UC Irvine School of Humanities to broaden career preparation for Ph.D. students with $25,000 NEH grantGrant will allow the School of Humanities to strategize on integrating career preparation into graduate curriculum and building pathways for careers outside of academia
The UC Irvine School of Humanities has received a $25,000 Next Generation PhD planning grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) to create a plan that will broaden career preparation for UCI’s humanities doctoral students beyond careers solely in the academy. The grant is matched by a Graduate Student Researcher position provided by UCI’s Graduate Division to support the planning process. This is the first year the NEH has provided Next Generation Ph.D. grants as part of its commitment to transform the culture of graduate education.
“While we believe a graduate education in the humanities is intrinsically of value to our students and society at large, we also want to ensure our graduates are empowered to put their knowledge to use in various careers both within and outside of academia,” said Georges Van Den Abbeele, dean of the UCI School of Humanities. “This NEH grant will allow us to create a thoughtful strategy to integrate career preparation into our curriculum and provide crucial training to all of our doctoral students.”
Led by UCI’s Julia Reinhard Lupton, associate dean for research and director of Humanities Commons, and Amanda Swain, associate director of Humanities Commons, the grant will bring together faculty, lecturers, graduate students, staff, alumni and community stakeholders to explore solutions to graduate student career preparation. The end goal is to provide humanities doctoral students with consistent and effective preparation for multiple career paths from the beginning of graduate study.
“I’ve been involved in the effort to expand employment opportunities for Ph.D.s since I founded Humanities Out There in 1997,” said Julia Reinhard Lupton, associate dean for research and director of Humanities Commons. “I am thrilled that we are able to deepen this conversation, especially in the academic departments, because that’s the only place where real change can happen.”
The UCI School of Humanities will build on its current and historic strengths in the area of innovative graduate education and career preparation. Earlier this year, the school received a Luce Foundation grant to expand its Humanities Out There Public Fellows pilot program that pairs Ph.D. students in the humanities with paid internships at nonprofit cultural organizations in Orange County, Calif. Last year, the school received a Mellon Foundation grant to restructure graduate education with an emphasis on expediting time to degree and providing teaching experience.
The UCI School of Humanities is currently putting together several working groups and expects to have a finalized plan by the fall of 2017.
Pictured left to right: Director and Associate Director of Humanities Commons, Julia Lupton and Amanda Swain