In October 1989 the Department of History announced a new multi-year fellowship program for graduate students in order to professionalize graduate education and recruit teaching assistants for fields such as Latin American, Soviet and Japanese history. Student enrollment in courses in these topics had grown after the university introduced a “major cultures” requirement as part of the undergraduate curriculum. Designing graduate education in the history department was a process long in the making. In 1939, for instance, the department first introduced a requirement for exams in a student’s major field, area of research and in foreign languages.