Graduating MA candidate receives Notre Dame Kaneb Center's Outstanding Teaching Award and secures a PhD fellowship at prestigious institution

Author: Staff

We are thrilled to announce that our graduating MA candidate Peter Scharer has been awarded the Kaneb Center’s 2024 Outstanding Graduate Teaching Award for his exemplary contributions to language education. Recognized for his dedication, innovation, and commitment to student success, Peter fosters an inclusive and dynamic learning environment in every class that he teaches. Tailoring his methods to meet the diverse needs of his students, Peter employs interactive activities, multimedia resources, and personalized support to ensure their growth and engagement. His mentorship extends beyond the classroom, inspiring students to pursue language studies with enthusiasm and confidence. The University of Notre Dame’s Italian section celebrates Peter’s achievement, reaffirming its commitment to exceptional teaching and mentorship within its community.

Peter will earn his M.A. in Italian Studies in May 2024, with a thesis entitled “Petrarch's Succession of Crowds: Inheritance and Readership from Lyric Sequence to Testament.” He will then take up a prestigious PhD fellowship in Comparative Literature at Yale University for the upcoming 2024-25 academic year.

Before coming to the University of Notre Dame, Peter received a B.A. in Comparative Literature from Princeton University, where his undergraduate thesis investigated the reception of Giuseppe Mazzini's unificatory politics in the late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century Indian nationalisms of Surendranath Banerjea and Aurobindo Ghose. His current research looks into the sixteenth-century Italian prose translation published in Venice as Peregrinaggio di tre giovani figliuoli: this is a text whose uncited source has been established by nineteenth- and twentieth-century philologists to be Hasht-bihisht, a Persian masnavi (narrative poem) composed in the early fourteenth century by Amir Khusrau of Delhi. Broadly speaking, Peter Scharer is interested in how travel writings, political biographies and literary translations from the early modern and modern period disclose a persistent effort to define the Italian peninsula and Indian subcontinent in relation to one another.

Peter has expressed his gratitude for the preparation he received during his MA studies in Italian at Notre Dame: 

Notre Dame's MA program exposed me to a wide range of questions and methodologies in the study of Italian literature and in literary studies more broadly. I benefited from the program's expansive vision of what it means to study Italy; this materialized in summer funding I received for a project in India that looked into Italian translations of Persian poetry. The program has helped me feel more prepared and more confident as I begin a PhD program in Comparative Literature at Yale University, where I hope to expand the work on Persian and Italian material that I was able to begin at Notre Dame during my MA summer project.

We extend our heartfelt congratulations to Peter on his outstanding achievements and wish him continued success in his academic pursuits.

Originally published by Staff at on March 27, 2024.