The Public Face of Private Scholarship: The Drew University Graduate History Podcasting Project

Anne Ricculli (Drew University)

In the spring of 2016, Drew University convened a Graduate Student Digital Advisory Committee tasked with identifying digital skills required by modern graduate students to support humanities research, writing, and presentations. Faced with uncertain job markets, Drew takes seriously the imperative to prepare graduate students for careers both within the academy and beyond these institutional boundaries. With the dual mission of “putting the humanities to work,” and addressing “the urgent challenges of our time with rigorous, independent, and imaginative thought,” the Committee embarked on a Podcasting project.

Podcasting is a key communication method and a critical tool for today’s historians and public intellectuals. This project seeks to cultivate in graduate students an attitude towards scholarship that incorporates the public value of what we do.

This presentation will discuss this work in-progress, from inception to current status, with the challenges, pitfalls, and triumphs inherent in this digital collaboration. Consistent with the conference theme of “Negotiating Borders,” we argue that the process of identifying digital initiatives that minimize the boundary between theory and practice enhances graduate student education, providing opportunities to implement and assess effective public engagement.

Anne Ricculli is a Ph.D. candidate at Drew University with an MA in Museum Studies (NYU). Her dissertation digitally searches Victorian-era periodicals, tracing portrayals of natural history. Currently student archivist at Drew’s Special Collections and University Archives, Anne processing collections and contributes to digitization projects. Previously, she trained users in database software and designed non-profit and for-profit websites. Anne is a weekly contributor to @DrewUSpecColl, and blogged for Morristown National Historical Park Museum and Library.


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