Exchange Program

Over the past several years, universities all across the world have been establishing new programs in United States History.  This process, what a recent president of the American Historical Association called the “internationalization of American history,” has brought tremendous vitality to the field.  International scholars have raised new perspectives and questions, overseas programs have contributed new resources to the study of American politics and culture, and these new programs have developed a pool of prospective students for U.S. graduate programs.  Under the leadership of Anthony Badger, Mellon Professor of History and Master of Clare College, Cambridge University has moved to the forefront in this endeavor, creating one of the most vital and prestigious U.S. history programs outside the United States.

Collaboration with Cambridge University offers Boston University and its students the unprecedented opportunity to seize a leading role in this process, to participate in, learn from, contribute to and shape the international conversation that is redefining the field.

Boston University

2018: Cari Babitzke

2017: Matthew Lavallee

2016: Dave Shorten

2014-2015: Robert Shimp, Christina Carrick

2013-2014: Katie Moore, Amy Noel Ellison

2012-2013: Andrew David

2011-2012: Zach Fredman

2010-2011: Ellen Horrow, Jonathan Koefed

2009-2010: David Mislin

2008-2009: Francois Lalonde

2007-2008: Katie Cramer Brownell

2006-2007: David Atkinson

Cambridge University

2019: Huw Batts

2017: Ruth Lawlor

2016: Oliver Finnegan

2014-2015: Kate Jernigan, Charlie Jeffries

2013-2014: Will Riddington, Moses Tannenbaum

2012-2013: Rebecca Wagner, Benjamin Park

2011-2012: Asa McKercher

2010-2011: Olivia Sohns, Kristal Enter

2009-2010: Ruth Martin, Amy Renton

2008-2009: Sam James, Emily Floeck

2007-2008: Clemens Häusler, Charlotte Carrington

2006-2007: Robin Vandome


“The Boston-Cambridge graduate exchange program was one of the most professionally and personally enriching experiences of my graduate student career. The exchange provided opportunities to forge relationships with colleagues in the UK, and facilitated research in British archives that constitute the core of my forthcoming book. This was quite simply an invaluable experience.” ~David Atkinson, Assistant Professor, Purdue University


“I had an opportunity to participate in the BU-Cambridge Exchange program in the Spring 2008 semester.  At the time, I was developing my dissertation proposal, and took full advantage of some amazing opportunities available with this program.  As a fellow, I also attended a graduate workshop and a weekly American history seminar series during which I met some top American historians.  Not only did I receive incredible feedback on my work, but as a fellow I expanded my scholarly network with my relationships forged with other graduate students in the Cambridge program, and also with the visiting scholars who came through Clare College with the American history workshop.  In particular, I met Lizbeth Cohen there, and have stayed in touch with her since this time, and also met a prominent British scholar in my specific field in Hollywood and politics, Ian Scott, who ultimately served as a second reader on my dissertation committee.  The graduate students in the Cambridge doctoral program and I developed a plan to start an annual graduate student conference that would afford us annual opportunities to strengthen and expand these scholarly networks that had proven so beneficial for all of us during the semester.  Now in its sixth year, this conference still attracts graduate students from Cambridge and other UK universities and has helped establish BU’s reputation as a leader in American political history initiatives.  As a fellow, I traveled to conferences across the UK and Europe, and rather than reading books about how to “internationalize” American history, I was actively doing it.  Lastly, this fellowship program has become a way to attract some of the brightest graduate students for both Cambridge and BU, and I frequently share my experiences and rewards of this program with potential doctoral candidates. This fellowship program has truly elevated the graduate program at both institutions, and has been integral to establishing BU and Cambridge as international hubs in studying American political history.” ~Kathryn Brownell, Assistant Professor, Purdue University

katie brownell

“I was fortunate enough be involved in the BU exchange program in the Spring semester of 2008. As a scholar of early New England history, being based in Boston for a semester meant that I could complete all of my doctoral archival work. In addition, I got to work with world-renowned scholars at BU, in particular making the connection with Dr. Brendan McConville was wonderful. Dr. McConville and I met again recently at the JCB library in Providence, and without the BU exchange program I would not have made this connection. In addition, I have made life-long personal and professional friends. A number of BU students and I have put together
panels at conferences as a result of the exchange program, and one BU student will actually be bridesmaid at my wedding this summer. In addition, I got to present my research at the prestigious US history seminar at BU, and the feedback I received was very useful. In addition, when I returned to Cambridge after the program, I worked closely with scholars who came over from BU. When I was on the job market, the exchange program really helped me stand out and sell myself. Without a doubt, the exchange program played a part in my securing my current tenure track position at Roger Williams University in Rhode Island. I really do hope this wonderful program continues to benefit future students.” ~Charlotte Carrington, Assistant Professor of Early American History, Roger Williams University


“I was the inaugural Boston-Cambridge exchange student, spending about nine months at Boston University from September 2006 until May 2007. During this time I completed extensive research trips in the Boston area (at Boston University itself, using the excellent library there largely for secondary sources, but also at the Houghton Library, the Harvard University Archives, and the Museum of Comparative Biology library, all at Harvard), as well as further afield (I also took essential trips to the American Philosophical Society library in Philadelphia, the American Museum of Natural History and Columbia University in New York, and the University archives at Chicago). This scale and range of doctoral research would simply not have been possible without the extended spell in the US allowed by the Boston-Cambridge exchange program, and it has fed in not only to my PhD dissertation, but also to further post-doctoral research projects (including the writing-up of a book manuscript based on the doctoral research as a Mellon fellow at the New-York Historical Society in 2012-13). In addition to the opportunities for primary research, the exchange program also introduced me to a wider network of scholars that continues to be a massively valuable resource in itself: I have since been in touch with Sam Deese and Katie Cramer Brownell, among others from BU’s doctoral program, about further research projects and conferences. Finally, the exchange program was wonderfully administered for a Cambridge student spending time in Boston. The visa administration as well as accommodation was all taken care of incredibly well by BU, and this in itself made the whole experience easier and more productive. I am delighted to recommend the continuation of this important scholarly exchange program in the strongest possible terms!” ~Robin Vandome, Lecturer in Intellectual History, University of Nottingham


“In the fall term of 2007, I participated in the program as Cambridge’s exchange scholar at BU. I used my four months in the United States for some extended archival research at the John F. Kennedy Library, Boston, and in three other cities across the country. Throughout this time, the BU History Department provided me with the kind of home base that makes research abroad both more effective and more enjoyable.” ~Clemens Häusler, Ph.D., Cambridge University