PhD in Cultural Studies

David Zeglen

David Zeglen


Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada

What is your favorite part about being a Mason student?

I've met some incredibly talented and interesting people during my time here. My favorite part of being a student at Mason has been the friendships and intellectual affinities I've developed with my colleagues.

What is your favorite part about your degree program?

The course offerings are generally excellent and offer a range of options for students interested in cultural studies. The program also runs a colloquium series every academic year that brings in a variety of different speakers who are all doing research on a given theme. I've found the colloquium to be a great opportunity to see what other scholars are working on. Additionally, colloquium provides a chance for students to meet and network with established scholars. As part of my funding, the program also gives me classes to teach. Although teaching while being a student can be challenging, building up teaching experience is invaluable and becomes an important asset if you want to work in academia after you graduate. 

What is the one part of your degree program that has had the most impact on you?

The cultural studies faculty have had an immense impact on my overall intellectual development. Each faculty member has pushed my thinking in unexpected and provocative directions, and I am deeply grateful for their patience, guidance, and knowledge during my time in the program. They are truly exceptional teachers and make the program such a rewarding and stimulating experience.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

I first hope to be finished my dissertation. Ideally, I'd like to have permanent university employment that allows me to teach and do research, so I'd like to be in a tenure-track faculty position in a cultural studies or global studies department. However, tenure-track positions are becoming increasingly rare, so I'm also trying to think about other labor markets such as public foundations and think tanks.