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Mikkaela B

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  1. Mikkaela B

    Best places to apply?

    I was in a similar boat coming from undergrad. Without Latin, no medieval program will take you seriously for a PhD. I applied to MA programs without Latin training and I actually was laughed at during one campus visit. You can go ahead and strike the ivies from this list unless you’ve got a good connection to faculty or very niche interest that will resonate with one of them. I suggest saving the money you would spend on app fees and looking into other options What I suggest is looking into faculty at smaller, private, religious, or R2 schools with MA programs. Find faculty who could be a potential advisor and can open the door for you at the end of an MA, and be sure to spend your time focusing on language relevant to your topic. Latin will always be relevant to medieval Europe. Many smaller schools have great faculty with more time to spend with you. My advisor went to Fordham and I took classes with someone who is renowned in her area, plus went to Yale. A guy from my program went to a PhD at Yale in 2017. One of my former classmates started a PhD at Chapel Hill this year. If you’re not willing to go to an MA, it’s going to be tough but you can still work on Latin through some courses at your local college, community college, religious school, or maybe even a parish if you’ve got catholic and episcopal churches nearby. There are also some intensives at schools in Toronto and institutes like the MARCO at UT Knoxville where you attend for a month or two for like 6-12 college credits worth of training (not for the faint of heart).
  2. Mikkaela B

    Building Community and Spiritual Self-Care

    Thanks for the suggestion! I know we have a poster up, and I don't think my classmates mind hearing about it too much, but it feels somewhat awkward bringing it up because I think many of them aren't sure how to express a "thanks but no thanks." Maybe I could figure a way to give them a convenient "out"?
  3. Hello! How do you guys take care of yourselves spiritually? This is a huge component of my personal journey, and I have been very fortunate to be mentored and included in a group of grad students who undertake this together. I think it is hard to find this unless you expressly go hunting for it on your campus, so if this is important to you I would love to know how you balance this with your busy lives. Sometimes I feel very disconnected with my little community because I never see them around (we are all in different departments) and I would love to bring more open discussions on spiritual self-care into my department.
  4. Mikkaela B

    Should I decline my Ph.D. offer and re-apply?

    I don't think this is a question of ethics because a lot changes over the course of the 2-5 years you could be there. Funding moves around, life happens, and you may even find that you would prefer to stay once you get through the first hoops. Whether you go or not, don't decline the offer. Ask for a deferred acceptance or other options. Then you will still have a "safety" for the next round of applications. I've seen it happen before when people come in with a better application, but apply on an off year, and there are fewer funded spots available.
  5. I don't know much about your program or your country, but it has been my experience that they are willing to be very candid about your chances of being awarded more aid as you move forward. If there is a good chance your program can support you more in the future, that might inform your decision. If you do take a year off, ask if you can defer your acceptance rather than decline your offer. There is a lot you can do in the way of taking time off that does not require re-applying and possibly being denied the next year.

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