It has certainly been an interesting and rewarding year as a first year fellow at the Center. The life of a PhD student–much less a first year PhD student–is filled with trial, error, struggle, and hopefully at times, victory. I came to the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media with little to no knowledge of the digital world outside of checking my e-mail and Facebook. I’d never had a Twitter account, I had no clue what Python was, and html looked like a foreign language. I can happily say that nine months later, I have a Twitter account, I’ve created my first digital history project with a proficiency level in html and css–but I still just cannot wrap my mind around Python.
After working at the Center for a year and spending time in all three divisions I can say that I have a much better grasp of the digital world, digital history, and what it means to be a member of this growing field. I am proud to say that over the last year I’ve worked on multiple projects that have made me feel like I belong in this community and can continue to grow in my personal goals. This semester in the Education division, I had the opportunity to work with one of my favorite organizations–National History Day. I did a lot of background work for their 100 Leaders project–collecting data, organizing tallies, and adding and organizing that data onto the website. However, one of the most gratifying projects over the semester was working on information that will be implemented into the online DH certificate that will be offered by the university and the Center in the Fall of 2015.
I would like to thank the Center for giving me this incredible opportunity. While it has been a trying semester I have learned many things that I can now use to further my career in academic history. While I will not be returning to the Center in the fall and will be returning to my love of working with undergraduates I am excited to show everyone at CHNM how much I was able to learn when I present a digital portion of my dissertation in the coming years. I believe what I learned in both my Clio courses–especially Clio II–gave me a strong foundation that will make for promising research.
Thank you RRCHNM.