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Cooper-Du Bois Mentoring Program

Cooper-Du Bois Mentoring Program

Photo of Anna Cooper

Supporting Doctoral Study for Underrepresented Students interested in African American Literature, Language, and Culture and Black Digital and Public Research.

DATES: Nov. 13 – 14, 2020
LOCATION: Pennsylvania State University – Virtual Zoom Meeting

Application deadline: October 15, 2020

Join our next cohort of Cooper-Du Bois fellows and learn more about Penn State’s historic cluster hire of 13 faculty specializing in African American life and culture and its fall 2020 launch of the new Center for Black Digital Research.

Apply now for this three-day program to attend workshops on a variety of topics related to graduate studies and the admissions process, to learn about new directions in the fields of African American Photo of W.E.B. Du Boisliterary, cultural, and rhetorical studies, to hear about opportunities for Black digital and public research, and to meet with faculty, area, and program heads, as well as current and former graduate students and Cooper-Du Bois Fellows.

Session Topics Include:

  • Graduate Studies in African American Literature and Language
  • Opportunities for Digital and Public Research and Scholarship
  • The Graduate Application: Navigating the Process and Preparing Materials
  • Penn State’s Dual-Title PhD in African American and Diaspora Studies
  • Tips on Preparing the Statement of Purpose and Writing Sample
  • Participating in Project-based and/or Digital Research as a Graduate Student


Students Will Receive:

  • Programming and instructional materials
  • Reimbursement for Penn State Graduate School application fee (if applying)
  • $100 stipend after completion of all program workshops


Eligibility Requirements:

  • Applicants should be juniors, seniors, or Masters students currently enrolled in or having earned a degree from a U.S. college or university. Priority will be given to students interested in applying to graduate school in Winter 2020 for admission in Fall 2021.
  • Priority given to applicants from racial or ethnic groups under-represented in the discipline of English/Literary Studies and/or in the English graduate program at Penn State University.
  • Applicants must have a strong, demonstrated interest in pursuing African American literary, cultural and/or rhetorical studies and a dual-title degree with African American studies.
  • Applicants must be at least 18 years of age.


Required Materials:

  • a 1-2 page letter of application stating your academic/career goals and research interests;
  • an unofficial transcript;
  • and one letter of recommendation submitted by a faculty member.


To apply, complete the form linked below:

  • Link forthcoming


Note: once you submit your application an email will be sent directly to your letter writer requesting the recommendation be uploaded directly to the system. Please let your letter writer know in advance so they have their letter ready to submit when they receive the email request.

Letters of recommendation must be submitted by October 20, 2020.

For questions about the program or application, please email program coordinator, Sabrina Evans, at

This publication is available in alternative media on request. Penn State encourages qualified persons with disabilities to participate in its programs and activities. If you anticipate needing any type of accommodation or have questions about the physical access provided, please consult Tacee Sechler at or 814-863-2179 in advance of your participation or visit. Penn State is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer, and is committed to providing employment opportunities to all qualified applicants without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability or protected veteran status. U. Ed. LBS 16-358