Protagonist Posted July 15, 2011 Share Posted July 15, 2011 To give a brief synopsis of my qualifications and interests: I graduated from UConn, a decent but nothing special state school, with a BA in English this year and I'm taking a year off. My GPA there was a 3.967, graduated summa cum laude, and I was given membership in Phi Beta Kappa. I only attended there for two years however, my first years of college were at a local community college where I got around a 3.8, I can't exactly remember, and started to focus on taking at least one English class a semester as I was slowly learning that was my field of interest. Once I hit UConn however it was nearly all English courses for me besides the few other requirements I had to meet. I ended up taking courses in a pretty focused manner, concentrating on contemporary American Lit along with cultural studies. My 'academic theme', for lack of a better term, was war and memory. I managed to take 3 independent studies with some of my favorite professors that all tied into this, one on political/war films and novels, another on cross-cultural exchanges between the US and Asia in literature, film and comics where I wrote my term paper on the Japanese experience of WWII, and another focusing on postmodern American Lit, a class my school didn't offer. Along with this I had to take a variety of related topic courses, I chose Asian-American studies and once again managed to tailor this towards my theme, I took a course on Japanese-American internment and Japanese-American involvement in WWII as well as a class on revolutionary theory and history that dealt a lot with the Vietnam War. I also managed to cram a class on adaptation theory in, though it only dealt with Shakespearean movies it still proved quite helpful for learning about adaptation and appropriation in general and was my only opportunity to do so during my undergrad. Honestly, I don't know how much more focused I could have gotten myself considering I only had 2 years at the institution and had a variety of other required courses to take. From all of this I have 3 professors who I've done independent studies with and have become good friends with, one of whom considers me to be in her top 3 best students ever. From that I think I'll have 3 very good letters of recommendation from professors who know my work very well. I also think that this group of courses gives me a somewhat cohesive narrative that will allow me to create a well focused statement of purpose. Along with that I had the opportunity to work on a 15 page term paper that fits in with my topic of interest which I will use as a letter of recommendation. My GRE isn't until next week and I have ample time to retake it so I am not entirely worried about it, though I have been studying. That all being said, how high do you think I should aim at this point and what programs would you suggest I look at? A cursory glance last year with professors yielded a list containing: Yale (reaching for the stars, but oh well), NYU, CUNY, WUSTL, University of Illinois - Urbana, UC Davis, University of Chicago, University of Michigan - Ann Arbor, University of Iowa and University of Florida. My interests are grounded in contemporary American Lit and memory studies, but I would like to branch out at some point in my grad career to cultural studies. I was advised to not make this explicit and the only goal on my applications as it's still a somewhat risky field, but rather to put such things as film and comic studies down as academic interests that I have a small level of proficiency in. Somewhere like NYU seems ideal for me considering the heavy emphasis on interdisciplinary studies; I'd love to substitute courses in medieval and early Brit Lit for courses in film studies. Sorry if I was a bit rambling here and thanks in advance for any sort of information you can give! Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
Create an account or sign in to comment
You need to be a member in order to leave a comment
Create an account
Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!Register a new account
Already have an account? Sign in here.Sign In Now