I am happily employed teaching U.S. History and World History at the Acton-Boxborough Regional High School in Acton, MA. Needless to say, my work at Skidmore continues to inform my teaching on a daily basis. I am also poking away at an M.Ed. at Lesley University in Cambridge, although I am considering transferring into a M.A. in History program at either Boston University or UMass-Boston.
Three years after graduating from Skidmore, I made a career change to Graphic and Web design. I worked for 2 years at Myriad, Inc. in Boston doing all of their front-end web production. In February of this year, I joined the Web Marketing department at Forrester Research in Cambridge, MA. While I don't use my American Studies degree directly, it provided me with a broad foundation for building a career in design and marketing and it gave me a greater appreciation for the American past. I currently live in Somerville, MA.
I'm a freelance book editor, living in Concord, MA. Since graduation I've always been involved in writing--first (and briefly--that was in the days when we moved a lot) as a newspaper reporter for a local (and excellent) newspaper in New Jersey, but as an editor since 1969, initially working primarily on books in the field of American studies for Greenwood Press. Since then I've broadened the books I work on to encompass just about everything except hard science. I worked in a publishing house for 7 years, but have been freelancing full time since. American studies teaches how to be analytical and how to write. It also fosters an outlook that encompasses a broad array of disciplines, and life, after all, is interdisciplinary. More than that, it gave me something I was passionate about studying. That, after all, is the point of a liberal arts education. The rest will just come. Currently I am the President of the Skidmore Alumni Association and a member of the Skidmore College Board of Trustees.
My graduate work was at Cornell University where I received a Masters in City and Regional Planning (M.R.P.). I am the Economic Development Manager for the city of Benevue, WA. I am responsible for general projects and initiatives including enhancement of retail centers, recruitment and retention of technology companies, telecommunications deployment, etc. American Studies provided a generic background in American culture to which I added practical knowledge gleaned from an urban planning program. All provide good basis for analyzing issues.
I live in Nyack, New York, but I work in Manhattan on the Upper West Side where I am Director of Graduate Admissions. After graduating from Skidmore I did a year of graduate work at Brown University in American Civ., but I was terribly disappointed in the program (my education at Skidmore had been so much better!), and disillusioned by the politics of academia. I left Brown after a year and began teaching high school English, first in Massachusetts, then in New York. I taught both American and English lit classes - Skidmore had prepared me well. Because of my major I was always looking for ways to put the literature in a broader cultural context. When my children were both in school, I went back to graduate school and earned my master's degree in Computers in Education from Bank Street College. I developed software for children with autism and other severe language impairments for a few years, taught writing at Bank Street and also taught in the Computers in Education department. In 1993 I was asked to become the Director of Graduate Admissions, a job for which I am well-suited. I feel I have found my niche. I feel that a background in American Studies helps one to see how deeply interrelated the various disciplines are - how each discipline is but a window onto the broader picture. Through American Studies I learned to look for connections and reverberations. I learned to synthesize material across disciplines, and to think more deeply about the implications of events and social movements. It trained me in habits of mind that have served me very well to think with more depth and breadth and to seek an understanding that takes many perspectives into consideration. I have found that the kind of education I received through American Studies is invaluable
in any complex field in which one needs to look at issues from many sides.
I graduated from the UWW Program, live in Saranac Lake, NY, and am enrolled in the MALS Program at Skidmore. Joanna Zangrando has been my advisor for both programs. The focus of my graduate work is women's history and material culture, specifically textiles. I also do freelance research and writing on local history, and am part of a research team preparing for a traveling exhibit on mid-nineteenth Black settlement in the Adirondacks, entitled, "Dreaming of Timbuctoo," opening this summer at the Adirondack Museum, sponsored by JohnBrownLives! I hope to continue with research projects and work in a museum.
I began my career after Skidmore at the Peale Museum in Baltimore, MD ( the first museum in the US built as a museum) later known as the Baltimore City Life Museum, where I started out as an assistant curator and then ended up doing public relations and fundraising. Something that all non-profits always need! After working there for 5 years (the museum has recently been closed because of lack of funding - it is or was owned by the City of Baltimore), I switched jobs and was Director for the Annual Fund at Garrrison Forest School in Owings Mills, MD. Once my children were born I switched to part time there as an associate in the Development Office. I helped coordinate Reunion Weekend, special events and Trustee meetings, assisted with the Alumnae Bulletin and Annual Repports and mostly worked on research of the constituents to help plan for a major capital campaign. Ten years ago, my husband changed jobs and we moved to Chicago. I have not been working for the last ten years- but have instead been at home in my role as a Mom and I do lots of volunteer work. I would say that majoring in American Studies definately gave me a broader view of America. I am still interested in American history, politics and mostly American culture and art. The research we did was a crucial life skill- I use those skills everyday! Also the organizational and analytical skills we developed in the research process are key to everyday life, working or not. My daughter who is a freshman in high school has been very interested in history, especially American History, and I am enjoying it with her too!
I have stayed very active politically, serving on town committees to make a difference. I have an extensive collection of historical American papers on common women--letters, postcards, recipes, furniture, leaflets, etc. I own a company producing specialty foods called "OTWELL'S"--a pioneer woman in our family.
Jen lives in Asheville, NC with her husband, two dogs, two cats, and six chickens. She grows everything from hops to artichokes, and is a floral designer for the local wedding industry on the weekends. She also has a crafting business named after her grandmothers Bertha & Rose, where she sells jewelry and hand-stuffed pillows at several local stores. Jen also spent seven years as a producer for National Public Radio affiliates across the country.
I received my JD in 1996 from Case Western Reserve University School of Law. I'm an attorney working for General Dynamics. My primary responsibility is the negotiation of contracts with the U.S. Government, as well as with foreign governments and commercial corporations around the world. My job calls for discussion, interpretation, and compromise while interacting with a wide variety of people from different backgrounds. Having majored in American Studies allows me to better understand where the viewpoints, predispositions, and beliefs of other people stem from, as well as allowing insight into how others may perceive my own actions.
I have been a residential realtor for twenty-four years and put my American Architecture interest to use describing homes to customers, writing ads, etc. As a mother of four, I have used my American history and culture knowledge continually, ie., introducing my family to Aaron Copeland and George Gershwin music, American art, as well as helping them with homework!
I graduated in 1982, earned a Masters of Science in Broadcasting from Boston University in 1987, and have worked as a producer and editor for public television in Washington, D.C. (thanks to the Washington Semester program!) and in Maryland. Since I have two boys, ages three and five, I now freelance as a producer and editor of videos that promote the use of technology in the classroom. My clients include Johns Hopkins University and Maryland's State Department of Education. American Studies was a dream major for me. I grew up in Massachusetts surrounded by history but, ironically, never understood the significance of New England's history until I came to Saratoga. Combining art, fiction, first hand accounts and the works of historians breathes life into history in a way I couldn't have imagined. I think I learned how to boil information down to the essence of what it means and that is crucially important for communicating through video. At most I have 15 minutes to convey a message to teachers that will inspire them to explore the technology options at their disposal. You have to find what clicks with them and give them just enough information to peak their curiosity.
After graduating, I spent the first few years working on pro bono legal cases for a Washington, DC law firm. I had the opportunity to be a part of large civil rights cases and individual political asylum applications, which allowed me to use the interdisciplanary background of the American Studies curriculum. Then I moved to London for a year, where I obtained a Master in Comparative Politics from the London School of Economics. Since methods of study in the American Studies field closely mirror the methods we are taught in Comparative Politics, it was easy for me to apply the knowledge from my undergraduate research experiences to my graduate ones. Currently, I'm at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University studying for a Master in Public Policy. The topics and research techniques I learned in American Studies prepared me well for my work in the "real world" as well as my graduate studies.
It's the spring of '05 and I'm in my seventh month in London, studying human geography at King's College. The city is wonderful, and classes have just ended, which means I will now be dividing my time between my thesis and travel (and only minimal procrastination, I hope). My thesis will actually draw on my American Studies roots, as I'll be looking at some cultural and historical aspects of apple farming in New York. When I'm finished up here (some time in mid-August) I plan on returning to the States to either teach high school or work for an environmental NGO. Doing my graduate work abroad has worked well. There are 100 masters students from 35 countries in our Department, and the fact that MA courses in the UK are only a year long saves you both time and money. Best wishes to everyone in the Department.
I live in Boston, MA. and received my M.Ed. from Boston College in 2000. I am currently a fifth grade teacher in Weymouth, MA.
I am living in St. Petersburg, Florida. I received my J.D. from Mercer University in 1998 and am presently the in-house counsel for Bankers/IMSG Insurance Company. Prior to returning to school, I worked in the insurance claims industry for several years. My American Studies degree has been extremely valuable as it has helped me to develop the critical thinking skills necessary for a career in business and later, the law. In addition, I believe that the skills I acquired due to the program's great emphasis on writing have been instrumental in my success in the business/legal community.
In 1986, I started working in money management and economic consulting (which took me as far away as Hong Kong for two months to set up an office to service clients from the Far East). However, I really wanted to get back to working with words--something learned in spades at Skidmore and especially as an American Studies major. I got into publishing via a bi-weekly rag called Tennis Week (I think I made $13k per year). I was Associate Editor and went to a lot of tennis tournaments. But I longed to write about cars--my first, and still burning, passion. After nearly a year of pounding the pavement and a string of rejections, I finally broke through with Automobile Magazine (based in Ann Arbor, MI). I followed that with a stint as a writer for a public relations agency with several automotive clients, and then went on my own for a while as a freelancer writing for PR and Ad agencies. I knew I needed to settle down, however, because I met the woman of my dreams and we planned on getting married and buying a house. I landed with Consumer Reports as an automotive editor and managed to stay for nearly seven and a half years. Last Spring (2000), though, I received an offer too good to pass up from a "dot-com" in Austin, Texas; I became the Senior Editor for carOrder.com and was responsible for all of the content for the web site. The company became a "dot-gone" only four months after I joined, but I was quickly hired by the parent company (Trilogy Software) to work in the marketing division for the Trilogy/Ford Joint Venture. Well, the kiss of death followed me there, too, and the Joint Venture blew a gasket not three months later! I went back to the freelance world and have been busy ever since. We're still in Austin, but I'm talking to a few companies on the East Coast and we may relocate before the end of the summer. Most importantly, my wife and I have a 20-month-old boy (named Evan Michael) who is the best part of our lives. Plus, working at home has allowed me to spend lots of time with him; I get to watch him grow and learn new things every day--probably more than most dads get to see their kids. Even though the job market has been rough over the last 12 months, my time with Evan had made it all worth it. That's my story up to now. My work at Skidmore and everything I learned from the American Studies and English departments prepared me well to handle the rigors of the working world. I so believe in my Skidmore education that I've volunteered as an Alumni Admissions Correspondent for the last 13 years or so.
Currently, I am the Development Coordinator for a regional, resident theater. For the past 8 years I was with 2 dot.coms, working in their marketing department. American Studies was a wonderful major, however, this course of study has had little impact on my professional life.
I reside outside D.C. in McLean, Virginia. I have been an aerobics instructor and personal trainer for 15 years. I just graduated in May 2000 from a Physical Therapist Assistant Program and am now practicing in several rehab/subacute centers. I use my American Studies background primarily when helping my three kids with homework! I am thrilled to have the degree and wouldn't trade it for the world!
I retired from the Federal Government -- 32 years as a Human Resource Specialist. Twenty-four years in a psychiatric hospital setting, and the last 8 years coordinating college recruitment for the Foreign Service at the Dept. of State. We were targeting women and minorities to make a more diverse Foreign Service for America. In that role I realized that American Studies was an excellent background for potential Foreign Service Officers. The Foreign Service exam, which is very competitive, covers American Studies, as well as political science, international relations, economics, etc. In summary, I have never regretted choosing American Studies as a major.....it was an excellent background working for the US Government, as well as in my role of wife, mother, volunteer, and US citizen. I'd love to come back and take classes today......need an update.
After graduation from Skidmore College in 2000, I went into the teaching field through the New York City Teaching Fellows. Last year I got my Master's in Elementary Education and presently I teach Pre-K in Brooklyn, NY. I married Martha Solis in April, 2004. We both received our Master's in Elementary Education from Hunter College in May of 2002. We have a son named Lucas who is now 2 years old. I would like to say thank you to Prof. Pfitzer and Prof. Lynn.
I was born in Chicago, Illinois, worked in New York City after graduation, married in Cincinnati, OH, moved overseas for 5 years where I had 2 children and returned to live in Cincinnati in 1973. I now live in Northern Kentucky and work for A.G.Edwards & Sons, Inc in Cincinnati. I returned to school in 1993, Cincinnati State Technical & Community College, to pursue an Associate Degree in Marketing Management, Business Management & Financial Management while taking as many computer, presentation, and technical writing courses as possible. I assist two stock brokers fulfilling administrative, research and customer service functions. I love working with people and markets which are constantly changing and challenging. My American Studies degree is particularly valuable because it allows me to approach decisions and questions with a long term, balanced approach based on history, economics, sociology etc. rather than on a short term, volatile basis. David Marcell taught me to think and to analyze information and people's actions, not to just react to short term stimuli. I am more interested in trends and sectors than I would have been had I not studied American Studies with Mr. Marcell. This approach has been very successful for me and my family. I personally direct the investments for several family trusts since my father's death in 1977. Currently, I am teaching the Trust beneficiaries about investing and financial planning. I love my job and am never bored.
I currently work at Wieden & Kennedy advertising in New York, New York. I am the receptionist. Being an American Studies major helped sharpen my critical thinking skills--to look at all perspectives and the context from which those perspectives stem.
Since my summer vacation in Portugal, I have been working as an associate project manager for Ogilvy, one of the largest advertising companies in the world, on IBM, dealing with software advertising. It has been a lot of work, but I welcome the challenge. American studies majors would be well off to start interning as soon as possible and taking some business classes because, even though American studies incorporates many of the other majors, there is no connection to business yet. Having a little background in business can only help.
After finishing my master's degree in historic preservation, I moved to Austin, Texas where I am working for Mead & Hunt, a cultural resource management firm. I am an in-house contractor with the Texas Department of Transportation and as of this writing, I'm still waiting to see my first armadillo!
I am finishing my second year of law school at the University of Pittsbugh School of Law. I will be spending the upcoming summer at a firm in Chicago.
My fellow American Studiesians, I miss our time together. Currently, I live in Stamford. CT, and teach Spanish to kids from 2 years old to 4th grade at a Montessori School in Greenwich. I love my job! I get to travel around with my guitar and coach the 7th and 8th graders in tennis and soccer.
Since earning my American Studies degree I worked in the public sector for 10 years - first for a town's new rent control board, then for the City of Boston Law Department. While there I got a Master's in Public Administration, followed by an MBA. Of course I was well prepared through my American Studies background. Since 1989 I have been in the private sector, working as a paralegal in a law firm, which now specializes in representing social security disability applicants. It is a very rewarding field, where the client contact is extensive and usually satisfying. More than as preparation for any particular field of work, however, I feel that my American Studies background has provided a good basis for being a participant in our local, national and global society. It has also enhanced my enjoyment of some of the wonderful historical literature published in the last 30 years.
I have worked in several capacities since leaving Skidmore. I went first to New York City where I worked at both the Ellis Island Immigration Museum and the Museum of Television and Radio. My arrangement with Ellis Island was actually an oral history internship through which I finished up credits for Skidmore. It was a fabulous experience. My time at the Museum of Television and Radio was spent coordinating a series of educational seminars featuring television--and radio--related topics. In the Fall of 1998, I entered the MA/PhD program in American Studies at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia. I completed all my MA coursework and then opted to take a leave of absence from the program for medical reasons (its always SOMETHING with me). I ultimately moved to Richmond, where I worked as an Historical Archivist at the Library of Virginia (part of my graduate study included an internship at the Library, and I was eventually offered full-time employment) for one year. Throughout that time, I was married and diagnosed with thyroid cancer in the same week (1st week of December, 1999) and I've been dealing with both adjustments for the last year. I was declared cancer-free in July at which point I began my current job as an Admission Counselor at the University of Richmond. Here, I am working with prospective students who are interested in entering our heavily writing-intensive and liberal arts-minded undergraduate curriculum. I have always been ardent about how my experience with the American Studies program at Skidmore--with the curriculum, with the faculty, and with the classes--has profoundly affected my life. Discovering a passion for examining American culture across disciplines led to an enhanced self-confidence and broadened world view, and thus my time within Skidmore's American Studies program is truly at the root of my identity. Greg Pfitzer, Joanna Zangrando, Mary Lynn, and Wilma Hall always seemed to understand how formative those years were to me, and their influence on me was profound. I am indebted to them for the way in which they challenged, supported, and nurtured me. They are each true teacher-scholars. What's exciting is that the value of my experience grows as I continue to apply and nurture the foundation laid years ago. Returning to a university-setting and extolling the virtues of a liberal arts education has been vitally important in regaining my health precisely because it draws upon the lessons learned and values instilled at Skidmore. My knowledge of American culture not only drives the way in which I evaluate candidates, but it also informs my ability to work towards the University's mission of diversity. Furthermore, my commitment to the kind of interdisciplinary learning integral in American Studies means that I can genuinely articulate why a student might chose a path in the liberal arts. I find the energy of a college community exhilarating, and working on behalf of one fuels my mind and my body. It's an exciting place to be.
Major: double -American Studies and Elementary Education Right now, I am living in Brookline, MA but working in Ashland, MA. I received my Masters in Education at Boston College this past spring. Currently, I am teaching Social Studies to sixth graders in Ashland. The curriculum is U.S. History, beginning with the Revolutionary War, which is wonderful! I rely on my background as an American Studies major all the time. I refer back to my notes, books, and handouts from all my classes, especially Greg Pfitzer's. It has been a tremendous experience thus far, and I thank the department!
I have not pursued a higher degree, but I have taken plenty of classes in a variety of things. I live in New Yorks City and work in Advertising Sales for the Atlantic Monthly. I work as a liason between the agencies and their clients. I help them to understand the benefits of using the Atlantic as an advertising vehicle. American Studies taught me to research, think critically and creatively about issues, and to back up my thoughts/arguments with facts. Working for a magazine rich in American Literature, History, Politics and Policy--I feel my liberal arts degree has provided me with a variety of ways to connect with my clients and with the magazine itself.
I just moved outside of Boston and I am currently living in Watertown, MA with my cat Rascal (also a Skidmore alum). I received my Masters as a Reading Specialist from Boston University and I have been teaching 8th grade reading in Waltham, MA for the last six years. To this day, I still discuss with my students the unique experiences I had as an American Studies major and the impact that had upon my understanding of our country and myself.
I live in San Francisco CA, and work in Sunnyvale, CA, further education at Temple Law School 1992, University of Tokyo, Fulbright Fellow 1992-1993. As a business person in Silicon Valley and simply as a human being, my Am Studs background is with me everyday. Much of what I do as a lawyer is to solve puzzles and negotiate relationships. Although they are often legal/business puzzles revolving around two companies working together, I must understand the context of the transactions, the people involved and their motivations. Negotiations are all about the people involved and the transaction is usually about the business cultural context of the deal. Having first read Henry James' Washington Square and many great works of American writers, and having first looked carefully at America's economic policies, historical and cultural norms etc. during my days with Mary Lynn, Tad Kuroda and others at Skidmore, I began to learn to make important connections to the themes and undercurrents operating in the world around me. These insights help me in my work and life to connect with those around me and to lay a context for my endeavors. It has been a great way to look at our world.