There is a vibrant intellectual community at the Medieval Institute and Western Michigan University. The Institute sponsors visiting lecturers and a variety of events during the year, including a fall reception for all affiliated faculty and students. There are numerous opportunities for both formal and informal interaction on campus, including meeting in study spaces in the Rawlinson Center Library, participating in the collegial Medieval Research Group or becoming a member of the Goliardic Society, which is a group of Medieval Institute students and other students interested in medieval studies. There are also opportunities to meet with other medievalists at the Newberry Library in Chicago and the International Congress on Medieval Studies.
The Goliardic Society is a social organization of the graduate students of the Medieval Institute. The mission of the society is to facilitate camaraderie among students, faculty and friends while enhancing the academic environment of the institute through various donations, volunteer work and scholarly activities. Follow the Goliardic Society on Twitter!
Medieval Research Group
The Medieval Research Group is a voluntary association of medieval studies students, staff and affiliated faculty to share research and foster collegiality. It is open to graduate students in other departments who share interests in medieval studies. It meets occasionally during term time, sometimes on campus and sometimes off campus depending on the nature of the event. Members are encouraged to present research in progress or drafts of conference papers for feedback. There are also occasional workshops on topics such as writing an abstract or paper proposal. Meetings are listed on the News and Events page.
The Rawlinson Center, a research center under the aegis of the Medieval Institute, fosters teaching and research in the culture and history of early medieval England and in the broader field of manuscript studies. The Center maintains a reference library with holdings of over 6,000 books, offprints and electronic resources that medieval studies students may use for research and study during business hours.
The Center also sponsors sessions at the annual International Congress on Medieval Studies Medieval Studies, offers the Paul E. Szarmach Prize for a first peer-reviewed article on a topic in the culture and history of early medieval England and publishes a monograph series called Publications of the Richard Rawlinson Center with Medieval Institute Publications.
Additionally, students who have successfully completed at least 12 graduate-level credits of coursework in the master's program in medieval studies are eligible to apply for the Center's Tashjian Study Fellowship, which provides support for a student who has demonstrated interest in the culture and history of early medieval England or manuscript research to conduct research at a major library, take appropriate courses in a recognized program or pursue an organized plan of study or travel during the summer of any given year.
International Congress on Medieval Studies
Hosted by the Medieval Institute at Western Michigan University, the International Congress on Medieval Studies is an annual gathering of thousands of scholars interested in medieval studies. The Congress embraces the study of all aspects of Middle Ages, extending to into late antiquity and the early modern periods, including—but not limited to—history, language, literature, linguistics, art, archaeology, religion, science, medicine, music, drama, philosophy, gender, sexuality, mysticism and technology, as well as medievalism.
Newberry Library Center for Renaissance Studies Consortium
The Center for Renaissance Studies at the Newberry Library in Chicago is a research center promoting the study of medieval, Renaissance and early modern studies, particularly through the use of the Newberry's impressive collection of holdings related to these topics. The Center also offers a variety of scholarly programs and events throughout the year and works with a consortium of universities all over the world. Western Michigan University is a member of this consortium through the Medieval Institute, and faculty, staff and graduate students are eligible to apply for a Newberry Renaissance Consortium Grant to receive travel funding to participate in Center for Renaissance Studies programs or to conduct research at the Newberry Library.