Master of Arts in Liberal Studies

Varner Hall, Room 217
371 Varner Drive
Rochester, MI 48309-4485
(location map)
(248) 370-2154


Angela Kayi came to the MALS program after working in a professional environment.  She completed her undergraduate studies at Oakland University in 2000 and received a Bachelor of Art and Art History with a minor in Studio Art.  While a student, she also worked part-time as a Gallery Manager for a local non-profit art organization.  After graduation she worked as Program Manager at a large automotive supplier headquartered in Michigan.

Angela found the interdisciplinary nature of the MALS program and the multiple areas of exploration intellectually motivating. In her assistantship position she edited the newsletter "Spectrum" and assisted other MALS students with writing, organizing their graduate study work load, and computer skills. 

The MALS program was delighted to learn that she received recognition for her research in the form of a Provost's Research Award. "The proposal grew out of a thesis project and encouragement of y mentor and chair of my thesis committee Professor Tamara Machmut-Jhashi.  It is titled Creativity  Appearance and Sites of Authority and presents an interdisciplinary evaluation of artworks as texts that create a body of knowledge thematically relating to analytical theories of appearance and gender norms. I found the most challenging part of the process refining the thesis question and narrowing the parameters of the project. In addition to the guidance of Professor Machmut-Jhashi, my thesis committee includes sociology Professors Maines and Reger, both of whom have also devoted considerable time tow working with me in developing ideas and overseeing preparatory research. Once the formal thesis proposal was complete,k developing a summary for the application process was relatively straight forward." 

"The flexibility of the MALS program allowed me to really shape the coursework, combining different areas of study that I found fascinating. There are very few programs that allow you to explore very different disciplines and apply them to each other in this way. The program also exhibits very high standards and emphasizes the importance of effective oral and written communication," she says. "The application of these skills builds the ability to think critically and express your ideas effectively - essential skills for any career. The courses are topical and contemporary, which positively impacts future career opportunities for the program's graduates. It's a great opportunity to study with people who love what they're teaching," says Kayi. "The whole idea of coming back to OU and working with these faculty members was very appealing."

She is considering completing her MBA degree and entering the professional world again. 

If  you are interested in submitting a proposal for this prestigious award, please check the OU website under "Grants, Contracts, and Sponsored Research" for details.