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lemonboo

Fall 2017 Theatre and Performance Studies PhDs

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Hello, all.  I figured I would insert myself into the collective waiting game.  I am applying to a combination of MA/PhD and terminal MA programs for Fall 2017.  The three PhD programs to which I've applied are Cornell, Tufts, and Columbia.  Additionally, I have applied to the MA programs at Maryland CP, Emerson, Oregon, Illinois Urbana, Ohio State, and a final set which includes UNLV, Pitt, and Missouri-KC.  I know that's not the specific topic of this thread, but I wanted to include that information to illustrate the wide net which I've decided to cast.

Congrats on the interviews to those who've already gotten those calls.  I wish you all well.

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How nice to see the group growing. Welcome mjdances, and congratulations on your Berkeley interview!  Welcome to you too Gamb1t. Glad to read about where you're applying. What are you looking for in a program?

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Welcome to the group mjdances and Gamb1t! 

I think my interview with Cal was ok, but who knows . . . I thought my UCSD interview was terrible and I was accepted to the program. 

lemonboo: The interview was about an hour, and the questions were really specific to my application. From what I could gather, every interviewee was asked tailored questions to try to fill in some gaps about fit, etc. I was, however, asked the standard, why this program? 

mjdances: how did your interview go? Where else are you applying?

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2 hours ago, lemonboo said:

How nice to see the group growing. Welcome mjdances, and congratulations on your Berkeley interview!  Welcome to you too Gamb1t. Glad to read about where you're applying. What are you looking for in a program?

Well, Tufts is my top choice for PhD study primarily because of a combination of faculty and location.  My intended course of doctoral study involves a heavy integration of both Colonial politics and theatre.  I choice Cornell and Columbia somewhat based on geography, as well.  I don't know if you know this or not, but the South is an awful place to conduct theatre research (unless it is centered on regional issues or events).  I know.  Big shocker, right?  In the case of Cornell, however, I liked how my discussions with current faculty and students went as it pertains my strong preference for scholarly focus.  There was not a potential individual advisor I felt matched as well as at Columbia or Tufts, but there appears to be more options for medium fits, if that makes sense.  Columbia is mostly an emotional application.  It was the first program in which I ever became interested, so I have had occasional contact with the department for nearly three years. 

As far as the MA programs, I am not particularly picky about them.  If it comes to that, I will basically attend where ever I will accrue the least debt.  If I am to go the terminal MA route, it is essentially only a stepping stone for applying to additional PhD programs next year.  There are a lot of positives to that approach, though.  I am interested in many additional doctoral programs that require an MA for consideration.

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scurvs22! that's fantastic that you got an acceptance from UCSD!!

I think my UCB interview went pretty well. The professor asked me a few specific questions about my project, then a few standard questions: why this program, what kind of challenges have you faced and how did you overcome them, etc. The conversation was about an hour and very amicable; it felt a bit more like a chat about my interests and the program than a super formal interview. So I'm crossing my fingers. It would be a really good program for my research, since my work lives both in PS and in dance studies.

Welcome to the gang, Gamb1t. I did an MA before applying for PhD programs and while it was expensive, finishing the MA does open up some other programs, and my program helped me find an approach to my research that turned out to be really fruitful.

How's everyone holding up during the waiting? Anyone else working on dance-related topics?

 

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@mjdances my fiancee has a BFA in Dance Performance and is planning to apply to MFA programs depending on where I settle for school.  However, she is considering a more pedagogical approach and thus open to MA study.  I doubt she will ever be interested in anything beyond that, though. 

Also, I have attached the tattoo I got 3 summers ago for the 5-year anniversary of MJ's passing.  I might be making a horrible assumption based on the username and dance interested, but I feel like it's a safe jump.

IMG_3834.JPG

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Thanks everyone!  The speed of the offer alone was so unexpected, I think I may still be a little in shock. It seems that the acceptance rate of people on the threads here in past years has been pretty high (I stalked all of the past theatre threads during application season . . .there. . . I said it). So, I'm feeling pretty good vibes for our little group. 

mjdances: my fingers are crossed for you with Cal. Did you get your MA at Tisch / did you apply to their Ph.D?

Gamb1t: that is a serious tattoo!

 

 

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Well, what led me here in the first place was that I found a current Theatre History PhD student's blog about when he had applied to programs.  He mentioned that he would not recommend coming here and obsessing over others' results and refreshing the pages a hundred times per day.  Naturally, that's exactly what I started doing before I even bothered finishing the article.

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That tattoo is amazing. Michael is kind of adjacent to my area of dance research (broadly, circulation of US social and popular dance forms), but I DO have a friend working on him for her phd research! Best of luck to your girlfriend, too! If you all end up near Philly, Temple has both MA and an MFA programs in dance. I'm applying for their phd. The great thing about an MFA is that it's also a terminal degree, so if she decides she wants to teach in higher ed, she'll have the qualifications.

the mj is for my first and middle initials. :) My MA is from Tisch and I am applying for the PhD. I loved my program. It has its pros and cons, and if there's anyone thinking about applying to it as a Plan B, I think it's a good idea to talk to people who have gone through it before deciding to do the MA there because everyone has such a different experience based on their goals and expectations coming into the program, their advisors, their course load, their research interests and so on. The program is expensive, short, and intense, but the intensity of the program set me up to know how I'll need to function in the first couple years of a PhD. In talking to current grad students at the places I've interviewed and visited, everyone seems really stressed out about the work load their first year. Now I've been through it and know what my needs are to not stress out so badly in that environment. Not that there won't be a ton of work or it won't be difficult. I just know what I need to manage it.

I decided to limit how often I check the results search (because THAT'S the crazy-making thing for me) and to spend time on this forum. My partner and our families are super supportive, but my friends from my MA who want to do PhDs are already in a program. It's great to have some people to chat with who are going through the same thing. 

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This is mostly unrelated, but what's up with Brooklyn not accepting online submissions.  One of their biggest angles is lauding their campus as being the most technologically-advanced of the CUNY system.  I just find that humorous, and I want to post something to take my mind off checking my email and refreshing the results page every 14 seconds.

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Hi All,

I've applied to just a few PhD programs in Theatre/ Performance Studies for Fall with a particular interest in PS and combining ethnography/ ecology/ queer studies. It was a bit last minute so I also have plans to maybe reapply in a year when my master's thesis is done and I'm more focused.

I wanted to hop on here and ask if any of you know much about UC Santa Barbara's program? Or have colleagues there? It's not as high-profile as the schools it looks like most of you are pursuing, but in the (scant) available ratings it also seems well-regarded.. Any info/ thoughts/ insights would be appreciated!

Congrats to those who've had good news so far; to those still waiting, I feel you! Also Love Michael Jackson a whole lot, so high-five on the tattoo. : ) And much thanks for any input anyone can offer! 

haha re:brooklyn, isn't life just full of these incoherencies.. @Gamb1t

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Gamb1t: I feel you on the refreshing every fourteen seconds. Had I not happened to apply to programs that start the process really early, I would be permanently attached to the results page despite the fact that there are few participants in our field. 

Welcome dopamine!  I applied to UCSB as well. I'm not an insider, obviously, but I did visit the campus in the fall. Dr. Simon Williams is retiring this year and they are looking for a replacement for both him and Dr. Kim (she went to UCLA), so their department is in a bit of a transition. From what I understand, they lean a bit more toward theater and dance than performance, but they seem to be quite flexible about taking classes in cognate departments and at other UC's. It seems like it is virtually impossible to get a clear indication of the rankings within this field because it's hard to compare Theater, Performance, and Theater and Performance. The one ranking guide I could find ranks UCSB as #4, but also doesn't list Brown at all. Nevertheless, UCSB is supposed to be a pretty great program. And, for what it's worth, the people I interacted with during my visit seemed happy which left an impression because it was the end of the quarter. My current campus did not reflect the same kind of calm (students or faculty) that week, so it stuck out. I'm assuming that you are asking because of their interview weekend?

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Hi dopamine_17. Welcome to the group. I don't know any more about UCSB than what scurvs22 said (and I didn't even know all of that). 

I'm just biding my time waiting for some news...Hope all of y'all are handling the waiting game with relative calm.

 

 

 

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Looks like UC-Irvine has sent out interview notices.  We have a new hit on the results page.

Edited by Gamb1t
Missing word.

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Thanks for the welcome, everybody!

@scurvs22 Yes, gratefully, I've been getting positive feedback from UCSB and will be present at the visiting weekend. I guess my main concern was that my plans are really Performance more than Theater Studies, but as you said, it sounds like they would be supportive of that. Just trying to find out as much as I can about the program- thank you for the details, all useful information worth considering. May I ask where you're going to school now? I have applications to Stanford (long shot) and UCLA that I have yet to hear back from, but I was rejected from Cal.. so still not sure how it'll shape up.

wishing you all the best, you've done great work to get this far!

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Here's a question that just popped into my mind: 

Have you ever known any schools to schedule their interviews the same weekend as any of the major conferences?  I am competing in the undergraduate costume design and am an undergraduate finalist for the playwriting competition at two separate southern and mid-western conferences in March.  I wouldn't think so because I know there are a lot of graduate auditions and such going on, but it makes me wonder.

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dopamine_17: I don't go to UCLA if that's what you're worried about? I did go there for undergrad, however, and loved it. 

Gamb1t: I remember reading on one of the past year threads that someone had to skype in lieu of campus interview because of a conference conflict. I think s/he still got into that program. 

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Provided that the same programs maintain their same schedule from previous years, some applicants might start hearing from another wave of institutions over the next week or two.  If that applies to you, good luck.  (And hopefully those schools haven't shifted their timelines too terribly)

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Hi Y'all

I got a phone call from Noe Montez at Tufts yesterday. He called to let me know that the graduate faculty was recommending me for admission to the program (Apparently the official admission has to go through the graduate school first).

Excited to hear it, but waiting to hear about other schools too

 

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I got no such call. Bummer. They're my top choice. By far. 

But congrats. I hope that's a good sign for things to come. 

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Yep, just got my rejection notification via email. Not even a waitlist.  Ouch. That is not encouraging.

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lemonboo: That is so awesome!  Congratulations!

Gamb1t: I know it's hard, but try not to let it get you down. There are so many factors in this process we can't control. Research fit with the particular professors who are not going on sabbatical, don't have an overload of dissertations in progress, etc . . .all things we don't really know when we apply . . . these all have a lot of weight in this process. Wherever you land is the place where the faculty can give you the most support you need to do what you want to do. I don't know if you have read the threads from past cycles but they are really helpful. There are people who were accepted into amazing programs in March / April after a string of rejection letters. 

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That's kind of the demoralizing part:  Tufts was the only program to which I applied that had two faculty members with publications in my intended research field.  Everywhere else has either one or someone that sort of specializes in something similar.  I never considered that program a shoe-in, by any means, but it was one of the ones about which I felt best.  And based on my communications with the faculty of various programs, it certainly had the best "feel" to it.  So to not even be waitlisted is a major disappointment.  The rejection letter was horribly impersonal, as well.  Blah.

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really sorry to hear that @Gamb1t- agree that it's impossible to understand the ins and outs of why/ how these decisions are made, there's so much that isn't up to us- but the places you do get into eventually will have the resources to help you do your best- it's really the truth that with every door closed a window opens (and you can always reapply!)

 

congratulations to you @lemonboo !

no news for me lately... eagerly waiting

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