Soji Cole

profile photo Soji Cole

PhD in Interdisciplinary Humanities

Program Entry Date: 2019

Supervisor Name Dr. David Fancy

Having been in the practice and scholarship of theatre arts for a while, I was in quest of other scholarly areas with which I can define and redefine the study and practice of theatre. I knew I could get what I desired in a core humanities study. I searched for universities round the world, and found that Brock did not only have a core humanities program, but one which combines the exegesis of different disciplines to process thoughts in the humanities. Brock is probably the only university in the world with a systematic clear-cut focus on the subject of interdisciplinary humanities at the doctoral level. I knew this was the university for me!

I came to Brock in the Fall of 2019. I came with my family from Nigeria, because my wife was picking up her graduate studies at the University of Toronto, and we couldn’t leave our girls back home. Have I enjoyed my experience so far at Brock? Absolutely Yes! The faculties are admirable and cordial, the environment is safe, the facilities are world-class, and the best of the experience is the liberal environment that the university offers! Faculties and students relate with little or no inhibition. The city of St. Catharines is fascinating to live in, and the people are kind and receptive to international students. We enjoy parts of the fun and serenity which the Niagara Falls close by draw every time.

Graduate education at Brock is tedious. There are high expectations, but along the way candidates get strengthened to cope and develop accordingly. My first term was shocking. I had to grapple with settling my family and coping with the workloads. The faculties are always available to give support, and there are many facilities that are open to help international students transition. In the second year of study, I was already equipped with advantages that will enable my future career. I am way better than when I came, in study and research in humanities, and in the general areas of scholarship.

My research focuses on exploring some ideological and aesthetic tenets of Indigenous Canadian drama. Within my first year at the program, I discovered a seeming gap in Indigenous scholarship in Canada, which I believe Indigenous drama could help to fill. My intention is to tease out how memory and history are used in Indigenous drama as political as well as narrative vehicles for understanding, reiterating, interpreting, and performing Indigenous kinship. I am being guided by committees which comprise of professors who have done research in the areas of drama, theatre, Indigenous studies and humanities. Within two years, I have benefited immensely from seminar interactions, intellectual engagements, classroom briefings, symposia, and conferences, which are usually ongoing activities at Brock.

My initial accommodation was a near disaster.  I got a place that was neither cozy nor cordial, and at an extreme rate. We spent less than a year before moving out to a better and less expensive accommodation facility. Future graduate students should get linked up with the Brock International center, Faculty of Graduate Studies or current graduate students for detailed information on accommodation at Brock and St. Catharines.

Apart from the intense academic activities, Brock University provides graduate students with arrays of leisure-type engagements to unwind and rejuvenate themselves. The city of St. Catharines and the Niagara Region provide as much fun as any city could. The safety and security of the environment is assuring.

Every day I look back and wonder what I would have missed if I didn’t get to Brock. Here, progress is made, and are evident in little time.  I still have more steps to go but, but having come this far, I feel on top of the world already. I believe that when I conclude my program at Brock, I would be going out to conquer the world with my new intellectual and research skill-sets. I think that is the feeling you have when you experience Brock. Come to Brock, and experience what it feels like to learn, develop and feel on top of the world!