Chair's Message to History Majors
Despite my background as an East Asian historian I can neither confirm nor deny that "May you live in interesting times" is an ancient Chinese curse. But as history majors you should all be able to appreciate why it's meant as a curse and not a blessing. Certainly we are now facing some most interesting times in Alaska and at UAA, since the new governor's budget is going to require UA to absorb a budget cut of between 5%-8% for the 2015-2016 academic year.
What can you do to help during the crisis? If you want to take action there are definitely things that you can do. Talking to your legislators and the Board of Regents is one. In fact, since what we in the faculty try to tell them tends to get filtered out, students (and constituents) can be the most effective advocates for UAA. If you'd rather not strong arm your legislators, you can at least bore your friends and colleagues by constantly telling them how great UAA and the department of history is and what it contributes to the community. This is an area where we tend to be at a disadvantage compared to UAF and UAS since, despite the fact that we're the sixth or seventh largest employer in Anchorage, we're kind of hidden in the weeds in the big city. But Anchorage is a college town. The more folks here are aware of that, the more (hopefully) they'll value UAA.
One last thing you can do to help the department is that when registration for the fall semester comes around register for classes! Especially register for upper division history classes. Even if you're still undecided about whether you really want to take this course or that course, register anyway. Making sure upper division courses meet the enrollment minimums is the only way to ensure that you'll actually have a choice to make when the semester begins. So register early and often when the time comes.
We've also got things to look forward to this semester. I hope all of you will at least consider submitting a sample of your work from 2014 to the Student Showcase. History majors do well here and it's a chance for you to take the credit you got for your work and turn it into glory (both personal and programmatic). And even if you're not planning to present during the Phi Alpha Theta Alaska Conference, March 26-27, we hope you'll turn out to support your friends and fellow majors and get a taste of what it means to "do" history for a living.
This is the first time I've tried to address all of you history majors but I think it's good for you to hear from me from time to time and I plan to make this a regular practice. I just don't know what I should call these future updates. I don't want to give them a pedestrian name like "From the Chair's Office" or something like that. Help me out, here. Give me some ideas. In Japan the chair of the department (gakubu) is called the buchō (部長). Maybe we can do something with that?
I hope all of you have a great semester.
Phi Alpha Theta Issues CFP for Spring Student Conference
The UAA Department of History and the Alpha Beta Gamma Chapter of Phi Alpha Theta extend a call for papers for its Alaska Conference, March 26-27. The Conference welcomes paper proposals on any aspect of history.
Call Paper Timetable: Timely submission of the papers is critical to the success for both the students and the conference. The procedures and timetable below will apply to all submissions.
PAT Jeopardy Night
Join Phi Alpha Theta for History Jeopardy
night! The UAA Chapter of PAT will be playing history-themed Jeopardy
from 5:15-7:15pm next Wednesday (11/19) in SSB 223. Pizza and drinks
will be served! (Professor Ball would appreciate a rough headcount for
the purposes of buying pizza. If you plan to attend, let her know by
Wednesday at noon.) For any questions about the organization or its events, contact PAT Chapter President Kailyn Vaughan.
PAT Planning Meeting for Haunted Halloween Fun Night
Phi Alpha Theta is hosting a meeting to discuss the
coming Haunted Halloween Fun Night put on by the UAA Club Council on October 25th. Phi Alpha Theta will be
participating for the first time this year and hopes to brainstorm ideas for booth activities and determine who will staff the booth. We will also be planning a
movie night in November. If you have a suggestion for
a film, please bring it up at the meeting. We will have
some snacks and drinks. All history majors and minors are welcome to attend!
This planning meeting will be held this coming
Wednesday, October 15 at 4:00 to 5:00pm in the History Department. If you have questions, contact PAT President Kailyn Vaughan.
PAT Game Night
The Alpha Beta Gamma Chapter of Phi Alpha Theta (the National History Honors Society) invites history faculty, history majors, and history minors to come party like it's 1624! The chapter is having its first meeting of the year and a Trivial Pursuit Game Night on Wednesday, October 1st from 4:00-6:00pm in SSB 258. All are welcome (but Prof. Ball would appreciate your RSVP to get a headcount for the purposes of supplying food and drink)! Come for a study break and leave with new friendships with other history enthusiasts, bragging rights, and glory!
At the very beginning of the meeting, PAT will be holding officer
elections for this year. If you currently hold an office and want to
keep it or if you are interested in running for office for the first
time, contact PAT faculty advisor Ray Ball.
Nominations (including self-nominations) will be accepted until noon on
September 30. Officers must be PAT members. Questions about office or
the PAT Chapter Constitution can be directed to Chapter President Kailyn
History Fall Tuition Waivers
The UAA Department of History congratulates majors Kailyn Vaughan and Hannah Sorensen. Both have received tuition waivers for the current semester based on the strength of their academic achievements and on their essays on the topic of why history matters.
2014 Alaska Cold War Conference
Thanks to the generosity of the
Alaska Historical Commission, complimentary tickets are available to UAA students for the Cold War Conference Keynote Address on Thursday
evening, September 4th. Sergei Khrushchev, son of Soviet Premier during
much of the Cold War Nikita Khrushchev, will present "Cold Warriors:
Eisenhower, Kennedy, and Khrushchev" at UAA's Wendy Williamson
Auditorium at 7:30 PM. Tickets are complimentary, but advance registration is required through the conference's website.
History BA Andrew Lessig Accepts Offer From Syracuse Law
Andrew Lessig, who graduated with Honors in History from UAA in May of 2014, has been accepted to Syracuse University's College of Law. He writes:
The History Department congratulates Andrew on his scholarship and wishes him the best of luck in his future educational pursuits at Syracuse!
[posted 26 August 2014]
Department of History Fall Tuition Waivers
The History Department is excited for the new semester and pleased to announce that its application process for fall tuition waivers from the College of Arts and Sciences is now open. In order to apply, students must be declared History Majors and must have taken at least 12 credit hours in History with a minimum of 3 credit hours at the upper level (300 or 400 level courses). The application form and accompanying essay are due to the Department Chair, Professor Paul Dunscomb by 4pm on Monday, August 25th. You may submit your application package electronically to him at firstname.lastname@example.org or in print copy to his office in the History Department (ADMIN 147L).