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About dflanagan

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  1. No word for me either - it's shrouded in mystery
  2. Woah a Brandeis friend!!! I mentioned before that I'm going for modern European and French history... what do you work on/who's your advisor going to be? I'll PM you... So exciting! I hope my little bit of reconnaissance in that other thread made you more confident, not less... -Drew
  3. dflanagan

    Offer Accepted

    I went to the admitted students' gathering, and here's what I saw. They took five people this year- Three Americanists, an 18th century Russia person, and a 20th century France person (i.e. me). One of the Americanists had already confirmed his intent to come and wasn't at the meeting, another one was likely to confirm, and a third was leaning toward confirming but was also accepted a couple of other places. The Russian person was choosing between Brandeis, UCLA without guaranteed funding, and UI-UC with funding, and seemed pretty torn. In sum, it's possible if not likely that one or two slots will open up. Not sure how they do it, I figure if the Russianist declines they'll take another European historian, but one of the Americanists may still decline so we'll see... Good luck Rockeater! maybe we'll be colleagues next year. Also, my acceptance was with full funding (tuition remission, 20k stipend, health care) which seems pretty awesome to me.
  4. dflanagan

    Offer Accepted

    I've just accepted my offer at Brandeis! Which thins the herd for anyone on Emory's wait list, as I'll be withdrawing from consideration there. Good luck to all! Anyone else settled on Brandeis/other Boston schools?
  5. Freaking out about the job market in European history. It's keeping me up nights. I won't turn down my offers, but I am losing morale dishearteningly swiftly.
  6. dflanagan


    You can do it Rachel! I believe in you!
  7. Congrats and good luck!! Have you heard back from Brandeis Judaic Studies yet?
  8. Most stipends (between about 8500 and 34000 dollars a year) are in the 15 percent tax bracket. My stipend next year will be 20k, so the first 8.5k or so is taxed at 10 percent and the remaining 11,500 is taxed at 15 percent. This works out to about 2500 a year in federal taxes. State taxes vary. In Massachusetts, it's 5.3 percent regardless of income. That's another 1000 dollars a year, so I'll lose about 3500 a year in state and federal taxes. Only the stipend portion of aid is taxed. You can also deduct things like books and education expenses from your federal taxes, as I hope to. I'll really only have about 17,000 a year to live on, which in Boston/Waltham isn't much... but I didn't sign up for grad school to make money :/
  9. I may have been too positive in my first response! haha. I agree with most of what's being said here, in terms of the insane nature of the competition for just a few spots (my advisors, like many other people's, were sure I'd have a few choices and were surprised to learn otherwise). Fit is definitely the most important part, as well as a strong and focused background in history. I've known one person who I was fairly certain had her PhD from Rochester in African American history, and was a finalist for a tenure-track job at Wesleyan so... it varies from person to person, but yes, Rochester is not a tip-top program and if you can you should try to go somewhere better. Transatlantic and transnational focus is important, as well as strengths in varied areas. This might limit you to larger universities with large and varied faculties. Apply widely, but selectively. Don't just apply to three or four places, but don't apply places that lack the requisite fit. Your SOP is key as well, make sure you make your case to each department individually, emphasizing the things that make their department in particular a good fit. I understand the pessimism on this thread, this has been a difficult and (for many) disappointing year in grad school admissions. Brandeis, where I'll probably be next year, cut admission to all 19 of its doctoral programs in half this year. In history, two programs merged into one and instead of each accepting five funded candidates, the new combined program took five altogether. That said, if you have the right fit and a good dose of luck it can still be done. It might take more than one try, lots of applications, etc. but I don't want to tell everyone to abandon their academic ambitions like the proverbial sinking ship. By the way, the Brandeis programs that combined were in American and comparative history, but while the program is strong in comparative European history it's not worth applying to for Africa or Latin America. Good luck to all!
  10. dflanagan


    English and gender studies are both favorite fields of mine, but I'll be attending the PHD program in history next year! It's just sort of sinking in. What's your work on specifically? My specialty is 20th century France, the world wars, comparative fascisms and the history of the right. I'll be working with Prof. Jankowski and possibly Prof. Binion. Feel free to PM me if you want to talk about Brandeis or related things!
  11. University of Rochester is good in African-American studies and history, so I'd check that out. So is Ohio State, from what I understand. Don't worry too much about your GPA, mine was 3.46 (likewise from a top undergrad school) when I applied and while I didn't hit it out of the park I do have a funded offer from a place that I'm genuinely excited about (Brandeis) and a wait-list, plus MA offers from Chicago and NYU. The one place where I got a funded offer was the place with the best faculty fit- it was easy to tell from the beginning of my correspondence with my potential advisor that he was genuinely interested in the same things that I was. That overcame any GPA problem I might have had (I likewise had a weak freshman year and have improved since). Your GRE scores are definitely strong enough. Good luck starting your search! Definitely take a close look at the individual faculty members in your subfield at each place. Find at least two places outside of the top 25 that you would be happy to attend, because the process is such a crap shoot that even those places aren't a sure thing.
  12. dflanagan


    Who got into Brandeis? PHD or MA? What are your research interests and are you going to the visiting day thing? My info is elsewhere on this board, but I'll recap that my interests are in 20th century France and comparative fascisms.
  13. This is my reading. You did your undergraduate work at an Ivy (UPenn), then didn't get into a top 10 history program. That happens, the process is a crap shoot. However, you seem to have the idee fixe that an ivy league degree (such as an area studies MA) will not only ensure your admission to a top ten program, but will be worth the 30-70,000 dollars borrowed to earn it. My advisor, a distinguished older historian of France, once told me that "the MA isn't worth a hill of beans" and all of my advisors and friends with PHD's at my top-15 LAC have told me never to borrow money for graduate school, because academic employment doesn't pay well. I have a similar offer to the one that the OP has, a 1/3 tuition scholarship for a non-history MA (area studies isn't precisely history) at the University of Chicago. A 1/3 tuition scholarship from a top-5 university is a lure, not really a compliment. If they really wanted you, they could fund you adequately. MA's are a source of income for graduate schools, and in many cases the revenue from MA students funds PHD students. In addition, the Chicago program in question sent all of the history students who attended on to fully funded PHD's this year. However, out of the seven, one got into Oxford, one into Chicago's own program, one into an Ivy, and the other four got into programs that are ranked at the same level or below the level of Brandeis, my one funded PHD offer. Common sense says that there is absolutely no guarantee that my Chicago MA would get me a top-10 or even a top-25 phd. For my own part, I will be going with the recommendation of all of my (non-Ivy league but still pretty prestigious and Ivy league educated) faculty and attending a program at which I can receive funding and a living stipend that shows that the program actually supports my work, rather than giving my money to the University of Chicago (or Harvard) because its name. Best of luck to all, and if OP feels like it's possible to afford this MA without having to be paying for it ten years from now or more, then sure. But if you have a funded offer from a top school, going to a Harvard MA won't guarantee you any return on your investment. Just my two cents.
  14. As a Brandeis admit myself, I would argue that a small program like the one at Brandeis allows for more productive adviser-student relationships, not less. My situation is a bit different than yours in two ways. My advisor at Brandeis would be one of the scholars whose work is most like mine in the entire country, Paul Jankowski. However, if you're applying in U.S. history you must know that the U.S. program at Brandeis has an especially strong faculty and reputation. If your fit is not so good, though, I understand your hesitancy. Coming from a top undergraduate college, I've had pressure on me to go to a top ten school as well, but in this economy with cohorts cut in half even the former naysayers amongst my faculty advisors have expressed relief and pride at my admittance. Brandeis' ranking is at least partially due to the program's small size, and the fact that it is not comprehensive (can only train people effectively in U.S. and modern European history). However, its phds teach at top universities (as evidenced by Prof. Hartog) and the program seems to be well respected despite its "rank" assigned to it by a third-rate news magazine. My verdict would be to attend Brandeis if your faculty fit is strong. As David Engerman said to me recently, they would need two to three times as many faculty to have a comprehensive program, and so they can really only train scholars in their areas of strength. Honestly assess whether your area is one of them, and if it is then I honestly think you can do really well with a degree from there. Not to mention the funding is good, the teaching load is light, and the location is tough to beat. In my area, modern France, I would pick Brandeis over my likely other option, Emory, any day. This is because the faculty fit for me is better, and although Emory's rank is higher (28th) its placements are mainly at tiny colleges in Georgia which is not where I want to end up (rather be at a tiny college in New England). It's a personal decision, and a tough one at that. Best of luck to you! What's your other option? Maybe I'll see you in the fall! But don't go if you really don't want to. And remember, there are only five of us accepted with fellowship this year. Five. In all disciplines. That's an accomplishment. Don't think about where you didn't get in, that's water under the bridge. Become the best historian you can be! corny... but true.
  15. dflanagan

    History 2010

    Gotta represent the Andre. That said, I had a great white wine at a book signing (my advisor is retiring and they had an event for him) but I forgot the make. Always looking for cheap wine, seeing as one of the requirements for the PHD at any top-50 institution is a near-constant intake of wine. A good white is really refreshing, because so much of the white wine served at academic gatherings is crap.
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