I believe very strongly in literary magazines in English departments. I published a lot in "Oracle" back at University of South Alabama. I even served as poetry editor one issue. I think that it gives a necessary first taste of the process of submission and publication.
I hadn't been very happy with my writing for my first two years at Illinois State. However, I finally got one piece to a place where I was happy with it and either because they agreed or because they were hard up enough for material, they took it. Either way, I'm still happy with the story for the most part.
Have a look: "The Letter" From Volume 3, issue 1 of Illinois State's fantastic lit magazine, "Euphemism".