The Certificate Program

In response to COVID-19, we have made the decision not to run the 2020/2021 Certificate Program. Check back here for more information about when we’ll be opening applications for the 2021/2022 Certificate Program.

The IPRC’s Certificate Program is an innovative year-long program combining creative writing workshops with instruction in design, book arts and print production. Students choose one of four disciplines: Poetry, Prose, Comics or Art Book. Over the course of two semesters students deepen their creative practice, and produce a print run of a chapbook, zine or art book using the studio resources at the IPRC.


With instruction from many of Portland’s finest poets, writers, art book practitioners, comics artists, printmakers and designers, Certificate Program students produce an edition of original work over the course of the year. Students spend the first semester generating a body of creative work, and in the second semester learn the production skills required to design, produce and bind their finished chapbooks, zines, or art books.

The program’s main objectives are to help each student develop their own voice, and foster a lasting and sustainable creative practice. The Certificate Program was envisioned as an alternative to traditional MFA programs, which often either require relocation, or are prohibitively expensive. The IPRC’s program, in contrast, was designed to integrate seamlessly with the busy lives of working artists and writers, and is a significantly lower-cost offering.

We strive to make our workshops student-centered and discussion-based, with curriculum attuned to contemporary discourse in the literary and independent publishing communities. We commit to equity and inclusion as central motivators for our work, and view social justice as inseparable from creative expression. The values of the Certificate Program are deeply informed by the IPRC’s Mission & Equity Statements.

“It’s possible that the IPRC is the future of both writing and publishing—a place committed to the study of prose and poetry, but also the craft of layout, printing, and binding as well. To see the books and zines produced at the IPRC on a daily basis is to witness that the culture of print—i.e. the culture of thought itself—might not be dying after all. Hell, at the IPRC it’s even thriving.”

Jon Raymond
Oregon Book Award-winning author of Livability

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