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Department of Classics to offer fully funded master's fellowships for first time beginning Fall 2020

<p>James McGlew, professor and chair of the Department of Classics, said few master’s programs offer full funding.</p>

James McGlew, professor and chair of the Department of Classics, said few master’s programs offer full funding.

The Rutgers University Department of Classics has announced that for the first time they are offering fully funded master's fellowships beginning in the Fall 2020 semester. The two-year fellowships include tuition remission and an annual stipend of $25,000. 

“We've long wanted to be able to provide funding for students on our (master's) track, which has always been a core component of our graduate program. (Students on our (doctorate) track are fully funded.) Thanks to some surplus money in our departmental budget, we are fortunate to be able to offer at least one — and quite possibly two fully funded — two-year (master's) fellowships for 2020-22,” said James McGlew, professor and chair of the Department of Classics.

McGlew said that for students who wish to pursue a doctorate in Classics, the master's degree is an increasingly popular choice. This will be sound academic preparation before students pursue their doctorate programs, particularly in Greek and Latin, the demanding languages that are at the heart of the discipline of Classics.

He also said students are keen on learning Latin and Greek later in their junior or senior years. Therefore, when they decide to continue to study them and explore the world of the ancient Mediterranean in more depth, postbaccalaureate programs or master's programs provide a helpful, skill-building bridge to more advanced doctoral study.

“We're very excited to be able to run these funded (master's) as a sort of pilot program at what we feel is an opportune time both for our department and for the field of Classics more generally,” he said. 

He said there are few renowned Classics departments that offer funding to master’s students but none of them are in New York or New Jersey. Therefore, McGlew said he hopes this program’s funding will attract highly competitive applicants from a larger pool of students who may prefer living in New Jersey and studying at Rutgers. 

McGlew said they are not certain for how long they would be able to offer these fellowships in coming years. This depends on fairly unpredictable budgetary circumstances.

Anyone can apply for this funding, he said. An applicant should have the equivalent of at least three years of college-level Latin and two years of college-level ancient Greek, according to the program website. It is also recommended that applicants take the Graduate Record Examinations.

McGlew said everyone who is able to contribute to Classics should have the opportunity to do so at a graduate level and above. He said Classics is an area that gets better as it gets more inclusive. 

“While any and all students qualified for master's study in Classics are strongly encouraged to apply, we hope that the funded (master's) may also attract applications from talented and promising students, in particular those from groups and backgrounds historically underrepresented in the field, for whom graduate study may not, for various social and/or economic reasons, otherwise be viable or accessible,” he said.

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