A: Yes, you may apply in both poetry and fiction, but should submit a separate application with a separate application fee for each genre.

Q: I am a current Kundiman fellow/alum. Can I return to Kundiman, but study under a different genre than the one I was accepted into?
A: In order to study in a different genre, returning fellows will need to submit an application in the other genre.

Q: I'm a creative nonfiction writer. Can I apply to the retreat?
A: Unfortunately, at the moment, Kundiman only has the capacity to offer spaces at the retreat for those poetry and fiction writers.

Q: Can I receive feedback on my application?
A: Unfortunately, because Kundiman is a small nonprofit with a limited staff, we are unable to provide feedback on individual applications.

Q: Can I submit an excerpt of a longer piece of writing?
A: Absolutely!  You can include a cover page that notes that your submission is an excerpt.

Q: Can I apply if I live outside of the U.S.?
A: We welcome everyone who self-identifies as Asian American to apply.  

Other questions? E-mail:

2019 Poetry Faculty


Jennifer Tseng is the author of three award-winning poetry collections; a collection of flash fiction, The Passion of Woo & Isolde, a Firecracker Award finalist and winner of an Eric Hoffer Book Award; and a novel, Mayumi & the Sea of Happiness, finalist for the PEN American Center's Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction and the New England Book Award. She is a Visiting Core Faculty member of OSU-Cascades' Low Residency MFA program and teaches for the Fine Arts Work Center's online writing program, 24PearlSt.


Myung Mi Kim was born in Seoul, Korea. She immigrated with her family to the United States at the age of nine. Her collection of poems Under Flag, won the Multicultural Publishers Exchange Award of Merit; other collections include The Bounty, DURA, Commons, River Antes, and Penury.  Myung Mi Kim is the subject of the book The Subject of Building Is a Process / Light Is an Element: essays and excursions for Myung Mi Kim. She is the James H. McNulty Chair of English at SUNY Buffalo.

Craig-Santos-Perez (1).jpg

Craig Santos Perez is a native Chamorro from the Pacific Island of Guåhan (Guam). He is the author of four collections of poetry and two spoken word albums, the editor of three anthologies, and the co-founder of Ala Press (the only publisher in the U.S. dedicated to Pacific Islander poetry). For his writing and scholarship, he has received a PEN Center USA/Poetry Society of America Literary Prize, American Book Award, Lannan Foundation Literary Fellowship, Ford Foundation Fellowship, and Hawaiʻi Literary Arts Council Award. In 2017, he was chosen by NBC Asian America as an important voice of the Asian American and Pacific Islander community. Craig earned an MFA from the University of San Francisco and a Ph.D. in Comparative Ethnic Studies from the University of California, Berkeley. Currently, he works as an Associate Professor in the English Department at the University of Hawaiʻi, Mānoa, where he received a Chancellors’ Citation for Meritorious Teaching. His undergraduate and graduate courses focus on environmental poetry, food writing, and Pacific literature.

2019 Fiction Faculty


Tania James is the author of the novel Atlas of Unknowns, the short story collection Aerogrammes, and the novel The Tusk That Did the Damage, all published by Knopf. Atlas was a New York Times Editor’s Choice, an Indie Next Notable, a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers selection, and a Best Book of 2009 for The San Francisco Chronicle and NPR. Aerogrammes was a Best Book of 2012 for Kirkus Reviews, Library Journal, and The San Francisco Chronicle. Her stories have appeared in Boston Review, Granta, Kenyon Review, One Story, and A Public Space. Two stories from Aerogrammes were finalists for Best American Short Stories 2008 and 2013. The Tusk That Did the Damage was named a Best Book of 2015 by The San Francisco Chronicle and NPR, and was a New York Times Editor’s Choice. In 2016, Tusk was shortlisted for the International Dylan Thomas Prize and longlisted for the Financial Times/Oppenheimer Award. Tania has been a fellow of Ragdale, Macdowell, the Sustainable Arts Foundation, and the Fulbright Program. She teaches in the MFA program at George Mason University and lives in Washington, D.C.


Padma Viswanathan’s debut novel, The Toss of a Lemon, was published in eight countries, a bestseller in three, and a finalist for the Commonwealth (Regional) First Book Prize, the First Novel Prize and the Pen Center USA Fiction Prize. Her second novel, The Ever After of Ashwin Rao, has been published in Canada, the USA, India and Australia. In Canada, it was shortlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize and was a national bestseller. Padma’s short fiction appears in various journals, including the story “Better Protect America” in Granta and “Transitory Cities,” winner of 2006 Boston ReviewShort Story Contest. Her plays include House of Sacred Cows and Disco Does Not Suck. An Associate Professor in fiction-writing and literature in the Programs in Creative Writing and Translation at the University of Arkansas, in Fayetteville, Padma has served on juries for literary awards in Canada and the US, including the Governor General’s Award in fiction, the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Neustadt Prize, and others. Canadian by birth and temperament, she now lives on a hilltop in Arkansas with her husband (the poet and translator Geoffrey Brock), children, parents and an ever-shifting array of animals.


Shawn Wong is the author of two novels, Homebase and American Knees and editor and co-editor of six anthologies of Asian American or American multicultural literature, including the landmark anthology, Aiiieeeee! An Anthology of Asian American Writers. Americanese, the award-winning film version of American Knees was released in 2006 and directed by Eric Byler. He is completing a third novel, The Ancient and Occupied Heart of Greg Li, a novel about anonymity, gender, and the history of writing. Wong is Professor of English and Comparative Literature, Cinema & Media at the University of Washington where he teaches courses on Asian American literature, literature of social difference, and screenwriting. He is also one of the founding instructors of The Red Badge Project, a storytelling workshop for veterans across Washington State (