Sophie Priebbenow
Sophie Priebbenow

Sophie had just finished her second year of a BA/Law program with an extended major in History, when she scored a summer research scholarship. Here is what she had to say about her experience: 

What’s the scholarship?

The scholarship is with the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities, and it’s an opportunity for me to create a 6000 word research project of my choosing, which for me is a history project based in seventeenth-century England. The scholarship is also there for me to develop my research skills and gain more experience in something of an office environment, and be able to help out some of the scholars there while I’m at it.

How did you hear about it and what was the application process like?

I actually heard about it from my lecturer in a history course I did in the first semester of my second year, as she (Karin Sellberg) is one of the academics who works in IASH. The application was due at the end of August, so I thought up a couple ideas about projects I might like to do, and then I went to see Karin, who helped me map things out a bit more. I did up a proposal and sent it to IASH, and once it was approved, I completed a form on StudentHub to apply properly. It was actually an extremely straightforward application process and it didn’t interfere with my studies at all.

What are your responsibilities?

The priority while I’m working on my project at IASH is, of course, my project itself, and researching and doing the writing for that. I’ve also been given a few extra duties to do in the next couple months like putting some sources into EndNote for one of the academics, as well as transcribing some photocopied primary sources to save him the trouble.

What does this opportunity mean for you? What do you think you’ll get out of it?

Well, I applied for this project principally because I was really devoted to my idea and I couldn’t wait to see it come to fruition in that kind of real research environment. It’s also a lot about work experience – this is the closest thing to working in an office that I’ve done, and I really love it. So I guess it is mostly about work experience, but I’m also developing and honing other skills in research/transcription/etc that I hope to be able to utilise in my career one day.