The meeting today with the professor from UNC went well, but he said something that...scared me a bit. He said that over 120 people applied for the graduate program at UNC for religious studies, 7 were accepted, 1 in my field. Wow. 1?! I've gotten the same response from Yale (in significantly less nice terms. I basically felt like Yale was saying, "You have a snowball's chance in hell of getting in here. Apply elsewhere....but, we'll take your application money if you want to throw it away.")
So, I need to start gathering together school's that are perhaps 2nd tier. Backup schools, I suppose, just in case I don't get in to my top-choice schools, like Duke (although I've been reading some Joel Osteen and naming and proclaiming a Ph.D from Duke, so I think I'm in). What I'm looking for:
1) A good New Testament staff/scholar - My particular interests are in the historical transmission of the NT text, patristic hermeneutics, and early christian history.
2) A program with pretty significant funding - I've worked 40+ hrs my entire undergraduate career much to the chagrin of my GPA (the most scholarship money a single white male can get from Southeastern is 300 dollars a semester.....no FAFSA is accepted). I would actually rather the funding be based on being a TA or something along those lines. I'm willing to grade papers until my hand falls off if the school's willing to help me out. But I'd like to have a chance to just be a student. I know this sounds odd...when most people my age are concerned with partying and chasing down people of the opposite sex, all I want to do is study and research. Unfortunately, having won the genetic lottery, I'm constantly plagued by the ladies chasing me. It ain't easy being pretty.