The Institute for European Studies has been a great home department for my Master’s study at IU. Because the department is necessarily interdisciplinary, it is committed to collaboration with faculty from many other departments, allowing EURO’s students to network with professors and students across disciplinary lines. The program also allows students to tailor their studies along the research that most interests them instead of having a very rigid schedule of classes to be taken at a specific time.
The interdisciplinary nature of WEST allowed me to take seminars in Cultural Studies, Political Theory, History, Germanic Studies, and more. My coursework helped focus my research interests in Turkish-German studies and European cinema, culminating in a thesis project that explored affect in Turkish-German director Fatih Akin's films. The MA program also served as springboard for further graduate study. I am currently working toward a PhD in German Studies at the University of Michigan, where I plan to continue working on the interests WEST helped me define.
EURO has been a consistently excellent academic unit from a variety of standpoints. I applied late to the program, in May of 2012, and was still able to receive funding for the 2012-2013 academic year. What was a research fellowship in the fall semester turned into a full-fledged Graduate Assistantship in the spring semester. I was informed of an opportunity to study in Berlin via the Direct Exchange program, to which EURO has sent at least one student every year of the program’s existence. I applied to and was accepted to the Direct Exchange program and received funding for an intensive language course before the semester starts in Berlin. Thanks to the skills I have gained through studying with the Institute for European Studies, I feel as though I am in a very strong position to continue on towards a doctoral degree in Germanic studies. WEST – its program, affiliated faculty, staff and opportunities, was the decisive factor in my decision to attend IU.
"I have found in the Institute for European Studies a place to explore the wide diversity of courses that IU has to offer in disciplines ranging from History to Economics to Foreign Languages. The joint-degree program has been instrumental in giving me real-world application to the cultural knowledge I gained in the EURO curriculum. Beyond the academic curriculum, working for the center allowed me to expand upon and relate my knowledge of Europe to the Bloomington community and across the United States."