Robert Z., History (Academia)
Alumni Advisor
Major:BA History
Grad Year:1994
Career Sector:Higher Education
Graduate Degree:MA History, PhD History, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Current Job Title:Associate Professor of History
Current Employer:Le Moyne College

What was your career path that led you to your current position?

I entered graduate school immediately upon completely my undergraduate degree at UD. After ten years of coursework, research, writing, and the study of several foreign languages I completed my PhD in Ottoman history. While writing my dissertation I began applying for Middle East history teaching positions at universities throughout the United States. My first tenure-track position was in the History Department at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. I accepted my present position after teaching at IUP for three years since I wanted to not only live in a more urban area but also desired to teach at a Catholic liberal arts college.

What kind of credentials, education, training, prior experience are needed?

As an Ottoman historian, I am expected to have knowledge of numerous languages associated with the Ottoman Empire. At UD I took French for Reading Knowledge my senior year to make me a more viable candidate for graduate work in history (I had taken Spanish to fulfill the foreign language requirement as a Freshman). I also arranged to begin studying Modern Turkish during the summer between ending undergrad studies and beginning my grad studies. To enhance my language knowledge I spent a year studying both Modern and Ottoman Turkish in Turkey. Additionally, I picked up Serbo-Croatian while a grad student. That being said the acquisition of foreign languages is essential for graduate students in history. This is true for many other disciplines as well. Graduate schools expect students to come in with foreign language proficiency. As a professor of history, it is expected that one possesses a PhD, but, now more than ever, it is expected that the PhD is from a top graduate program. By this, I mean a program that is at least in the top twenty in the chosen field of study.

How was your major and/or your degree from UD related to your current work?

At UD I majored in history, and as a professor of history, I continue to work in that field. Although when I attended UD there were no classes offered that dealt with my chosen field of history, the Ottoman Empire, the instruction I received in research methods, analytical reading, and writing were essential to my future success.

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