Welcome back to a new academic year, which means we have a couple of new Public History graduate assistants as well as a few returning ones. You will get to learn a little bit about each of our graduate assistants, who help with the daily operations of the Albert Gore Research Center. We value our archive as a site of learning and training. Our graduate assistants get hands-on experience in archival processing and description, reference services, exhibit curation and fabrication, oral history recording, preservation of documents and objects, classroom instruction, outreach, and more!
Keneisha Mosley is a second-year M.A. student. Originally from Memphis, she received her undergraduate degree in History and Classics from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UTK). Her historical interests are Greek and Roman history with an emphasis on women and religion. Her thesis topic, however, focuses on analyzing the Greco-Roman architecture of fraternity and sorority houses at UTK and their relationship to antebellum style houses during the Civil War and Jim Crow segregation eras. She’s a HUGE fan of Harry Potter, and her favorite foods are tacos and chicken wings.
Marley Abbott is one of our returning graduate assistants and she is in her second year as a M.A. student. She was born in Nashville and has lived in Gallatin since 2008. She received her B.A. in History with a minor in English Literature from University of Tennessee, Chattanooga. She grew up in a military family and moved around a lot, including parts of Europe. This lifestyle gave her the opportunity to explore different cultures and experience a variety of museums, which fostered her love of history. The next places on her travel list are: the Bastogne War Museum in Belgium, the Hobbiton Movie Set in New Zealand, the State Hermitage Museum in Russia, and the Museum of Egyptian Antiquities in Egypt.
Hannah Meller comes to MTSU from Signal Mountain, TN and is in her first year as a M.A. student. She received her undergraduate degree in History with a minor in Travel and Tourism from Clemson University. She wishes to work in exhibit development or a research position at a history museum following her completion of graduate school. She was drawn to the public history field while attending the Governor’s School for the Scientific Study of Tennessee Heritage in the summer before her senior year of high school. Her research interests include Modern Irish History, the British and German home front during World War II, and the American South. She loves amusement parks and cheesy tourist attractions, like those you can find in Gatlinburg.
Alissa Kane is another returning graduate assistant and is in her second year as a M.A. student in the Public History program. She is from Frankenmuth, Michigan. She received her bachelor’s degree in history at Saginaw Valley State University. For her thesis, she is writing on the history of the commemorative landscape in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Her favorite TV shows are the Office and The Walking Dead. In her spare time, she likes to hike and hangout with her dog.
James Rucker received two undergraduate degrees from MTSU–one in film-making and another in philosophy and history. He locates himself within the philosophical tradition that felt philosophy had become too abstract and academic, “These philosophers (such as the pragmatists, Marxists, and existentialists) sought to escape the ivory tower and return to the rough ground of lived experience, mired in its projects, struggles, and commitments.” Their fundamental concern is how to unify theory and practice, and it is from this perspective that he approaches Public History. He enjoys parenting a gecko and doing karaoke on the weekends.