I am very pleased to announce that I have accepted a position in a PhD program at the University of Göttingen (Georg-August-Universität), in Göttingen, Germany. I’ll be working on Dr. Nathan MacDonald’s recently formed Sofja-Kovaleskaja Research Team, studying “Unity and Diversity in Early Jewish Monotheisms” in the Persian period. Barring any problems with visas or the like (about which we’d appreciate prayer!), we plan to move in early September and begin the program in October.
This is an Old Testament program, which caused me some hesitation at first–my M.A. thesis is on the Gospel of John–but I have been research assistant to an OT scholar, and teaching on Job this past November really solidified my love for the richness of the Hebrew Bible. My research proposal focused on the presentation of “monotheism” in the book of Job, though there is some possibility of instead working in the later prophets (e.g. Zechariah-Malachi). Regardless I am looking forward to expanding my horizons beyond the New Testament.
I can’t even express how excited I am by this opportunity. I’ve wanted to visit Europe for as long as I can remember, so the chance to do my PhD there, studying a subject that fascinates me, at one of Europe’s foremost universities, with a generous stipend and funded annual trips back to the US for SBL, is about as good as it gets. And while I’ll obviously have to learn to speak (rather than just read) German, I’ll be able to write my dissertation in English, which is a huge plus.
Most of all, however, it is the people who really drew me to this program. I first learned of the opportunity through one of the Profs here at Trinity, who was at Durham with Dr. MacDonald and not only encouraged me to apply but also facilitated contact for me. Since then, I have had the opportunity to interact with Dr. MacDonald and the post-docs on his team (especially Dr. Izaak de Hulster) quite a bit at SBL New Orleans and after, and they are all wonderful people and excellent scholars. More than any of the details of the program itself, it is the opportunity to work with such a great group of people that really draws me to Göttingen.