Beyond the Classroom

  • Onur Toker

    English PhD student Kemal Onur Toker has received a Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowship for his project "The Poetics of the Sharing Economy: Shakespeare and Milton in the Age of the Leviathan."

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    Professional Development

    The Director of Graduate Studies constructs workshops for English graduate students to learn about the job market and other professional development skills. The recent workshops include:

    Demystifying the Job Market

    An introduction to the workings of the job market meant for graduate students at all stages in the program. There was a discussion about MLA JIL job ads and excerpts from The Professor Is In.

    Grant Writing Workshop 

    An introduction to the basic steps in crafting a fellowship application: writing an introduction, telling a compelling story, foregrounding your contribution, and articulating the project's relevance beyond your field

    Summer Before the Job Market

    A session on writing, planning, and making the best of use of your summer. The workshop focused on preparing for the job market and writing dissertation completion fellowship applications.

    Career Diversity 101

    This workshop, lead by Sue Levine, the Associate Director of Career Services, guided graduate students on how to begin planning for multiple possible career paths.

    Writing a Diversity Statement for the Job Market

    This workshop was lead by Allyson Livingstone, the Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Education, Training, and Development at Brandeis. The Diversity and Inclusion Statement is a necessary part of job applications.

    Writing a Teaching Philosophy Statement

    Mary-Ann Winkelmes, from the Center for Teaching and Learning, discussed writing a teaching philosophy statement for the job market.

    Proseminar and Article Publication Workshop


    This biweekly proseminar (ENG 350a) for first-year PhD students addresses the social and professional aspects of academic work in literary studies. Our series of discussions and workshops will cover skills useful for teaching and scholarship, practical issues such as navigating graduate school, institutional questions about academic and related work, and larger questions about the future of the humanities. The course format combines discussion, brief presentations and guest speakers, and is intended to accommodate a wide range of student concerns and interests. The required course text is Karen Kelsky, The Professor Is In: The Essential Guide to Turning Your Ph.D. Into a Job.

    Article Workshop

    The Department offers ENG 360c, The Article Publication Proseminar--a credit/no credit course open to all PhD and MA students. This Proseminar differs from the Dept's other courses in that its direct focus is on scholarly publication. Over the course of the year, participants develop a proposal into an article that is ready for submission. Topics include creating an outline, workshopping drafts, and learning about journal expectations.

    Conferences and Seminars

    English Graduate Student Conference

    Since 2004 the graduate students have organized a conference annually. Students and scholars from Brandeis and other institutions present papers related to a specific theme.

    Mandel Center for the Humanities

    The Center hosts many events throughout the academic year.

    • The Mandel Lectures in the Humanities: A Prominent Scholars presents a series of lectures over the course of a week.

    • Close Looking: An interdisciplinary series offering in-depth discussion of some of our university's greatest treasures from the Rose Art Museum and the Robert D. Farber University Archives & Special Collections.

    • Bridging the Two Cultures: Members from the Science faculty share the methods and goals of scientific research. This series aims to forge new connections and increase mutual understanding between the different academic branches of the University.

    Brandeis Novel Symposium

    This Symposium has a dual focus: Scholars with expertise pertaining to the chosen novel will explore the work and its context and a panel will approach the work with a broader set of theorectical, critical and conceptual issues.

    Minima Moralia Today: A Symposium

    On September 20, 2019 the academic community will gather to discuss Theodor Adorno's seminal work Minima Moralia.

    Funding Sources

    Departmental Sources of Funding

    Each spring the Dept. selects a recipient of the Milton Hindus Memorial Endowed Dissertation Fellowship. The ~$1000 Fellowship is named after one of the founding members of the Brandeis faculty and a long-time teacher and scholar in the English Department.

    Each fall the Dept. selects a recipient of the Gilmore-Valenze Dissertation Endowed Dissertation Fellowship. The ~$1,300 Fellowship was created by Michael T. Gilmore, a much-beloved faculty member, and his wife.

    Due to the generosity of a donor, the Department is usually able to offer $350-500 Preyer travel grants each semester for graduate students to attend conferences or pursue research at libraries and archives.

    Each fall, 4th-year PhD students receive a supplemental stipend of ~$2,000. This funding is provided by the an endowment from the Evan Frankel Foundation.

    Other University Sources of Funding

    Please visit the GSAS Fellowships and Grants page which includes information on conference travel reimbursement, University Prize Instructorships and Dissertation Year Fellowships.

    Please visit the Graduate Students Affairs (GSA) Funding Opportunities page for information about travel grants and conference hosting funding.

    Please visit the Provost Dissertation Fellowships page for information about funding for dissertation related funding, especially for travel.

    Beginning the Job Search

    The Job Seekers group meets frequently throughout the year to help advanced students identify career opportunities, develop application strategies, and prepare for job interviews. We workshop crucial job search materials, including job letters, research statements, CVs, and teaching portfolios. 

    Please visit the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (GSAS) Center for Career and Professional Development website for more information.