Your application should contain the following five items:
- An academic CV.
- A letter of support from a faculty member.
- A letter addressing your abilities or potential abilities to work as partner with a community organization or work experience with public engagement.
- An email from the applicant’s Director of Graduate Studies.
- Responses to four application questions.
All items are due October 8 by 5:00 pm.
Explanation of Application Items
- Your academic CV. This should be no longer than 2 pages and should include a) your projected date of graduation and your final degree; b) a list of academic accomplishments, including presentations, publications, exhibits, and teaching assignments, and c) your current contact information (mailing address, phone, and email), academic department, and advisor’s name. Send your CV as a PDF to email@example.com. Be sure your name and email address appear at the top of the first page.
- A confidential letter of support from a faculty member. This should address: a) your standing in your graduate program, b) the value of the Graduate Institute to your present and future teaching and research, and c) your potential for collaborative, publicly engaged teaching and/or scholarship. [For a definition of public scholarship, see below.] Your faculty member should email this letter directly to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- A confidential letter that addresses your abilities or potential abilities to work as partner with a community organization or work experience with public engagement. Consider asking a faculty member, a mentor, or a supervisor in a volunteer position to address: a) the viability of your proposed project, b) your potential to bring this project to fruition, and c) your ability to work with a community partner. Please have this letter emailed directly to email@example.com.
- An email from the Director of Graduate Studies from your home department stating the following: “NAME OF APPLICANT is in good standing in our department. If he/she is accepted, I support his/her participation in the Obermann Graduate Institute in January 2014.” This statement - no more and no less - should be emailed by your Director to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Responses to the four questions below. Your responses should be no longer than 200 words per question. Send your responses as a PDF to email@example.com. Be sure that your name and address are at the top of the page.
- Tell us about your past involvement as a student, teacher, and/or scholar with publicly engaged scholarship, volunteerism, service learning, or community activism. What skills have you built in these areas?
- Describe a project that you would like to develop further that involves teaching or scholarship and community engagement. Include any conversations you’ve had with potential partners or other research or planning you’ve done to learn about the viability of such a project.
- Explain how your background and experiences relate to your interests in publicly engaged scholarship. We are particularly interested in how you could bring a unique and diverse perspective to the Institute.
- Explain how participation in the Obermann Graduate Institute will benefit you personally and how it will benefit The University of Iowa and/or a scholarly community of which you are a member.
Note: It may prove useful to you and those writing letters on your behalf to consider this three-part definition of public scholarship from Imagining America, a coalition organization to which the Obermann Center actively belongs:
- Public scholarship is scholarly or creative work integral to a faculty member’s academic area. It is jointly planned, carried out, and reflected on by co-equal university and community partners. And it yields one or more public good products.
- Subject to these three conditions, public scholarship may encompass artistic, design, historical, and critical work that contributes to public discourse and the formation of robust rubrics. It may also include disciplinary or interdisciplinary efforts to advance public engagement in higher education itself and reflection and research on the import of such efforts.
- Public good products may take diverse and plural forms, including but not limited to: peer-reviewed individual or co-authored publications; other forms of writing and publication; presentations at academic and non-academic conferences and meetings; oral histories or ethnographies; interviews with or reflections by participants; program development; performances, exhibitions, installations, murals, or festivals; new K-16 curriculum, site designs or plans for ‘cultural corridors,’ and other place-making work; and policy recommendations.