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Sperling Studentship for doctoral study at Cambridge
An opportunity for classes of ’95 to ’02

John Sperling ‘48, founder of the University of Phoenix and an alumnus of both Reed College and King’s College of Cambridge University, has committed more than $1 million to support Reed graduates in the pursuit of a three-year doctoral degree at Cambridge. Sperling, whose degree from Reed was in history, earned a master’s degree in political history at the University of California–Berkeley and a Ph.D. in economic history from Cambridge University on a fellowship from the University of California.

Reed graduates from 1995 to 2002 (all classes graduated since the inception of the award) are eligible to apply for the Sperling Studentship through Reed’s Committee on Fellowships and Awards. Reed may nominate up to three ranked candidates to King’s College. The nominees then apply directly to their chosen doctoral programs. Upon admittance to his or her program, one nominee is awarded the studentship, with the offer being made according to the order of the original ranking.

Applications will be considered in all graduate fields at Cambridge University except medicine. These three-year doctoral programs require superior academic training and performance, and students are expected to work closely with a specific tutor and to move quickly into the chosen area of research. Most of the programs, with the exception of some in the sciences, mathematics, and the Judge Institute of Management, require a master’s degree for admission; thus a Reed graduate who does not already have graduate experience comparable to a master’s degree should be cautioned about the suitability of this competition. In addition, it is virtually impossible for an applicant to be admitted to a Cambridge doctoral program without the explicit endorsement of the student’s potential adviser; therefore, applicants should be well informed about the program to which they are applying, and in contact with the future adviser, before submitting the internal application.

The 1997 recipient of the Sperling Studentship was Dorthea Sartain ’95, who received a master’s degree in history at the University of Minnesota and is completing a degree in history at Cambridge; the 2001 recipient was Michelle Schaffer ’99, who is working on a doctorate in the Graduate School of Biological, Medical, and Veterinary Science.

The 2002–03 internal application process will take place in the fall semester; more information is available on Reed’s fellowships and awards web page (with links to the relevant Cambridge University sites), and from the chair of the committee, Virginia Hancock ’62 (virginia.hancock @reed.edu). End of Article

 

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