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Where are you currently located and what are you up to?

"After Fredonia, I went on to get my Masters of Library Science at UB and loved the Buffalo area so much, I never left. I currently work as the Marketing Specialist at SofTrek Corporation, a company that makes nonprofit fundraising software. Within the marketing department, I am responsible for search engine optimization, client communications, trade show coordination, company metrics, and a number of market research projects, so there's never a dull moment! I am also an adjunct instructor for Bryant & Stratton's online program, where I teach information literacy courses. I greatly enjoy working with diverse students at Bryant & Stratton and find myself learning as much from them as they do from me."

How did you become interested in History/Social Studies Adolescence Education?

"Growing up, I was always a fan of historical fiction. One of my favorite series always had historical notes in the back and it soon became a hobby of mine to look up the "real story" after I read each book. My high school history teacher was the one who noticed my passion for the subject and it was her mentorship that solidified my decision."

How did Fredonia's History/Social Studies program prepare you for your current work and/or future plans?

"The research skills that the History program instilled in me have been invaluable. My combination of history and library degrees have made me the go-to researcher in my company and it's a skill that's becoming more and more valuable in the corporate setting.

It was also because of the support and direction of the history department that I was placed in an internship with the Reed Library Archives & Special Collections during undergrad. This internship began as a semester-long project and turned into a 2 1/2 year student position that drove me to get my MLS.

I also cannot describe how valuable the presentation and communication skills I learned were when I went to grad school and then the professional world. The history department taught me how to best get my opinions across, support my ideas, and speak up when it matters most.

Lastly, there is a cultural sensitivity you have to have in the marketing profession, particularly when marketing to nonprofit organizations. It's essential that you understand what speaks to people, what might offend, and how people relate to one another. That cultural sensitivity and my ability to relate to different people and build meaningful relationships was fostered by my professors and the history program."

What advice do you have for students beginning the History/Social Studies program?

"Explore the possibilities with your degree and don't box yourself in. I've met so many fantastic educators, marketing professionals, publishers, writers, librarians, etc. with degrees in history. Also, history covers a lot of ground, so as important as a focus is, don't be afraid to take a couple courses outside your comfort zone. If you're interested in American history, maybe check out a course in African or Asian history.

Think about your overall career goal. While at Fredonia, I also earned my degree in computer information systems so I could pursue a career in digital libraries. Some of my peers added majors/minors in second languages, which are great assets for teachers and journalists, and a necessity for future history studies.

Don't be afraid to get to know your professors and ask questions. They want to get to know you and your goals and bring a wealth of knowledge. Stop in and talk with your advisor once and awhile.  And yes, knowing how to properly cite your sources is still important after college."

History Department

  • E332 Thompson Hall State University of New York at Fredonia Fredonia, NY 14063

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