Personal Statement:

I am a Ph.D candidate in Public History (with a Designated Emphasis in Feminist Studies) at the University of California, Santa Barbara. I work with Leila Rupp, Interim Dean of Social Sciences and Distinguished Professor of Feminist Studies, and Public History professors Harold Marcuse, Randy Bergstrom, Stephan Miescher. You can read more about me in the GradPost or The Bottom Line school newspaper, or visit my personal website.

On May 23, 2014 six UCSB students were killed and another 14 individuals were injured in a violent crime spree that occurred in Isla Vista, the residential and commercial district adjacent the UCSB Campus. In the immediate aftermath I worked with UCSB counselors to provide crisis trainings for the graduate student Teaching Assistants, and initiated a memorial collection and documentation project under the guidance of Debbie Fleming, Assistant Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs. For links to NBC Nightly News stories about what occurred click here and here.

Since June 2014 I have served as the Project Manager for the May 23, 2014, University of California, Santa Barbara and Isla Vista Memorial Archive. Housed in the UCSB Library’s Department of Special Research Collections, our archive documents the campus and larger community’s response to this senseless violence. It includes thousands of physical artifacts and digital images of condolence items from our immediate community and from around the world. The Archive is available to researchers and classes. Click here to access the Finding Aid and click here to read about the history of the project.

At the request of the UCSB Library I also served as Curator and Project Manager for a large one-year memorial anniversary exhibit. The exhibit entitled We Remember Them: Acts of Love and Compassion in Isla Vista served as a tribute to those who were killed and injured, and highlighted the ways our community came together to heal through loving acts of remembrance. In creating the exhibit I worked closely with the parents and friends of the victims. Though we had 22 campus and community sponsors, the 6,000 square foot exhibit was largely student-run and volunteer driven. In the ten weeks that the exhibit was open we had over 1,800 visitors. It was the largest exhibit in the University’s history both in terms of size and attendance.  Articles on the exhibit were published by NoozhawkThe Bottom Line, the Ventura County Star, and a photo was published in the LA Times.

My project team and I recently received the Leadership in History Award from the American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) for our archive and exhibit. This award is shared by the UCSB Public History Program, the UCSB Library’s Department of Special Research Collections and the campus’s divisions of Student Affairs, and Humanities and Fine Arts. To read an article about our national award click here.

My dissertation is tentatively entitled The Humanity of Loss: Memory and Politics in the Wake of School Shootings. I am looking at how the concept of “school shootings” has evolved over time, and how school communities have engaged in memorial projects in the aftermath of such violence. The response to the May 23, 2014 Isla Vista Rampage provides my primary case study and for comparative purposes I am examining the collection projects at Virginia Tech and Columbine High School. I am particularly interested in the ways that friends and family members of victims mobilize memory to fight for political and social change. Through this work I hope to provide a larger context for thinking about the various ways we create meaning out of acts of violence, whether it be calls for gun reform, combating violence against women, or turning to artistic expression to help grapple with loss. My methodology employs oral history, as well as archival driven history with a cultural studies approach focused on analysis of discourse, representation, and reception.

Since much of the work I have done is visual in nature (such as the exhibit I curated and the images in the archive) digital history is also a major component of my dissertation. I am currently leading the effort to create a memorial website and on-line archive to represent the physical artifacts in the May 23, 2014, University of California, Santa Barbara and Isla Vista Memorial Archive. I am looking forward to incorporating these digital aspects in my dissertation in the future. In the meantime, a virtual tour of the exhibit utilizing Google Business 360 can be found here.

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Spontaneous memorial at Isla Vista Deli, May 2014. Photograph by Claire Bredenoord.

Dissertation Title:

The Humanity of Loss: Memory and Politics in the Wake of School Shootings

 

Teaching Fields:

Public History

U.S. History Since 1877

U.S. Social Protest Movements

Women, Gender, and Sexualities in U.S. History

Race and Ethnicity in U.S. History

U.S. Constitutional and Legal History

Global Sexualities

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Photograph of origami cranes left at Isla Vista Deli spontaneous memorial site. Photograph by Claire Bedenoord.

Courses Taught:

Teaching Experience

Spring 2016    Writing 2: Introduction to Academic Writing and Composition; Teaching Assistant

Winter 2016    Writing 2: Introduction to Academic Writing and Composition; Teaching Assistant

Spring 2015    History 192 DR: Directed Readings in Public History,

Isla Vista Community History and Historical Commemoration; Practicum Supervisor

Spring 2015    Art Creative Studies 199: Independent Studies; Practicum Supervisor

Fall 2014         History 196: Internship/ History 199: Independent Studies; Practicum Supervisor

Summer 2014  Writing 2: Introduction to Academic Writing and Composition*; Associate/Instructor

Spring 2014    Writing 2: Introduction to Academic Writing and Composition; Teaching Assistant

Winter 2014    Writing 2: Introduction to Academic Writing and Composition; Teaching Assistant

Fall 2013         Writing 2: Introduction to Academic Writing and Composition; Teaching Assistant.

2013-2014       Lead Teaching Assistant, History Department; Lead TA (trained 38 History TAs)

Winter 2013    History 17B: Contested Visions of American Liberty, 1840-1920; Teaching Assistant

Spring 2012    Feminist Studies 150: Sex, Love, and Romance; Teaching Assistant

Winter 2012    History 17B: Contested Visions of American Liberty, 1840-1920; Teaching Assistant

2011-2012       Lead Teaching Assistant, Feminist Studies Department; Lead TA, (trained 20 TAs)

Fall 2011         History 17A: The American People, 1492-Early 1800s; Teaching Assistant

Spring 2011    Feminist Studies 150: Sex, Love, and Romance; Teaching Assistant

Winter 2011    History 17B: Contested Visions of American Liberty, 1840-1920; Teaching Assistant

Fall 2010         Feminist Studies 20: Women, Culture, and Society; Teaching Assistant

Spring 2010    Feminist Studies 150: Sex, Love, and Romance; Teaching Assistant

Spring 2009    Ex Post Facto: Journal of the History Students at SFSU; Instructor

Fall 2008         Ex Post Facto: Journal of the History Students at SFSU; Instructor

*Graduate Student Instructor/Associate for Writing 2: Academic Writing — Introduction to academic writing and composition. Writing units focus on analyzing non-academic writing genres, working with scholarly writing in specific academic disciplines, interdisciplinary analysis and developing academic arguments.

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Sample of condolence cards and letters received by the University. Photograph by Claire Bredenoord.

Guest Lectures 

“Careers in Public History,” History 192 DR: Directed Readings in Public History, Isla Vista Community History and Historical Commemoration, May 2015, UCSB.

“We Remember Them: From Memorial Sites to Exhibition,” UCSB Library Presentation, July 2016.

“Memorialization in Photos and in Prose,” Writing 1: Approaches to University Writing, August 2016, UCSB.

“Memorialization in Photos and in Prose,” Writing 1: Approaches to University Writing, October 2016, UCSB.

“Material Culture and the May 23, 2014 Isla Vista Tragedy Memorial Project(s),”  History of Art & Architecture 255G: Studies in the History and Theory of Museums, Toward a Museum of Presences, February 2017, UCSB.

Awards & Professional Activities:

Graduate Fellowships and Awards

2016-2017       Counseling and Psychological Services Intern, Graduate Division Fellowship UCSB

2016                Leadership in History Award, American Association for State and Local History

2015-2016       Margaret T. Getman Service to Students Award, Student Affairs, UCSB

2015-2016       Excellence in Teaching Award Nominee, Graduate Student Association, UCSB

2014-2015       Interdisciplinary Humanities Center, Graduate Collaboration Award, UCSB

2014-2015       Michael Bransfield Prize Best Public History Project, History Department, UCSB

2014-2015       Leslie Griffin Lawson Outstanding Leadership Award, Office of Student Life, UCSB

2014-2015       Fee Fellowships, History Department, UCSB

2011-2012       Distinguished Graduate Teaching Award, Feminist Studies Department, UCSB

2011-2012       Outstanding TA Award Nominee, Academic Senate, UCSB

2010-2011       Travel Grant, History Department, UCSB

2009-2010       Recruitment Fellowship Recipient, History Department, UCSB

2008-2009       Graduate Honoree, History Department, San Francisco State University (SFSU)

2008-2009       Graduate Distinguished Scholar Award, College of Social Sciences, SFSU

2008-2009       Ex Post Facto Editor Award, History Department, San Francisco State University

2007-2008       Markowski-Leach Scholarship Recipient, San Francisco State University

2006                Public Interest Certificate with Distinction Golden Gate University School of Law

2005                CALI Award for Excellence in Sexual Orientation and the Law, GGU

2004-2005       Farella, Braun and Martel LLP, Diversity Scholar Recipient, Public Interest Law

2004                CALI Award for Excellence in Appellate Advocacy, GGU School of Law

2004                Moot Court Board, Golden Gate University School of Law

2000                College Honors, University of California Santa Cruz

1999-2000       Chancellor’s Undergraduate Internship Program, UC Santa Cruz

1998-1999       Alumni Association College Service Award, University of California Santa Cruz

We Remember them exhibit. Memorial to 6 Isla Vista Shooting Victims done by Melissa Barthelemy.

Exhibit case from We Remember Them: Acts of Love and Compassion in Isla Vista exhibit.

 

Public History Experience

June 2014-Present Ad-Hoc Memorial Preservation Committee Chair and Project Manager:

  • Created May 23, 2014, University of California, Santa Barbara and Isla Vista Memorial Archive housed in the Department of Special Research Collections at the UCSB Library. Contains thousands of artifacts, digital images and documents.

Fall 2014-Summer 2015 Curator, Project Manager, and Practicum Supervisor for Exhibit:

  • We Remember Them: Acts of Love and Compassion in Isla Vista. An exhibit created for the one-year memorial anniversary of the Isla Vista Rampage of May 23, 2014.
  • A healing and educational space that focused on community responses.
  • A 6,000 square foot exhibit spanning eight display rooms that was visited by more than 1,800 patrons. This makes it the largest exhibit in the University’s history in terms of both size and visitation.
  • Collection project and exhibit are student-run endeavors with the majority of the labor provided through undergraduate internships for course units and volunteers.
  • Project received Leadership in History Award from American Association for State and Local History, the most prestigious recognition for achievement in the preservation and interpretation of state and local history.
We Remember them exhibit. Memorial to 6 Isla Vista Shooting Victims done by Melissa Barthelemy.

Origami crane artifacts hanging in the We Remember Them: Acts of Love and Compassion in Isla Vista exhibit.

 

Winter 2015-Present Committee Member:

  • Isla Vista Love & Remembrance Garden, a self-guided botanical garden that features six metal and wood benches, each carrying distinct designs created by UCSB Art students in memory of the six UCSB students who were killed. The designs were approved by the families of the victims, and each bench honors a particular student. To read more about the Garden please click here.

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Photos of Benches in Isla Vista Love & Remembrance Garden by Bennett Barthelemy.

November 2016-Present Consultant:

August 2015-Present Curator:

  • Tribute Wall for the Victims of the May 23, 2014 Isla Vista Rampage, Permanent Exhibit, Student Health Center, UCSB.

May 2015 Co-Curator:

  • Isla Vista Remembrance Tribute Exhibit: A Special Exhibit Representing the Compassion of Gauchos and Community Coming Together, All Gaucho Reunion, Thursday April 23-Sunday April 26, 2015, Mosher Alumni House, UCSB.

Fall 2014-Summer 2015 Research Assistant, Dean of Humanities and Fine Arts, assisted with documentation and donation of original legislative record books to UCSB Library, Department of Special Collections, and served as consultant for exhibit:

  • Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors Ledger Project and Exhibit For the People By the People: Government at Work in Santa Barbara County, 1850-1950
  • Exhibit was on display in Santa Barbara at the Channing Peake Gallery downtown at the County Administration Building from June 29, 2015 to September 18, 2015.
  • Exhibit was on display in Santa Maria at the Joseph Betteravia Government Administration Building from Jan. 25, 2016 to May 6, 2016.

Scholarly Presentations

“Voices of Remembrance: UC Santa Barbara and Isla Vista Memorial Collection Project,” Digital Poster Session, Oral History Association Annual Conference, October 2016, Long Beach, CA.

“UC Santa Barbara and Isla Vista Memorial Collection and Exhibit.” Digital Poster Session, American Association for State and Local History Conference, September 2016, Detroit, MI.

“Isla Vista Love & Remembrance Garden.” Panel Presentation, Pondering Peace in a World of Turmoil Conference, Pacifica Graduate Institute, September 2016, Santa Barbara, CA.

“Community Building and Activism in the Aftermath of Tragedy.” Panel Presentation, 1st Annual Isla Vista Conference: Our Beloved Community, May 2016, Isla Vista, CA.

“UC Santa Barbara and Isla Vista Memorial Collection and Exhibit.” Digital Poster Session, National Council on Public History Conference, March 2016, Baltimore, MD.

“We Remember Them: From Memorial Sites to Exhibition.” Paper presented at Organization of American Historians Regional Workshop, July 2015, Glendale, CA.

“We Remember Them: Treading Lightly at Memorial Sites in Isla Vista.” Paper presented at Western Association of Women Historians Conference, May 2015, Sacramento, CA.

“Abolishing ‘Yellow Slavery’: Women Reformers in their Quest to ‘Redeem’ San Francisco.” Paper presented at Western Association of Women Historians Conference, May 2012, Berkeley, CA.

2009    “Equal Justice for Some: The Distasteful Legacy of Bowers v. Hardwick.” Paper presented at The Question of Rights Conference, San Francisco State University, September, 2009.

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Painted rocks left at spontaneous memorial sites in tribute of each of the victims. Photograph by Claire Bredenoord.

 

Service to the University and Profession

August 2016-Present, Graduate Student Representative, Graduate Student and New Professional Committee, National Council on Public History

September 2016-Present Representative, Interpersonal and Sexual Violence Forum Meetings

December 2014-Present Committee Member, Isla Vista Love & Remembrance Garden

Fall 2014-Fall 2016 Graduate Student Representative, Organization of American Historians; Voting member, Committee on the Status of Women in the Historical Profession

March 2012-June 2016 Graduate Student Association Representative, Chancellor’s Advisory Committee on the Status of Women

October 2015-June 2016 Representative, Work Group of the UC President’s Task Force on Preventing and Responding to Sexual Violence and Sexual Assault

November 2015-August 2015 Treasurer, Public History Graduate Student Association (PHGSA)

September 2012-June 2014 Graduate Student Association Representative, Office of the Ombuds Advisory Committee

September 2012-June 2013 Graduate Student Representative, Academic Senate Committee on International Education

August 2013-Present, Volunteer, Office of Instructional Development, Teaching Assistant Trainings:

  • Guest Speaker, Helping TAs Manage Conflict and Assist Distressed Students, Lead TA Institute, Friday August 19, 2016
  • Guest Speaker, Experienced Lead TA Panel, Lead TA Institute, Saturday August 22, 2015
  • Campus-Wide New TA Workshop on Teaching to Diverse Learners, September 30, 2014
  • Organized event Responding to the Isla Vista Tragedy: A Guidance Session for Teaching Assistants, May 26, 2014, 2 workshop times: 50 attendees at first, 90 attendees at second         
  • Guest Speaker, Experienced Lead TA Panel, Lead TA Institute, Friday August 23, 2013
  • Campus-Wide New TA Workshop on Teaching to Diverse Learners, September 24, 2013
  • Guest Speaker, Lead TA Panel for International Grad Student TAs, December 5, 2013

May 2008-December 2008 Graduate Research Assistant, History Department, SFSU

August 2008-May 2009 Managing Co-Editor, Ex Post Facto Journal, SFSU

September 2005-October 2008 Volunteer, GLBT Historical Society of San Francisco

August 2003-May 2006 Co-Chair, Queer Law Student Association, GGU School of Law

August 2003-June 2006 Volunteer, Bay Area Lawyers for Individual Freedom

August 2004-November 2004 Legal Intern, City & County of San Francisco, Human Rights Commission, GLBT/HIV Division

August 2003-May 2004 Mentor, Moot Court Board, GGU School of Law

November 2002-May 2003 Volunteer International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission

October 2002-January 2003 Volunteer, Seva Foundation, Eye Charity Working to Prevent Blindness

September 1998-June 2000 Volunteer, Triangle Speakers, Santa Cruz Chapter

September 1997-June 1999 Co-Chair, Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender Network, UCSC

September 1997-June 1999 Volunteer, California Coalition for Women Prisoners, Santa Cruz

September 1997- June1998 Co-Chair, Bi the Way Discussion Group, UC Santa Cruz

April 1999-November 1999 Volunteer, HIV Prevention Program, UC Santa Cruz

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Memorial Paddle Out, May 2014, organized by UCSB Surf Team. Estimated five thousand people in attendance (a thousand in the ocean and four thousand on the shore).

Additional News Articles:

Interview in The Coordinating Council for Women in History newsletter

UCSB Student Newspaper, The Bottom Line, article on exhibit

UCSB Student Newspaper, The Bottom Line, article on second memorial anniversary

UCSB Gradpost Article regarding creation of Memorial Wall

UCSB Library e-newsletter announcing Isla Vista Memorial Project

UCSB Gradpost’s Top 14 Stories of 2014

Political Activism and Event Planning:

Gun Violence Prevention Advocacy: I am the president of Gauchos Against Gun Violence — UCSB, and am a committee member for The Concert Across America to End Gun Violence. You can learn about this movement by clicking here to be directed to the Coalition Against Gun Violence Santa Barbara website or here to read an article in the Independent or here to see us on the local tv news channel. The full video of our concert that occurred on September 25 at the Arlington Theatre in downtown Santa Barbara can found here. I feel fortunate to have been able to work so closely with an incredible group of people including Tipper Gore and Bob Weiss, leaders in the movement for gun violence prevention.

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Photograph by Bill Allen.

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Photograph by Bill Allen of audience holding up cell phones with light to mimic a candlelight vigil.

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Photograph by Bill Allen.

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Photograph by Bennett Barthelemy.

Anti-Racism Advocacy: As an undergraduate student at UC Santa Cruz I became extremely involved in anti-racism work, and specifically educating other White people about racial privilege and the importance of serving as an ally to communities of color. This advocacy work has continued to play a major role in my personal and professional life. As a graduate student at UCSB I have been working closely with the Division of Student Affairs to help address campus climate issues to foster a more diverse and inclusive community. One of the largest events I co-organized was when we brought prominent anti-racist advocate Tim Wise to campus. We only had two weeks to plan the event, since he just happened to be in the area. Nevertheless, we managed to fill our largest auditorium on campus, with over 880 people in attendance. It was a wonderful experience to work so closely with such a great team of volunteers (staff and students), and to be able to share Tim’s insights with our local community. You can read a news article on the event here or open up the pdf of the flier  0001