Every spring, public history students in the public history practicum (HIST-730) engage in hands-on learning through projects with various external partners. For students, these projects provide an arena for authentic learning, a chance to build resumes, and an opportunity to work closely with a professional mentor. For our partners, the projects provide valuable, professional assistance in developing their interpretive programming and exhibits. Projects require students to work in small teams of two or three people and spend about 100 to 150 hours apiece researching and developing the final product. Through the process of creating these projects, students learn best practices in interpretive planning, visitor evaluation, writing for public audiences, and working with new media. Students are required to build digital portfolios and present their work to a gathering of partners and faculty at the end of the semester.
Our current partners:
National Museum of American History
Worked on a number of components for the upcoming permanent exhibition American Enterprise.
Developed a walking tour of Washington, DC, on inventions dealing with sound.
Developed online lesson plans as resources for teachers connecting history to plants in the collection.
Researched and developed a furnishing plan for a future radio room in the house.