Senior Profile–Jordan C.

As we wrap up the 2020-21 academic year, we thought it would be nice to have a little feature for each of our graduating seniors.

Today’s featured student is Jordan C. from Biddeford, Maine. Jordan is a double major in History and Politics.

What are your favorite hobbies or activities?
Cross-Country, breakdancing, skiing, hiking, and searching for general knowledge

Why did you become a history major?
I one day aspire to be a public servant in the Federal Government who brings positive institutional change. In order to bring positive changes in the present, one must understand those who brought changes in the past. Studying history has allowed me to do that.

What is one book from a history class that will stick with you?
Definitely Bloodlands by Timothy Snyder. Eastern European history is a topic I didn’t know much about and Snyder’s book helped touch on the topic. I’ve also watched some of his lectures in the past on American society that were extremely informative. Professor Pajakowski also is an extremely funny professor (as is the rest of the history department) and kept things extremely entertaining when talking about the topics in Bloodlands when teaching Modern East Europe.

What is a fond memory you will have about your time as a history major?
Definitely my history capstone with Professor Salerno. We covered the history of American Citizenship and the topics were extremely relevant and interesting. Arguably I learned the most in this class and learning about citizenship taught me a lot about my place in America in a historical context.

Who was the most interesting or intriguing historical figure that you learned about while at Saint Anselm?
Ho Chi Minh in Vietnam War with Professor Masur. I did not know that he was inspired by so many international figures outside of standard communism. For example, George Washington was an inspirational figure to Ho Chi Minh. 

Do you have any plans after graduation?
I intend to go to graduate school, hopefully studying Public Policy.

Senior Profile–Maria G.

As we wrap up the 2020-21 academic year, we thought it would be nice to have a little feature for each of our graduating seniors.

Today’s featured student is Maria G. from Augusta, Maine. Maria is a History Major with Minors in Philosophy and Russian Area Studies.

What are your favorite hobbies or activities?
I love to play the violin, read, draw, and debate with friends.

Why did you become a history major?
I became a history major because the expansion of public history and pursuit of historical truth inspire me. This has ultimately led me to pursue two internships with historical societies which have allowed me to help expand public access to information which might have otherwise been lost to time.

What is one book from a history class that will stick with you?
Anna Karenina was one of the most memorable reads of my entire college career. Re-reading this masterpiece as a young adult rather than a teen was an enlightening experience, and I found myself in awe of Tolstoy’s understanding of human psychology.

What is a fond memory you will have about your time as a history major?
Though it was a difficult and often stressful time, I look back on the fall of my junior year and the process of writing my thesis fondly. I was able to write about a severely under researched demographic of women, present my research at a state conference, and make several lifelong bonds with my peers along the way, all of which made the struggle worthwhile!

Who was the most interesting or intriguing historical figure that you learned about while at Saint Anselm?
The 16th-century Venetian poet and courtesan Veronica Franco is a fascinating figure due to the intersection of her humanist education and struggles as a sex worker. This makes her both highly articulate yet also direct about the difficulties of surviving as a woman in Renaissance Italy. Her surviving works place her as one of the earliest proto-feminists, and there is currently a case being made that she should be considered to be one of the first feminists. Using verse, she would publicly rebuff and humiliate men who would speak ill of her—a method which was unheard of at the time.

If you could live in a time and place that you studied, what would it be?
For the sake of art, culture, and aesthetics alone, I would have liked to live during the reign of Catherine the Great.

Do you have any plans after graduation?
I will be attending law school in the fall but have not yet decided which institution I will commit to.

Record Number of History Majors Inducted into Phi Alpha Theta

On Friday, April 16, 2021, the Saint Anselm College History Department inducted fourteen new members into the National History Honor Society Phi Alpha Theta in Perini Lecture Hall with parents and friends joining via Zoon.

Phi Alpha Theta is an academic honor society whose mission is to promote the study of history through the encouragement of research, good teaching, publication, and the exchange of learning and ideas among historians. The society also seeks to bring students and teachers together for intellectual and social exchanges that promote and assist historical research and publication by members. There are 970 chapters and approximately 400,000 members in the United States. The Saint Anselm College Sigma Omega chapter was founded in 1972

Undergraduate students must complete a minimum of 12 semester hours (4 courses) in History with a minimum History GPA of 3.1 and a 3.0 overall GPA. Members receive four issues of The Historian and are eligible to present research at one of 35 annual regional Phi Alpha Theta regional conferences. They can also apply for funding for undergraduate and graduate scholarships and prizes

The new members of the Sigma Omega Chapter of Phi Alpha Theta are Marykate Albert, Sara Anoli, Emma Bickford, Alexandra Casey, Jordan Cook, Nelson Gibb, Sarah Helmar, Madison Lessard, Jessica Long, Aidan McLaughlin, Katherine Menice, Connor O’Neill, Joshua Pratt, and Tyler Reynolds.

Senior Profile–Brodie D.

As we wrap up the 2020-21 academic year, we thought it would be nice to have a little feature for each of our graduating seniors.

Today’s featured student is Brodie D. from Wolfeboro, New Hampshire. Brodie is a History and English double major with a minor in Philosophy.

What are your favorite hobbies or activities?
Politics and procrastinating. 

Why did you become a history major?
Because I did not want to be a Politics major anymore. I also enjoy being challenged by the brilliant minds of those who teach courses for the History Department. 

What is one book from a history class that will stick with you?
Blair by Anthony Seldon. It really taught me the art of “spin.”

What is a fond memory you will have about your time as a history major?
Definitely the trip to Cuba. That is an experience I will never forget. 

Who was the most interesting or intriguing historical figure that you learned about while at Saint Anselm?
Professor Dubrulle. His life stories have taught me many valuable life lessons. [Editor’s note: Professor Dubrulle’s colleagues, friends, and family will be surprised to learn that he is considered an “interesting or intriguing historical figure.” ]

If you could live in a time and place that you studied, what would it be?
1980s London. It really seemed like a happening kind of place. 

Do you have any plans after graduation?
Finding employment.

Millett, Bickford, Lessard, and O’Neill Present at Phi Alpha Theta

On Saturday, March 27, Saint Anselm College hosted the Phi Alpha Theta New England Regional Conference. This year’s conference was virtual on Zoom. Four Saint Anselm College students joined 22 other history majors from 11 New England colleges and university to share their research. Faculty advisors from other institutions once again recognized the high quality research of Saint Anselm College students, awarding Christopher Millett and Emma Bickford prizes. 

One Thing After Another caught up with Christopher Millett ‘21, Emma Bickford ‘22, Madison Lessard ‘22, and Connor O’Neill ‘22 to ask them about their experiences.

Chris Millett ’21 

Q: What was your presentation about?

A: I presented a paper on my senior thesis, which is entitled “False Generosity, Oppression, and Residential Homogeneity: A Freirean Perspective on the Unintended Longevity of Massachusetts’ Metropolitan Council for Educational Opportunity (METCO) Program.” METCO is a one-way program that buses students who are racial minorities from Boston to mostly white suburban school districts. The program was founded in the mid-60’s with the intention of only lasting a few years. Fifty-four years after its inception, METCO still exists today.  In short, my research and presentation tried to provide an answer to the question: why is METCO still around when it was supposed to last only a few years? Relying heavily upon the work of education sociologist Paulo Freire, I claim that since METCO deals with a much larger problem that remains unaddressed—namely residential segregation that has contributed to persistent inequality—the program has continued.

Q: What was it like to present your research at an academic conference?

A: It was fun! It was great to meet students and professors from colleges and universities around New England and share our research. It was also great to attend the presentations of fellow Saint Anselm College students. Emma Bickford and I were in Professor Moore’s History Research Seminar class this past Fall (2020) together and to see the progress that we each made in the span of seven months, from beginning our research in August to presenting our work at a regional academic conference in March, was really cool.

Emma Bickford ’22

Q: What was your presentation about?

A: I presented on my thesis “The Concord Writers’ Block: An Exploration into Historic Literary Tourism and the Changing Outsiders’ Image of Concord, Massachusetts.” Concord is a hub for literary tourism as it was home to authors Louisa May Alcott, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nathanial Hawthorne, and Henry David Thoreau. My paper analyzes how historic literary tourism played an integral role in shaping outsiders’ image of Concord, especially when this image changed over time in conjunction with major historical events and movements happening at the beginning and end of the twentieth century.  

Q: What was it like to present your research at an academic conference?

A: I enjoyed the opportunity to share my findings with a larger audience and to hear from other dedicated students on a variety of unique topics. Receiving questions and feedback from history professors and students at various colleges opened my eyes to new ways in which I can further research on my topic. It was valuable for me to sharpen my skills in presentation and public speaking. 

Madison Lessard ’22

Q. What was your presentation about?

A: I presented my research on the Camino de Santiago, or the Way of Saint James. This is a pilgrimage to the city of Santiago de Compostela in northwestern Spain, which, according to Christian tradition, is the burial site of Saint James the Great, one of Jesus’ twelve disciples. The Camino has resurged as one of the most popular pilgrimage routes in Europe, especially for Christians, in recent years. The pilgrimage has roots in its massive popularity during the Middle Ages. My project, entitled “Four Ways to Santiago: Mapping Pilgrim Itineraries,” follows the journeys of four different pilgrims from the medieval and early modern periods as they made their way to the city of Santiago from various starting points in Western Europe. I used primary source documents from the four pilgrims to examine their travels, and mapped the pilgrimage routes using ArcGIS spatial history mapping software, to compare and contrast different routes taken during different centuries to reach the same destination.

Q. What was it like to present your research at an academic conference?

A: This was my first time formally presenting my research outside of a class setting, and I’ll admit that I was slightly nervous before the conference, simply because of lack of experience. However, I very much enjoyed presenting my research. Because a good portion of my project was visual, what with my various maps and comparisons of itineraries, I prepared a PowerPoint as part of my presentation and felt that this added an important dimension to my talk. I was lucky to be on a panel with a good turnout (even over Zoom!), and we had great conversations about many topics related to the Middle Ages, as the other student presenter on my panel gave a fascinating presentation on Frankish knights and feudalism. It was wonderful to have so many people in one place who are as interested in medieval history as I am. Sharing my research with an audience is something I definitely hope to do much more often in the future, and I’m looking forward to doing it in person once that’s possible.


Q: What was your presentation about?

A: My presentation concerned Roman opinions of the Near East, specifically examining what the Romans though of the Parthians and the Black Sea peoples during the late Republican and early Imperial periods. My presentation examined relevant literature, archeological evidence, events, and written history, and strove to understand how the Romans viewed Parthia and the Black Sea region.

Q. What was it like to present your research at an academic conference?

To present my research at the Phi Alpha Theta conference was a great experience. I was able to share my scholarship with others interested in my area of research as well as listen to the research of others pertaining to various eras of history. Those in attendance were truly interested in what all of the student presenters had to say and were eager to learn and engage with the presenters in meaningful discussions, which furthered the knowledge of all. I hope to be able to present again next year, and I look forward to the conference being in person. 

Professor Moore on Evangelicals and Presidential Politics

Professor Andrew Moore had edited a collection of essays—Evangelicals and Presidential Politics: From Jimmy Carter to Donald Trump—for which he also wrote an introduction. This work will be published by Louisiana State University Press in April 2021.

The research of faculty in the History Department has always interested One Thing after Another, so this blog decided to ask Professor Moore about his book.

Q: How did you come to edit this book?

A: This project started way back in 2017, when I hosted a conference at the NHIOP. That conference originally was intended to mark the 40th anniversary of a Newsweek cover story that labeled 1976 as the “Year of the Evangelicals.” That was the year, of course, when Jimmy Carter was elected president. Carter was a self-described “born again” Christian, a claim that one third of all Americans made about themselves. Even President Gerald Ford, an Episcopalian, claimed to be a born-again evangelical, and voting guides and campaign platforms for the first time were designed to appeal to evangelical Christians. Newsweek’s cover story attempted to explain this phenomenon to others. Newsweek captured what has come to be the conventional wisdom—namely, that the election of 1976 brought evangelicals back into the political arena after some fifty years of self-imposed exile.

So to mark this anniversary, I planned this conference, obtained grant funding from different sources, and invited scholars to come and present their research about the election of 1976 and the history of evangelicals and politics since then. All the authors in this book presented at the conference—including Saint Anselm College’s own professor of theology, Ward Holder. These contributors either expanded their conference presentations or, in one case, wrote something new that was still relevant to the topic.

Q: What’s the book about?

A: Overall, it’s about the role that evangelical Christians have played in American politics between the elections of Jimmy Carter in 1976 and Donald Trump in 2016. It’s a collection of essays written by other people, so there isn’t one argument. Instead, there are several themes and ideas running through the book. A couple of the essays address the question of when evangelical political influence actually began and what its motivating impulses were. These chapters de-emphasize the importance of the election of 1976. One essay traces evangelical political engagement back through the Cold War and anti-communism, and another argues that race, not gender, mattered more for white evangelicals. Most of these evangelicals were white, and one chapter on Eldridge Cleaver (whose own dramatic Christian conversion made national news in the 1970s) shows how even this former Black Panther struggled to push against the whiteness of the movement.

Several of the essays also address issues of gender and sexuality—particularly abortion rights and the pro-life movement—that were central to the evangelical political mobilization of the 1970s. For instance, the election of 1976 helped to politicize abortion, encouraged a realignment of political alliances (between Catholics and Protestants, most notably), and altered evangelicals’ expectation for political candidates. The consequences of these changes would continue into the twenty-first century.

Q: With a title like Evangelicals and Presidential Politics, it sounds like it might be relevant today.

A: I think it is. In the Bible creating and worshipping golden images got God’s people into all kinds of trouble; but at least today’s evangelicals don’t seem to worry so much about that. Seriously, the essays in the book take us through the election of 2016. The statistics then were striking—80 percent of white evangelicals supported Trump. That’s pretty much the same figure as in 2020. White Catholic support was also strong, although it dropped off some in 2020. The essays in the book demonstrate how we got to this point, where evangelical Protestants are such a steadfast Republican voting bloc—”the Republican Party at prayer,” as some have described them. There’s a lot here to help today’s observers understand that relationship.

Savard Reflects on His History Major and Career

You might have read the recent Portraits story that featured Robert F. ’71 and Susan Savard who graciously donated to the new Welcome Center, now named after them. One Thing After Another was intrigued to see yet another former History major doing good and doing well in the world. Bob recently joined fellow former History majors John Vaccaro ’92 and James L. Hauser, Esq. ’91 on the Saint Anselm College Board of Trustees. We decided to follow up and learn more about Bob’s life and career.

Q: Tell us a little bit about your career. You started out at an insurance company?

A: Yes, after graduation, I started with Aetna Life and Casualty in Hartford, Connecticut. In that kind of big company there are multiple career paths. You need to come in adaptable, curious, and creative, with an ability to listen and switch gears. For example, I worked in the actuarial department for awhile despite my math anxiety (I actually came to Saint Anselm in part because it had no math requirement for graduation). But gathering facts on mortality, morbidity, and natural disasters was like the historical research I had done at school. The work of a financial analyst is related—researching the context of a company’s past performance in an attempt to predict what will affect its future. After a stint managing the information systems, I moved to managing the staffing department for the company. Part of this function involved on-campus recruitment for entry-level positions. I found that students with a broad liberal arts background were best suited for the different entry-level positions offered by the company.

After a variety of previous positions, recruitment was something I enjoyed and became particularly good at. In 1990, I left Aetna and started a new career as an executive search consultant. Initially, I worked for several large international executive search firms building my own client portfolio. In 2005, I formed my own executive search firm from which I retired in 2019.

Q: Clearly flexibility was a hallmark of your career!

A: Yes, that actually began at Saint Anselm. I started out as a political science major, but found the curriculum too tightly structured. History gave me more choices regarding areas, regions, cultures, and periods of time to study. Plus Professor John Windhausen just made history interesting! My career has followed in some ways a similar path. After a while I felt the large corporate environment was too limiting—I wanted more flexibility and choice.

The study of history prepared me for a successful career recruiting high-potential executives for corporate clients. Understanding the history of an individual in terms of academic study, previous professional work, and personal pursuits, is key in predicting future professional success. Understanding the history and culture of a corporation is also key in the successful hire of senior level executives.

Q: Sometimes current students think there is a clear and direct path from a given major to the job market. As a former recruiter of college students, did you look for students in specific majors?

A: Yes, in the liberal arts majors (history, English, sociology, and others). As long as the company had a training program, we wanted creative and flexible thinkers. I was seeking potential employees who knew how to learn, and knew when and how to question. They did not take facts at face value but understood how to look for nuance and what might be shaping the facts. I really looked for creative and effective problem solvers. The world doesn’t just throw itself at you—you have to be curious, willing to take chances, and able to sell your ideas and ability for the company.

Q: Obviously you were able to do that, to sell your skills and ability within Aetna and then in your own company. Did you have time to pursue your love of history in your free time?

A: Yes, especially in my recreational travel and previously in business travel. Whether it is domestically or abroad, I like to seek out museums or historic preservations.  I can easily spend hours reading every museum panel or historic sign. It makes the experience of a place so much deeper when I know the history of its people and its past experience. I also watch a lot of the History Channel and read novels set in the past. I’m drawn to the power of the story, of narrative, to explain the connections of our past to the present.

Deshaies Runs for State Rep

It recently came to this blog’s attention that Brodie Deshaies ’21, a History-English double-major (and Philosophy minor), is running for the New Hampshire House of Representatives in District 6 of Carroll County. One Thing after Another could not resist asking Brodie some questions about his experiences.

Q: Why did you choose to attend Saint Anselm College?

A: I chose Saint Anselm College for two very practical, but also important, reasons: the campus looked aesthetically nice and the food was excellent. These were my top concerns when touring colleges around New England. Other things that really solidified my decision to go here were the New Hampshire Institute of Politics and the school’s RCIA program. I was actually already going through a process of conversion prior to my freshman year; attending Saint Anselm College allowed me to complete this process by becoming baptized and confirmed in the Catholic faith. I was previously agnostic.

Q: Originally, you were a Politics major. Now you’re a History and English double-major with a Philosophy minor. Why the change? What brought you to History and English?

A: I decided to drop the Politics major after my freshman year because the classes did not interest me. Nothing against the professors or anything, but I was not passionate about the subject matter. It would have been a terrible four years of college if I did not like what I was studying. I decided to become a History major because I was good at history courses in high school, and I had two AP credits that counted towards the major. I have always really enjoyed history, too, so it was a fitting change. I added an English major because of my EN105 professor freshman year, Kristin O’Brien, and my EN106 professor sophomore year, Ann Holbrook. Both of these professors made me passionate about writing. I enjoy literature, but I have always favored writing and communication. They feel like lost arts. The Philosophy minor was a spur of the moment thing. Second semester junior year, I realized I could fit two more philosophy courses into my schedule for senior year. I have really enjoyed all three philosophy courses I had taken thus far: Formal Logic and Mind and Cosmos, both with Professor Staley, and an ethics course with Professor Brown. Both my theology courses—one with Professor Pilarski and the other with Professor. McMahon—also drove me to my Philosophy minor. I am a strong believer that faith seeks understanding, and my Philosophy minor allows me to continue exploring the Catholic faith.

Q: When and why did you get interested in New Hampshire politics?

A: I became interested during the summer of 2016 because I needed a job, and Senator Kelly Ayotte was hiring. I come from a family with a fairly strong background in Massachusetts politics, but again, this choice was definitely inspired by practical motives. I needed money. My father and I became paid Field Representatives in southern Carroll County. I loved door-knocking and meeting with voters, and after Senator Ayotte lost, I got even more involved. I started going to local and county party meetings, helped local candidates with their campaigns, and ran for state delegate to the party convention in my hometown (Wolfeboro, NH). Eventually, I started getting paid for my work, and now I manage and consult for political campaigns.

Q: In an article that appeared in The Conway Daily Sun, you stated that “the biggest thing I think a representative should do is be an advocate for the people they represent.” What is Wolfeboro like, and what do its people need? What are the biggest problems confronting that part of New Hampshire?

A: Wolfeboro is the second-largest town by population in my county; it has around 6,400 people. It is a mixture of suburban and rural voters, and the average resident’s age is 58.5 years old (making us the second- or third-oldest community in New Hampshire). It suffices to say that we have a lot of retirees. Additionally, Wolfeboro is a resort town and a big summer destination for people all around the world (Wolfeboro is actually dubbed “The Oldest Summer Resort in America” and “The Jewel of Winnipesaukee). Our community is very dependent on tourism. Because of this, people in Wolfeboro demand a business-friendly climate. This means low taxes for individuals and small businesses and realistic regulations that will not overburden any small, local enterprises. Keeping and promoting this business-friendly climate also helps create more jobs and encourages young families to move into town.

The biggest issues affecting my part of New Hampshire is drug addiction, lack of job creation, and housing costs. In my opinion, all three of these issues are interconnected. Many people in New Hampshire struggle to find a well-paying job because they either live in an area lacking economic development or they lack the skills to do many of the technical jobs that already exist. This makes affording a home or place to live much harder, and the cost of housing in New Hampshire is already high. Due to these unfortunate circumstances, many turn to unhealthy coping mechanisms to address the stresses and anxiety of life. The vice of choice tends to be opioids. Wolfeboro needs a state representative willing to fight for it down in Concord, someone who wants to help create a stronger economy and better job training programs, promote and incentivize private developers to build more housing, and someone who will work to combat the Opioid Crisis. These are all things I plan to do if I’m elected.

Q: Do you think that your studies in History and English have made you a better candidate?

Both majors have helped me become a better candidate. They will also help me be a better public servant. My History major has improved my analytical skills and my ability to solve problems. Additionally, it has furthered my knowledge of political systems and my understanding of politics. My English major has helped me better communicate with voters and future constituents. I have noticed you need strong writing skills for everything in life.

Q: What has the campaign trail been like so far, and what’s next?

A: The campaign trail has been fun but obviously busy. I am always working to get yard signs up and to raise funds. I constantly write letters in my local paper, the Granite State News. The next part is to execute and win the election. And after that, I am unsure. If I win I need to start writing some legislation.

Q: Do you plan to make a career of politics, or will your aspirations take you in a different direction?

A: I am unsure if I will ever make a career out of being a state representative, especially because you cannot do that in New Hampshire (they make $200 a term). However, I do see myself continuing to work on political campaigns (for now). I may even start a business with a fellow Saint Anselm College graduate. We will see. I try not to live too far in the future or in the past. I need to win an election first.

Lessard Labors at Literary Agencies

The History Department recently hired Madison Lessard ’22, a History and Theology double-major, as a department student assistant. The History faculty is very pleased to bring her aboard. Soon after she was hired, One Thing after Another learned that Lessard has some uncommon experiences, and this blog thought they were worth sharing.

Q: What brought you to Saint Anselm College, and why did you decide to become a History major?

A: This may sound like a bit of a college admissions cliché, but I came to Saint Anselm after I visited campus and it just “felt right.” Of all the schools I visited my senior year of high school, I felt far more comfortable and welcomed at Saint Anselm than at any other school. The Catholic, Benedictine environment here was also important to me.

I began my freshman year undeclared, but history had long been my favorite thing to learn since elementary school. History was always the subject I chose to spend extra time outside of school researching because it was interesting to me. After a little experimentation with majors, I finally declared my major in history in the second semester of my freshman year, and I couldn’t be happier with where I’ve wound up.

Q: We understand that you’ve been working for different literary agencies since you were 17. Why did you apply for that kind of job? How did you obtain that position at such a young age?

A: One of my oldest hobbies is writing. I’ve been a novelist for many years, and writing and attempting to publish fiction was how I first learned how the publishing industry works. I applied for my first literary internship because I was very interested in reading, editing, and understanding what happened “behind the scenes” in the publishing process. This was the summer before I became a senior in high school. I happened upon the first internship posting online and applied to it because I saw that it was remote and knew that remote publishing jobs don’t come around very often. I participated in an interview process which involved the sample edit of a manuscript, and I eventually learned that I’d gotten the position.

Q: Could you describe to us what you did at a typical day of work? What kind of books did you review? How have your responsibilities changed over the years?

A: I began my literary work as a “reader” or an assistant whose primary job was to review submissions. Literary agents represent writers and negotiate publishing contracts. To add new clients to their list, agents field unsolicited submissions from aspiring authors. My original job was to review these unsolicited submissions and make recommendations about whether my boss should represent them. I originally was responsible for reviewing fiction across a variety of genres. I worked for several agents over the course of two years, and my responsibilities expanded as I gained experience. I now have experience sorting through agents’ submission inboxes, gathering rights information for sales to publishers, and running agency social media. Presently, I’m the assistant to the president of a literary agency in New York City, and I’m set to be promoted again this fall to associate literary agent.

Q: What are the most important skills you’ve learned at this job? Have you learned anything else while working in this capacity?

A: The most important skill by far is the ability to read and evaluate text with a critical eye. Working in publishing means that it’s very important to keep in mind that what you are reading is a text prepared with the goal of being published. In other words, I have to be picky in going over submissions, and I’m often expected to make many notes and comments for writers. This has honed my editing skills and, in fact, improved my own writing quite a bit over the years. I’ve also been grateful to learn the various ins and outs of the industry in general. I will soon to be trained to negotiate book contracts.

Q: Do you plan to make a career of literary work? Or do you have other plans for the future?

A: To be completely honest, I am surprised, but grateful, that I have been able to progress so much in my literary work over these past few years. Because I went into the industry knowing it would be a rather difficult field to break into, I expected that it would take me much longer than it has to move up in position. When I started out at Saint Anselm, I hoped to make a career as an editor or something similar; this is one of the main reasons I sought out literary internships to begin with. My literary work deals mostly, though not entirely, with the fiction side of publishing, and as I’ve gone through college, I’ve become very fond of research and nonfiction writing as well. With this in mind, I most definitely plan to continue my literary work on my own time, but after college, I hope to attend graduate school and work towards a Ph.D. in history. My eventual goal is to conduct academic research and teach while continuing to participate in the publishing world, and hopefully publishing works of my own.

Bickford Interns at the Eisenhower National Historic Site

Emma Bickford ’22, a History-Marketing double-major in the Honors program, just completed a prestigious summer internship at the Eisenhower National Historic Site in Gettysburg, PA. Although she had to carry out her duties remotely due to Covid-19, Bickford still learned a great deal this summer. One Thing after Another is always interested in the experiences of our students and had some questions to ask Bickford upon her return to Saint Anselm College.

Q: Even before you set foot on this campus, you were interested in pursuing a career in public history. What sparked this interest?

A: I became interested in public history when I visited Old Sturbridge Village in middle school. What drew me to the field is the way it makes history come alive by engaging us in stories of the past that stick with us long after we’ve left a museum or historic site. It’s a way of using history as a form of outreach that connects people with history to create a better present and future. I am fascinated with how museums and historic places inspire and educate people by showing them how they are part of a much bigger human story.

Q: How did you find out about the internship at the Eisenhower National Historic Site? What was the application process like?

A: After volunteering with the Boston National Historical Park at Faneuil Hall, I knew I wanted to work with the National Park Service again this summer because of the way they create meaningful connections between visitors and history. While researching different college internship opportunities through the National Park Service, I found the Interpretation Intern application for the Eisenhower National Historic Site. The application process consisted of a resume, cover letter, and two letters of recommendation. After I was selected to move on to the next steps of the application process, I completed a phone interview where I got to share more details about my experience, answer further questions, and learn about what the internship would look like if I was selected.

Q: Originally, before Covid-19 struck, what were your duties and projects supposed to be at this site?

A: Before my internship went remote due to Covid-19, I was originally supposed to live on site in Pennsylvania with other interns. I would have acted as a tour guide for the Eisenhower home and worked at the information desk at the site’s reception center. I would have also researched and presented any other interpretive programming I’d worked on during the summer. Finally, I was supposed to work on social media posts with the goal of connecting Eisenhower to people in the 21st century. The goal of the internship was to work with the Eisenhower staff to formulate interpretive programming that applied Eisenhower’s history to modern day conversations and experiences.

Q: How did your assignments change as a result of the pandemic?

A: My readjusted remote internship offered me the opportunity to learn more about writing for public history and how to engage a community online that is centered around history. I was invited to write two articles on any Eisenhower topic I chose; these will be posted on the park website. I wrote one article exploring the ways in which Eisenhower lived out the advice that he gave students during his commencement speech at Dartmouth College in 1953. My second article centered on how Jacqueline Cochran, a leader for the Women’s Airforce Service Pilots, helped inspire Eisenhower’s campaign for the White House. I also found photographs and researched information for Facebook and Instagram social media posts on various Eisenhower topics. The final aspect of my internship included using Adobe Acrobat to make oral histories more fully accessible for people with disabilities.

Q: What exactly are your career goals? How do you think this internship will prepare you to attain these goals?

A: After leaving Saint Anselm College, I hope to attend graduate school in Museum Studies so I can continue working towards my goal of becoming a Museum Director. This internship, combined with my double major (History and Marketing), has enhanced my understanding of public history as well as strengthened my social media skills. The whole experience has allowed me to see how social media can connect people with historic places and stories while also revealing the degree to which history can make an important contribution to modern conversations. I hope to bring both of these insights with me to graduate school and beyond.