Five Hunter students recently participated in the Stanford/Hunter Summer Research Exchange, a prestigious intercollegiate program for students who are considering graduate school in the Humanities, especially a PhD program.
Yukina Doi, Jacob Harvey, Jay Nelson, Phill M. Campbell, and Filippo Vanni spent eight weeks at Stanford's verdant campus in Palo Alto, Calif., where they developed advanced research projects with Stanford faculty mentors and learned graduate-school application strategies. They also bonded as a group and made fast friendships. (More about participants below.)
Stanford supplied more than $60,000 in scholarships for the students, who needed a cumulative GPA of at least 3.7 for consideration. The program is not new but had a hiatus during the pandemic. It’s a true exchange: A Stanford graduate student is teaching in the Hunter English Department this fall.
“The Summer Research Exchange Program with Stanford University is a life-changing opportunity for our students,” said Daniel Hurewitz, an associate professor of History and special adviser to the vice president on student success.
“The students not only love the California sunshine, they discover that they and their ideas are taken seriously by scholars outside of Hunter, which has an incredible impact on them,” Hurewitz continued. “Most of last summer’s cohort are off to terrific graduate programs this year, and I expect the same will be true of this year’s group. It’s just wonderful that we have this relationship with Stanford.”
The Office of Student Success, which Hurewitz directs, supports multiple cohort-based programs at the college that enrich students’ experiences with greater mentoring, special programming, and intellectual community.
Following are some attendees and their descriptions of their experiences:
Student: Jacob Harvey ’24, Philosophy and Classical Studies major
Plans: PhD in Philosophy
Project: Kant’s aesthetics and philosophy of religion.
Experience: “The CUNY/Stanford Summer program was an excellent opportunity to research by working closely with faculty and learning alongside similarly motivated students. My work at Stanford laid the groundwork for applying to graduate school, and helped to hone my own intellectual development.”
Student: Jay Nelson ’24, English major and Philosophy minor
Plans: PhD in American Studies
Project: “I researched gangsta rap in the 1980s as it relates to the performance of Black masculinity.”
Experience: “Extremely fulfilling. I’ve made lifelong friends with the other exchange students. Being in an environment where people are also academically minded provided me with the inspiration and support necessary to push through the rigor of the program.”
Student: Phill M. Campbell ’25, Media and Journalism major
Plans: PhD in American Studies
Project: A history of the 135th Street Library, a center of the Harlem Renaissance, and how it fits into the Black radical tradition.
Experience: “It allowed me to focus 100% on a topic of interest while having a cohort of students who supported me. The social experience was as instrumental as the academic because our group conversations on personal subjects heavily informed my scholarship.”
Student: Filippo Vanni ’23, Comparative Literature major
Project: A structural analysis of a character in Marcel Proust’s In Search of Lost Time.
Experience: “This intellectually rigorous and well-supported research experience, full of like-minded, searching students and closely supervised by faculty, brought to fruition an interesting project.”