Doing Your MFA in Writing All Over Again

I recently bent the ear of two students at Pacific nearing the end of their study in the MFA in writing. The program director made one introduction while I was still sussing out the program before applying; the other was coincidentally a friend of a friend. I asked both of them: What do you know now at the end of your two years that you wish you knew at the start?

The responses were illuminating and, though I take them with a grain of salt, I feel more confident and forward-thinking as a result of digesting their input. So, given my recent success asking for reading list suggestions, I thought I’d once again call upon the residents of Blogolandia for advice.

If you’ve done an MFA, even long ago, how would you answer this question? Or even if you’ve studied writing at the undergraduate level or through some other fairly long-term program, what do you think I might want to know? And to all you layman poets with an allergy to the academic approach: what do you think I should I watch out for?

Thanks in advance for your thoughts and suggestions. I’m curious to hear what people really think, all with an eye toward maximizing the benefit of my experience in the coming two years.