Last year the Classical Studies Department at the University of Michigan announced the launch of its Bridge MA, a fully funded program designed to prepare scholars from diverse backgrounds for entry into one of Michigan’s Ph.D. programs in Classical Studies or related fields. There are few programs like it, particularly at public universities. One of its architects, Professor Sara Ahbel-Rappe, recently received a competitive award for her diversity efforts. I connected with her along with Dr. Young Richard Kim, the Onassis Foundation’s new Director of Educational Programs, to discuss Michigan’s diversity efforts and its partnership with the Onassis Foundation.
As they informed me, Bridge MA students have three semesters of full funding, two of which carry no teaching requirements. They also receive Onassis Distinguished Diversity Scholarships, which provide supplemental funds for research or travel related to their Classics education. For example, funds might be used for additional language study, participation in an archaeological dig, or internship opportunities at the Onassis Cultural Centre in Athens. There is currently one Bridge MA student, and another three are expected to enroll next year. Although Bridge MA students must reapply for admission to one of Michigan’s Ph.D. programs, their application process is streamlined, and once admitted, students are guaranteed full funding.
Originally published by Arum Park, SCS blog, October 3rd 2018.