Public History Alumni
Our Newest Alumni
Mark Roblee (PhD, 2019) Visiting Lecturer in History and Alumni Relations Coordinator, UMass Amherst (Amherst, MA)
Currently, I am teaching History and Its Publics at UMass Amherst. I entered the UMass Public History Certificate Program with an interest in the intersection between public history practice and the “presentation” of antiquity in museums, popular culture, and heritage. I continue to wonder about "numinous objects" and why people love really old things. In 2007, I worked on Mount Holyoke College’s “Excavating Egypt” show and, in 2012, interned with the museum education director there during the “Reconstructing Antiquity” exhibition. Using the “Reconstructing Antiquity” collection, I produced a professional development workshop on teaching with objects for high school teachers of Greek and Roman civilization along with a guidebook for use in and out of the classroom. In 2012, I co-designed and mounted an exhibit on sericulture “The Thread That Connects”) for Historic Deerfield. More recently, I’ve co-facilitated two rounds of the Applied Humanities Learning Lab (Five College/Mellon), a public humanities intensive for Five College undergraduates. In 2017, I co-facilitated a workshop at the National Humanities Conference which took a group of professionals to the Boston Common and Public Garden to create “pop-up” Humanities “happenings” for/with the public.
If public history can be defined as “how history works in the world,” then I consider the work I do in the UMass History Department in career development for history majors a public history practice. I want my students to know how much the world needs the important skills and perspectives they bring to it. Finally, I’m always looking for new ways to share my enthusiasm for the humanities and explore human thought, experience, and creativity across time and place.
Perri Meldon (MA 2019), Ph.D. Student, Boston University's American and New England Studies Program