Where do our students go after OHMA?

Here is a list of employers who have hired graduates from OHMA within the past five years:

  • 1947 Partition Archive
  • African Look Book
  • Apollo Theater
  • Brafton
  • Brooklyn Historical Society
  • California State University, Monterrey Bay
  • California State University, Fresno
  • Child Mind Institute
  • Christensen Fund
  • Columbia University Center for Oral History Research
  • Columbia University School of Social Work
  • Corner News Media
  • Council of Smaller Enterprise
  • David J. Sencer Center for Disease Control Museum
  • Center for Disease Control Museum
  • Ditmas Park Corner
  • Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation
  • Groundswell: Oral History for Social Change
  • Just Place: Organizing Stories
  • Kentucky Oral History Commission
  • Los Angeles County Museum of Art
  • Moving Stories
  • Museum of Modern Art
  • Nantucket Historical Association
  • Oral History Collective
  • Open Society Foundations
  • Rural Organizing Project
  • Stanford Historical Society
  • St. Luke’s Hospital
  • Temple University Institute on Disabilities
  • The Museum On Site
  • The New School for Drama
  • Towards Independent Living and Learning
  • University of California, Berkeley Oral History Center
  • University of California, Riverside
  • University of California, Santa Cruz Regional History Project
  • Whitney Museum
  • Wisconsin Veterans Museum
  • World Vision International
  • West Point Center for Oral History

And here are our ongoing graduate school placements:

  • American University, Public History
  • Columbia University Teachers College, History and Education
  • Columbia University, Journalism School, Communications
  • Michigan State University, African-American Studies
  • Northwestern Law, International Human Rights
  • Rutgers University, American Studies
  • Rutgers University, History
  • San Francisco State University, Playwriting  
  • University of Chicago, Anthropology
  • University of Michigan, American Culture
  • Université de Montréal, Medical School
  • University of Oklahoma, Anthropology
  • University of Southern California, American Studies and Ethnicity

 

How can I work with OHMA students and alumni?

We now have two structures in place for pairing students with partner organizations or projects:

1. In the fall, for their oral history Fieldwork class, students can be paired with a partner organization to do three interviews and some minimal post-interview processing or editing.

2. Students can do internships, for or not for course credit, paid or unpaid, in which they work in a more extended way with a partner organization. This can involve work on any part of the oral history process, from project design and planning to curation. There must be a substantial element of training or mentoring by the host. This can happen year-round.

Similarly, our alumni can be hired for internships, full-time jobs, oral history interviews, project consultations, workshop lectures, etc.

We take applications from potential partners for both of these programs each summer. Please contact OHMA Co-Director Amy Starecheski (aas39@columbia.edu) for more information.

HOW LONG SHOULD THE PERSONAL STATEMENT BE?

Generally speaking, your personal statement can be anywhere from 500 to 1500 words. But 500 is usually too few for us to understand you and 1500 is a little much. 1000 words is just right.

In terms of content, we want to know how your experience or life views are unique in a way that will help others learn about Oral History and what you need from an Oral History program. We also want to know that our program can meet your needs and future goals. How will your experience and background contribute to the program? This is important as we're a cohort-based program and we rely heavily on a diverse student body to make seminar courses both interesting and innovative.

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IS IT POSSIBLE TO ATTEND THE PROGRAM PART-TIME?

Due to the intensive curriculum, we highly recommend that students attend full-time; however, it is possible to attend part-time. Part-time students usually finish the program in 2 to 2.5 years. If a student is planning on attending part-time, s/he must meet with the Program Coordinator to set up a long-term schedule upon acceptance to the program. Please also note that most of the required courses are only offered during the daytime.


 

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HOW MANY STUDENTS DO YOU ADMIT?

We don't have a set number of students we admit. Each year the number varies based on the strength of the applications. We evaluate each application carefully and completely before making this decision. We are a small program growing each year as the number of quality applications has increased.


 

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SHOULD I HAVE A PLAN OF STUDY AND AN ADVISER IN MIND?

Some students come in with a specific plan of study, but some do not. After your first month of classes, you will probably have a much clearer idea of what you want to research and with whom you want to work. In the meantime, as you prepare your application, we recommend reading about the bios of professors at Columbia whose work interests you.


 

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CAN I APPLY TO A MA IN ANOTHER DISCIPLINE AND OHMA AT THE SAME TIME?

Columbia GSAS now permits applicants to be reviewed by a second program if they do not receive an offer of admission from their first choice program, with the following restrictions:

  • All second choices are free-standing Masters of Arts programs.
  • Not all programs permit a second choice.
  • Columbia GSAS cannot guarantee that an application will receive a second review. Review is contingent upon deadline and space availability in the second program.
  • Selection of a second review does not affect the review of your application by the program of your first choice.
  • You must select the additional review option at the time of submission of your application; you CANNOT request this option after the application has been submitted.
  • Applicants must upload a separate Statement of Academic Purpose and submit any extra supporting materials required for the second program.  Transcripts, letters and test scores should only be submitted once. However, if your second program requires a writing sample you are required to upload a second writing sample.
  • Applicants applying for the Spring Term are not eligible.
  • Applicants will be able to view and opt for a second choice (if applicable) after selecting their first choice. Do not submit a second application.
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HAVE YOU RECEIVED MY ADMISSIONS MATERIALS?

When you submit your application, you will receive a confirmation which means that your application has been received. There are also two ways to check on your application.

The first is to use the tracking number given to you when you submitted the application online. If this shows you have materials missing that you are sure you've submitted, please contact the GSAS Admissions Office directly, as they receive all materials first before sending them to departments. GSAS Admissions can be reached by calling (212) 854-8903, or emailing gsas-admit@columbia.edu.

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IS OHMA LINKED TO ANY PHD PROGRAMS?

OHMA is a terminal MA program, which means that it does not feed directly into any other programs. This is a plus for our students as we are able to focus on them as Masters students without other distractions. Several of our students have choose to continue on in their graduate study by applying to PhD programs.

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