Exploring Near Eastern Studies at Emory University

July 4, 2023
By AdmissionSight
Four students smiling at the camera while standing next to a college building.

Exploring Near Eastern Studies at Emory University

Emory University is renowned for its excellence in Near Eastern Studies, attracting students from all around the world. It is a leading institution with a rich tradition in this field, providing students with excellent career opportunities and research resources. This article will explore the reasons why Emory is a top choice for students interested in studying Near Eastern Studies, including its history, curriculum, professors, student life, research opportunities, and alumni success stories.

Why Emory University is a Leading Institution for Near Eastern Studies

Emory University’s Near Eastern Studies department is recognized for its comprehensive and interdisciplinary approach to education. The department offers a wide range of courses, study abroad programs, and research opportunities that provide students with a breadth of knowledge and hands-on experience in the field. Emory’s location in Atlanta, Georgia, also provides students with access to a diverse array of cultural and professional resources that enhance their studies and career prospects.

One of the unique aspects of Emory’s Near Eastern Studies department is its focus on contemporary issues in the region. Students have the opportunity to study current events and engage in discussions about the political, social, and economic challenges facing the Near East. This approach allows students to develop a nuanced understanding of the region and its complexities, which is essential for careers in fields such as diplomacy, international business, and journalism.

In addition to its academic offerings, Emory’s Near Eastern Studies department also hosts a variety of events and lectures throughout the year. These events bring together scholars, experts, and students to discuss topics related to the Near East and provide opportunities for networking and professional development. The department also has partnerships with organizations and institutions in the region, which offer students the chance to participate in internships and other experiential learning opportunities.

The Rich History of Near Eastern Studies at Emory University

Emory University has a long and rich history in Near Eastern Studies. The department originally began as the School of Hebrew and Near Eastern Studies in 1919 and has since expanded to include the study of Arabic, Persian, Turkish, and Islam. Throughout the years, the department has produced world-renowned scholars and has contributed significant research to the field.

One of the notable achievements of the Near Eastern Studies department at Emory University is the establishment of the Tam Institute for Jewish Studies in 1998. The institute has become a leading center for Jewish studies in the Southeastern United States, offering courses, lectures, and events that explore the history, culture, and religion of the Jewish people.

In addition to its academic contributions, the Near Eastern Studies department at Emory University has also played a role in promoting cultural understanding and dialogue. The department has organized numerous events and initiatives that bring together scholars, students, and community members from diverse backgrounds to discuss and learn about the Near East and its people. These efforts have helped to foster greater appreciation and respect for the region’s rich history and cultural heritage.

The Curriculum: Courses offered in Near Eastern Studies at Emory University

The Near Eastern Studies curriculum at Emory University offers a wide range of courses that cover various aspects of the field, including language, history, literature, religion, and politics. The curriculum is interdisciplinary and flexible, allowing students to tailor their studies to their interests and needs. Students can choose from courses like “Introduction to Near Eastern Studies,” “Islamic Mysticism,” or “Modern Middle Eastern Literature.”


a young muslim woman wearing a hijab and typing unto her laptop

In addition to these core courses, the Near Eastern Studies program also offers several specialized courses that delve deeper into specific topics. For example, students can take courses on the history of the Ottoman Empire, the politics of the Arab-Israeli conflict, or the literature of medieval Persia. These courses are taught by experts in their respective fields and provide students with a comprehensive understanding of the region.

Furthermore, the Near Eastern Studies program at Emory University offers several opportunities for students to engage with the Near Eastern community both on and off campus. Students can participate in study abroad programs in countries like Egypt, Israel, or Turkey, where they can immerse themselves in the language and culture of the region. Additionally, the program hosts several events throughout the year, including lectures, film screenings, and cultural festivals, which provide students with a chance to learn more about the Near East and connect with others who share their interests.

Student Life: What it’s like to study Near Eastern Studies at Emory University

Emory University’s vibrant campus life offers students the opportunity to engage and socialize with a diverse student body. The Near Eastern Studies department provides students with a supportive and inclusive community, offering extracurricular activities, events, and programs. The department also encourages students to participate in cultural events and festivals that showcase the diverse heritage of the region.

Excited middle eastern young man in casual sitting at workdesk, working on laptop at office

Additionally, the Near Eastern Studies department at Emory University offers students the chance to study abroad in the Middle East. This immersive experience allows students to gain a deeper understanding of the culture and language they are studying. The department also provides research opportunities for students to work alongside faculty members on projects related to the region. These experiences not only enhance students’ academic knowledge but also prepare them for future careers in fields such as international relations, diplomacy, and academia.

Research Opportunities and Resources for Near Eastern Studies Students at Emory University

Emory University provides its students with ample research opportunities in Near Eastern Studies. The university offers resources like the Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library, the Carlos Museum, and the Michael C. Carlos Center for Global Health. Additionally, the department offers various research grants and fellowships that allow students to pursue their research interests and develop their skills.

One of the unique research opportunities available to Near Eastern Studies students at Emory University is the chance to participate in archaeological excavations. The department has ongoing partnerships with archaeological projects in the Middle East, and students have the opportunity to join these projects and gain hands-on experience in the field. This not only provides valuable research experience but also allows students to immerse themselves in the culture and history of the region they are studying.

Study Abroad Programs for Near Eastern Studies Students at Emory University

Emory University provides students with a range of study abroad programs in the Near East. These programs offer students the opportunity to learn about the cultures, languages, and histories of the region in an immersive environment. Some programs include the Istanbul Study Abroad Program, the Arabic Language and Culture in Morocco program, and the Persian Language and Culture in Tajikistan program.

In addition to these programs, Emory University also offers a summer program in Jordan, where students can study the Arabic language and culture while living with a local host family. This program includes excursions to historical and cultural sites, such as Petra and the Dead Sea. Students also have the opportunity to participate in community service projects and engage with local organizations. The program is open to students of all levels of Arabic proficiency and provides a unique opportunity for students to deepen their understanding of the region.

Career Opportunities for Graduates of Near Eastern Studies at Emory University

Graduates of Emory University’s Near Eastern Studies program are well-equipped to pursue careers in various fields. Many alumni explore careers in academia, working as professors, researchers, and administrators at colleges and universities. Others choose to work in non-governmental organizations or government agencies that focus on the Near East. Some also pursue careers in journalism, writing, and publishing.

a female looking at the camera smiling

Additionally, graduates of the Near Eastern Studies program at Emory University have found success in the business world. With their knowledge of the Near East’s history, culture, and languages, they are well-suited for careers in international business, consulting, and diplomacy. Many alumni have gone on to work for multinational corporations, using their expertise to navigate cultural differences and negotiate deals.

Furthermore, some graduates have pursued careers in the arts, using their understanding of the Near East’s rich artistic traditions to create and curate exhibitions, performances, and installations. They have found success as museum curators, gallery owners, and independent artists, using their knowledge to bridge cultural divides and promote understanding.

Funding and Scholarships Available for Students in the Near Eastern Studies Department at Emory University

Emory University offers various funding and scholarship opportunities for students in the Near Eastern Studies department. This includes need-based scholarships, merit-based scholarships, and research grants. The university also participates in the Fulbright program, which provides students with the opportunity to conduct research and teach abroad.

In addition to these funding and scholarship opportunities, the Near Eastern Studies department at Emory University also offers several unique academic programs and resources. These include language immersion programs, study abroad opportunities, and access to a vast collection of primary source materials in the university’s library. Students in the department also have the opportunity to work closely with faculty members on research projects and to participate in academic conferences and events.

The Future of Near Eastern Studies at Emory University and Beyond

Emory University’s Near Eastern Studies department is committed to providing its students with a comprehensive and rigorous education that prepares them for successful careers in the field. The department continues to expand and evolve its curriculum to reflect the changing needs and challenges of the region. Emory also actively collaborates with other universities and institutions to promote research and scholarship in the field of Near Eastern Studies.

group of students studying

Looking towards the future, Emory University’s Near Eastern Studies department is dedicated to expanding its reach and impact beyond the university. The department plans to increase its engagement with local communities and organizations to promote greater understanding and appreciation of the Near East. Additionally, the department is exploring new partnerships with universities and institutions in the region to foster greater collaboration and exchange of ideas.

Furthermore, the department is committed to staying at the forefront of technological advancements in the field. Emory’s Near Eastern Studies faculty are actively incorporating digital tools and resources into their teaching and research, allowing students to gain valuable skills and experience in the use of cutting-edge technology. This emphasis on innovation and adaptation ensures that Emory’s Near Eastern Studies department will continue to be a leader in the field for years to come.

In conclusion, Emory University’s Near Eastern Studies department offers an outstanding education in the field, providing students with the knowledge, skills, and resources they need to pursue successful careers in various fields. Its comprehensive curriculum, expert faculty, research opportunities, and supportive community make it a top choice for students interested in the Near East.

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