Marjorie Wade, loyal Sacramento Branch member and professor of World Languages and Literatures at California State University, Sacramento, recently shared how receiving a Fellowship from AAUW allowed her to complete her Ph.D. dissertation.
Born in Kentucky into a military family, she lived in a number of different locations, including seven years in Germany as her father completed two tours of duty there. When time for another move arrived, her father suggested that she apply for college even though high school graduation was still a year away.
Dr. Wade was accepted at the College of William and Mary in Virginia with the provision that the scores on her entrance exams were sufficient. She went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in European history at William and Mary. After working for the federal government for four years, she returned to academia and enrolled at Duke University to earn her master’s degree in German. She then moved to Ann Arbor, MI., to complete a Ph.D. at the University of Michigan in Germanic Languages and Literatures.
At this point, needing financial support to do research for her dissertation, Dr. Wade applied for an AAUW fellowship as well as a Fulbright fellowship. When both organizations were so generous as to award her grants, AAUW worked with her to adjust their dollar amount so she could accept both awards. The awards enabled her to spend two years in Vienna, Austria to complete her research on the Holy Roman Emperor, Maximillian I (1493-1519). She was enthusiastic about the opportunity she had to study at the University of Vienna and have access to the Österreichische Nationalbibliothek, which houses Maximillian’s richly illustrated Weisskunig. The Emperor’s autobiographical work is a treasured resource of art, history and literature.
After receiving her Ph.D., Dr. Wade joined the German faculty at CSUS, where she teaches classes in German language, literature and history.
Dr. Wade says she is still extremely grateful to AAUW for her grant and for being so accommodating with their fellowship award that she could also keep the Fulbright, which provided many connections abroad. In fact, she very recently returned from the 65th Anniversary celebration in Vienna of the Fulbright exchange program in Austria.