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Postgraduate student perspectives

Caterina Sinibaldi: PhD Italian Studies

Simone Brioni: PhD candidate Italian Studies

Simone BrioniAfter graduating in American Literature at the Università di Trento, I applied for a scholarship at the University of Warwick. I chose Warwick because Italian Studies has a great reputation for research in migrant writings and translation studies, and I wanted to write a PhD thesis on post-colonial Italian literature. While I was writing my proposal, I came to Warwick for a conference and had the chance to speak to other PhD students about their research and academic life. They gave me a brilliant response and encouraged me to apply. I think their enthusiastic description was really accurate. I like the atmosphere in the Department – everyone is very friendly. I would definitely recommend Italian Studies as a place to study. It is an amazing experience for me to be here, and I have gained the experience and the knowledge necessary for my future plans.

Annunziata Videtta: PhD, Italian

Annunziata VidettaStudying within Italian Studies has allowed me to contribute to a department led by research excellence. My supervisors have provided me with the guidance and advice I need to complete each phase of my PhD. The University provides excellent resources such as the Wolfson Research Exchange – a dedicated space within the library with seminar rooms and work areas where researchers across the university can discuss their research projects and network with each other. I have also been able to take advantage of dedicated training events for PhD students, which have helped me to hone my research skills and become a better researcher. Warwick is a place where I enjoy being a member of the research community on both a departmental and University-wide level.

David Lees: PhD, French Studies

David LeesHaving completed my undergraduate degree in French Studies with Italian at Warwick in 2009, I obtained funding from the Department to study for an MA. I became so interested in my dissertation subject that I decided to pursue my research at PhD level. I was fortunate to receive departmental funding, which has been invaluable since starting my thesis in October 2010, and has also enabled me to get very enjoyable teaching experience.

The excellent quality of the Department's research and the approachable nature of the staff were especially appealing when I was considering applying for a PhD and it is very fulfilling to be part of such a dynamic and friendly group of postgraduate researchers. I have been able to organise an increased number of postgraduate events, including the first French postgraduate conference. The facilities open to the Department – like the Transnational Resources Centre – are first-rate.

I hope to harness the skills that I have acquired during my PhD to secure an academic job. The opportunities open to me here, including teaching, organising conferences and travelling to France for archival research, have made me feel more confident in my pursuit of this goal.

Brian Haman: PhD, German Studies

Brian HamanAmong the many reasons for choosing Warwick, my decision was influenced by the enthusiastic recommendation of an academic mentor back home in New York City. After completing my Master's in English Literature (with Distinction) at Warwick, the University offered me a Warwick Postgraduate Research Scholarship to pursue doctoral research in German Studies. The opportunity has proven invaluable both intellectually and personally.

During my time at Warwick, I have been awarded numerous external grants in support of my research, including a prestigious DAAD Research Grant to Germany. I have presented conference papers in the UK, Europe, and the US. Within the University, there are innumerable stimulating and challenging events and programmes, from (inter) departmental symposia and seminars with leading British scholars to more informal reading groups run by the postgraduate community. In addition to professional development and training courses, the University offers superior facilities and support for both undergraduate and postgraduate students. And the sheer diversity of the University's student body is a true asset; I have made friends with people from the UK, Europe, the Middle East, Asia and North America.

The excellent supervision and research opportunities experienced at Warwick have laid a solid foundation for my academic career.

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