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turktheman

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About turktheman

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    Double Shot

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    New England
  • Application Season
    2017 Fall
  • Program
    PhD

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  1. turktheman

    Another "Stats Needed for PhD Admissions" Query

    I'd look around online for student profiles to the programs you mentioned. See if you can come across CVs or something. You might find that your portfolio stacks up with some of the previously admitted students. You shouldn't need 2 years of intensive language preparation to be in liturgical studies (this is probably my woefully ignorant opinion). If there's weight placed on your musical talent, then that might be of more importance than advanced Latin. I realize there's probably all types of emphasis in these programs from liturgical praxis, liturgical theology, liturgical history, etc. If what you are wanting to do is work on the development of western liturgical traditions, then the case for Latin becomes greater. The best bet for answering your question is to find profiles of admitted students or to e-mail the department's admission's secretary to inquire about "fit." I'd ask how important language is for your desired program. There's no one size fits all even within programs. The same program could admit someone with hardly any language prep one year and another year admit someone with eight languages.
  2. turktheman

    Another "Stats Needed for PhD Admissions" Query

    A year of Latin might be enough for Marquette's program, but CUA and ND are heavy on languages. For liturgical studies, you'll be stacked up against candidates who went to Catholic school and did Latin for most of their primary and secondary schooling. They knew they wanted to do something in Religious Studies, so they took Latin in college and grad school. In the least, they have several years of Latin on their transcript. It isn't unheard of for liturgical studies applicants to have a year or two of Greek or Syriac as well. Ultimately, the process is far more subjective than anyone ever let's on. It happens all the time that an applicant with minimal language training gets into top programs. It also happens that students with just a BA get into top doctoral programs. After all, the US program is built with 2 years of coursework before exams in part to beef up your languages before the dissertation phase. As for the GRE, yours is probably good enough for any program to admit you if they want you. The TA position isn't likely going to help or hurt your application. In short, I'd apply if you have the money and are fully aware of the incredibly slim chances of getting in.
  3. turktheman

    Southern Baptist Sinkhole

    So your follow up helps a lot. Do what NTAC recommends: take as many languages as you can in the Spring. Stokes, who did his PhD under John Collins, can do an independent study in Aramaic and Ge'ez if need be. He is well connected and his recommendation letter would probably carry the greatest weight. So would Steve Ortiz's recommendation. He's very well respected with Iron Age folks, including Deirdre Fulton at Baylor. Klein isn't nearly as well known as people tend to thing he is. Perkins School of Theology at SMU is certainly a great place. I'm not too sure who is there though in HB. Brite would probably be your best bet. Baylor *might* just add slightly to your dilemma since not everyone, even among seasoned academics, are aware that Truett Seminary is wholly other than Southern Baptist. There's no confusion about SMU and Brite though. (I say this as someone fully aware of the difference between Baylor and SBC seminaries). For me it would come down to funding.
  4. turktheman

    Southern Baptist Sinkhole

    You've got some excellent advice here. It would be unlikely that someone from an SBC seminary would land in a top tier PhD program. PTS has in the past taken students from SEBTS, so that might be an option. You do have options though, and each one depends on your determination. If you decide to finish out the ThM at SWBTS, you can apply for doctoral work outside of the US. This is where the majority of confessional students will land from conservative seminaries. Funding is almost non-existent unless you have GI Bill, willing to take out massive loans, or get your local church to back you. I wouldn't do it, personally. You can, however, find programs in South Africa and New Zealand that are funded and accept US Students. Oslo in New Zealand is one for sure. I'd check out Stellenbosch, Pretoria, and North-West University in South Africa. Canada might also be an option, but I am not as aware of their funding situation. You can also aim at more open-minded evangelical places like Fuller, TEDS, Wheaton, Westminister Theological Seminary, RTS, etc. SBC doesn't have an overly negative connotation at those places. Funded in these schools is not tremendous, but you could maybe hope for tuition to be covered. You might also consider some Catholic schools that may not be as concerned about the SBC sinkhole. Marquette could be one. If you decide to jump ship, you are still not guaranteed to land in a funded doctoral program. It is a gamble--probably financially and emotionally. I do know that Brite Divinity School (associated with TCU) has great funding for their ThM program. Vanderbilt just launched it's ThM program (https://news.vanderbilt.edu/2018/09/18/vanderbilt-divinity-to-offer-master-of-theology-degree/). It also promises guaranteed funding for it (who knows how much though). Do not do a ThM and pay much for it. (This game isn't worth it. Become a librarian or something else if you like university culture). You can also apply for MA degrees at various places. Again, Vanderbilt has good funding for their MDiv and the 1 year MA in Jewish Studies program. Yale Divinity School also makes attractive offers for their MA and MDiv programs. Notre Dame can offer full tuition plus a small stipend. So there are certainly options for you to take advantage of that might not cost you anything. In the end, it comes down to doubling down or doing something else. This is true for everyone of course, but if you are in a sinkhole, it might not be as easy for you to get out as someone who isn't in one. You can do a ThM or MA somewhere else, perhaps with little out of pocket cost. Apply for doctoral work, get in. Or you could bust and have wasted likely 2 years chasing a funded program. Not knowing your situation's full details, I would nonetheless say apply to PTS, Marquette, a funded foreign PhD program (or two), and a couple of those evangelical places (if you are still broadly in that category--SBC is hard right, so anything to the left would be better) for doctoral work. I'd also submit applications to Brite and Vanderbilt Divinity School for the ThM since they have funding. In addition, I would apply to YDS's MA in Bible or Second Temple Judaism, ND's MTS program, and Vanderbilt University's MA in Jewish Studies (wide program, but they do let people specialize in HB/Rabbinic Judaism). See what happens with acceptances and funding and go from there.
  5. turktheman

    PhD Applications Fall '18 Season

    I wouldn't be shocked if invites are sent over the weekend. We tend to think in terms of hearing only on weekdays, but ND has been known to send invites on Saturdays. (Not to suggest that it will happen this weekend).
  6. turktheman

    PhD Applications Fall '18 Season

    I can't speak to UTS, but Fordham can vary depending on subfield and year. In Bible or Ancient Christianity they meet late January, and they tend to call admitted candidates sometime at the beginning of January or within 2 weeks of February. Funding package takes about another 2 weeks to get after that. They do keep a short list of candidates in case the contacted candidate rejects the offer.
  7. turktheman

    Admissions Chances for an Army Vet/Aspiring Chaplain

    I would check out Brite Divinity School. I can't comment directly on UU there, but in many regards they are very open and progressive. I think this article illustrates the diversity of students and their chaplaincy program. If I remember right, they got a lot of flack over Jason Heap, but they stuck to their convictions. Valerie Forstman use to be the head of admissions (maybe she still is); she is an exceptionally pleasant person and very helpful in talking to potential students about the Brite community and the potential fit. I'd look her up if you are interested. It also doesn't hurt that Brite tends to have very good funding and cheap cost of living compared to NE programs. I also found this article from UU's website that lists some programs to check out.
  8. turktheman

    PhD Applications Fall '18 Season

    I have a friend who applied to Duke Divinity for doctoral work (not to their GDR) last year. He mentioned that they extended the deadline a day or two after the deadline to give another week or so to all the applications still in process. Could be something like that. As for applications, I think there's been a downward trend for a while based on conversations I've had (no hard data, just stuff in passing). Causations tricky, but one thing I hear often is that the rebound from the recession over the last few years has weeded out people who have options to do other things (I wouldn't discount the tax issue either). I don't know if that type of weeding out makes it any less competitive though.
  9. turktheman

    PhD Applications Fall '18 Season

    They made two NT offers the year before last--both were internal: one accepted and the other went to Harvard. Last year, faculty nominated an internal candidate, but the admission committee didn't allot a spot to NT, sadly. I don't want to discourage someone from applying to a program, but it is indeed in your best interest, y00nsk, to reach out to faculty to see if an application is worthwhile since they may very well have zero plans of taking anyone on. Applying to schools is expensive, but if you decide to shift your Yale application fee elsewhere (or increase your budget!), I second looking into Fordham and would also recommend UT Austin (Religions of Ancient Mediterranean). Neither of these programs get the attention they deserve on gradcafe (at least from my view--obviously debatable). What's not debatable is that they have A++ faculty and competitive stipends. What's more important is that they seem to be adding faculty and foci while other programs are shrinking.
  10. turktheman

    Choices and Decisions

    FSU doesn't have the name recognition that many other schools that have had programs for decades now. I can pass along what I've heard from professors at Baylor and FSU when I was working through the application decision through PM if you'd like. I would just encourage you to reach out to a few professors to inquire about recent job placement from each school. Personally, I think for what you want to do, FSU has a solid program. You mention Levenson and your own interests in Josephus. I've only heard very positive things about Levenson from faculty at my school. He's a well-known scholar among those who know NT/Early Church and late Second Temple Judaism. Matt Goff is tremendous. If you haven't done Aramaic yet, he would likely be your instructor. His DSS work on sapiential literature and the Book of the Giants is great stuff, and he like Levenson is well-known. I don't know much about Kelly, but her faculty profile indicates she's working on disability studies in the early church/NT. This is an ever increasing field of interests and is a hot-topic now. In classics, you have Marincola's work on Greek historiography and Slaveva-Griffin's on neo-platonism. So, you have solid professors at FSU that can lead some truly interesting dissertation topics. A dissertation on disability in Josephus and Philo would be great pulling together of faculty strengths, but I don't think a dissertation on Paul's pneumatology would fit well. If you are at all interested in something like the latter or similar, FSU would not be a good fit. I think Baylor would be better able to work with people wanting to research and write on more-or-less NT Theology--broadly speaking. At the same time, Longenecker has worked on more historical matters than his colleagues. In his book on the Jerusalem collection, he does offer a bit of a correction to Friesen's economic scales (I haven't seen anyone adopt Longnecker's corrections), and he has the new book on crosses at Pompeii (I haven't read it yet). Gaventa has been around forever, and she is the most well-known of Baylor's faculty, but she doesn't do much in backgrounds. Parsons does interact quite a bit with physiognomy and the progymnasmatia handbooks, esp. Theon. I would consider this background for exploring rhetorical analysis of NT/early church. Parsons has also applied his research on progymnasmata to discuss disabilities in Luke-Acts--or at least the rhetoric of disability. Novakovic's DSS work is solid, and she has published some key translations from what I remember. Iverson overlaps somewhat with Parson's concern with narratology, but I'm honestly not familiar with his work beyond the edited volume he did with Skinner who is at Loyola Chicago. I do know Baylor offers a seminar on backgrounds as part of its class rotation, but I couldn't comment more on that (I'm sure other are able to do so). All that considered, I would likely pick Baylor over FSU for one reason: better financial aid package. If finances were equal, it would be a very tough decision. For backgrounds, I think FSU edges Baylor out both in Second Temple and early Church. If you wanted to do narrative approaches to NT, Baylor it is. You won't get any of that from FSU. What you will get at FSU, however, is solid opportunities to incorporate Greco-Roman philosophical schools, religions, literature, etc. and Second Temple literature and history into your research of the NT and early church.
  11. turktheman

    Choices and Decisions

    How do you feel about your chances coming off the waitlist at Brown or PTS?
  12. turktheman

    Choices and Decisions

    How many programs are you waitlisted at? I can say that I had every intention of making a decision in early March, but that was not possible for me because I had a few offers to weigh against one another, which took far more time than I had expected. Now that we are more or less in April, people are finalizing their decisions and notifying programs of their declination of offer. This also applies to those holding out committing to a program in hopes of coming off a waitlist at one of their top picks.
  13. There's a lot of residue from bygone eras on this ranking.
  14. turktheman

    PhD Applications Fall '17 Season

    Well, the time is close, then. I'm assuming emails will trickle through the day, but it could come in groups. We'll know soon enough.
  15. turktheman

    PhD Applications Fall '17 Season

    What subfield are you?
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