I have enjoyed learning about the lives of women who attended WM before me. Conducting this research has opened my eyes to things women experienced at the college after WWII into the 1950s.  One of the findings that I found most interesting was that not all women I reviewed interviews of necessarily disagreed with restrictions and rules women had to follow. My own biases and experience as a woman who has grown up in the 21st century believed that women were unhappy if they did not have the freedom to ride in cars or the ability to be out of their dorm past a certain hour. These women, however, made their won fun, went along with the rules, and stuck to the status quo. It was also interesting to see the first stirrings of racist laws and social customs being lifted during the time period. During Ruth Tiller’s time at WM between 1942 and 1945 the editor of the Flat Hat Marilyn Camerly wrote a piece at the time in favor of racial integration on campus that was met with a lot of resistance. She was right but ahead of her time Ruth Tiller (1945) noted. In addition, Mardie Markimm 1955 mentioned that the rule that blacks had to sit in a separate section during convocation was lifted during her time at WM. A decade before massive social change concerning segregation would take place and WM women in particular were advocates for integration. I am excited to present my findings in September to continue to showcase the value of women, their spirit, and their contributions to the college.

Closets and Classrooms: Conclusion

Looking back on my summer research, I am struck by a couple different things.

First, I am painfully aware of just how much more there is to learn about the experiences of LGBTQ teachers. The oral histories I collected certainly dug deep into the lives of my interviewees, shining a light on things they went through, sometimes heartbreaking, and revealing how these experiences shaped my interviewees as people and as educators. That being said, I can’t help feeling like I barely scratched the surface of the topic. There are so many more LGBTQ teachers I didn’t get the chance to speak with, so many more stories that are still untold. I hope that, in the future, I get another chance to interview more queer teachers, to continue to bring their unique and valuable stories to light.

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Final Update: Portraiture of Livia

As I’ve finished my summer of working on my thesis in the classics department, I can reflect back on the waves of frustration and excitement I’ve encountered while researching.  Part of me feels as though I’ve barely chipped into the iceberg surface of this topic and that whatever research I’ve done will need to be followed by much more reading and writing.  However, considering that my honors thesis is a year-long project that I’ll finalize in the coming spring semester, I don’t feel as though I’m off schedule.  In fact, the research I’ve done this summer has given me a huge head start for the work I’ll do during the school year.  For that reason, I feel so grateful for having been given the chance to start my research this summer.  It’s been an incredibly valuable experience to feel as though I have the time to pursue different tangents relating to the topic, and it has made me much more comfortable in my thesis topic.

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Final Post: Water Access in Chaguite, Nicaragua

My final model raises questions about reliability and its practical use. The large area covered by the model (all of Matagalpa) brings into question how specific it is to the very s mall community of Chaguite. My model also does not take into account the cleanliness of the groundwater zones it identifies. The groundwater zones that the model identifies may be contaminated, may not be drinkable or may not be available all year round.

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Spengler Research Conclusion

     Hi everyone!  I am very excited to say that I have submitted my final research essay to my advisor.  The concept for this research began to take shape over one year ago.  To see it come to fruition is stunning.  No paper is ever perfect, but I am proud of the work I have put into this process since I began to do full-time research in May.  I have had my highs and lows throughout this time, but practicing self-care and stepping away from my work now and then contributed a lot to my project’s success.  That way, I rarely felt stressed about my work, and my ideas remained fluid during the entire writing process.

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