History, New Orleans, and World War II

The semester is almost done!  I couldn’t be happier.  Tomorrow I’m turning in my final paper for my World History Research Seminar, and after that I have two final papers and that’s it (also two ten-minute and fifteen-minute presentations on them).

This evening was the last meeting of the semester for our PAT chapter.  At the closing of the meeting we discussed the 2018 Biennial which will be hosted in New Orleans.  The 2016 Biennial was at Disneyland but it came at the beginning of my graduating semester, so months before my senior thesis would be completed.  I’m in better shape now to speak at a conference, and the pres said that they may be working on a World War II panel at the Biennial and my heart leaped when he said that.  They especially want Asia/Pacific content, which is what my recent research has been on.  I haven’t presented at any conferences yet so I know that’s something I need to start doing.  I’m hoping I don’t lose the courage to apply when the application deadline actually rolls around (October).

I’ve also started interning at a historic site near my neighborhood.  I’m part of the education team and I just do research for program content and will be given to choice to work with school groups that come to the park or to go to school visits (I’m going on one next Thursday to a private school near my university).  Right now my current homework is to do primary source research, looking at the Japanese perspective on Pearl Harbor and plantation immigration.  Things are going great. 🙂

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Marching Along…

It’s March 31st and I have roughly one month left of school before my final papers are due.  This semester has been extremely stressful and I cannot wait for it to be over.  Since both of my history advisors are off island, I sought solace from academic life in my past Religion professor who basically told me that it’s okay to tack an extra year on to my MA program if it means less stress, especially if I already have a job — even one irrelevant to my academic interests — since I won’t necessarily need my degree to get a job at the moment.  I currently work twenty four hours per week, but he said with a full graduate load, I should not exceed sixteen (this is impossible if I want to continue to feed myself and pay my bills).

As much as I love my job, I’m starting to feel differently about it.  I love my coworkers the most, and when I really think about it, I would not want to continue to work at my current workplace if they were to leave or retire.  I’m basically there because of the emotional attachments I’ve formed.  That being said, when two education coordinators from a National Park Service site came to speak to my Museum Studies class last week, I casually asked the director if they ever take on interns (a mandatory internship is part of the MS program).  To my surprise, he said he would work something out with me and gave me his phone number.  We met today over coffee and he basically told me that he’d have me shadow twice — once at the site and once to a school visit — and after that, would work out a pay for me and start me off at eight to ten hours per week and increase it as we go.  He asked what kind of pay I’d be comfortable with and I gave the pay I currently receive, and he laughed and said they’d pay me a few dollars more per hour, as they won’t make me work for free.  I love my workplace, but I do work for love, not money there.  I’m really excited and I hope it pulls through.  I’d be working with students, elementary through high school, and teachers, both at the site and in classrooms and also conducting research at the State Archives and other sites for program content.  I’ll keep my fingers crossed until he calls me back next week to finalize everything…