Franklin College Chosen for Public Humanities Initiative

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Franklin College was founded in 1834 Franklin College was founded in 1834

Franklin College is one of 25 Council of Independent Colleges members to be selected for a public humanities initiative to promote student research and address publicly significant issues. 

The inaugural Humanities Research for the Public Good is also designed to highlight the archival, library and museum collections held by private colleges and universities in the CIC. Participating institutions were selected following an application process, with each college agreeing to combine resources with a community organization to engage the public on a certain topic of local interest. 

Franklin College submitted The Primary Pursuit, which engages students in research to benefit local and statewide partners, such as the Johnson County Museum of History and Indiana Historical Society. Students complete research from the Roger Douglas Branigin Archives at Franklin college to find materials to use in the state's K-12 classrooms. The students then make lesson plans and produce assessments for K-12 teachers in civics and U.S. history. 

“This opportunity will provide extraordinary engaged learning experiences for our history students that will have tangible, lasting results for the local and state community,” said Meredith Clark-Wiltz, associate professor and Branigin Chair in History. “It’s the type of meaningful public history scholarship that our program allows every major to have the opportunity to participate in.”

CIC will host a workshop in Washington, DC, on June 26–28, 2019 where Franklin College will be represented by a team consisting of Clark-Wiltz, Assistant Director Jessica Mahoney, and Director of Development Services Betsy Schmidt. Participants will review their successful initiatives and discuss best practices in project management, engaging community partners, developing humanities programs for public audiences, and project evaluation.  A closing workshop is scheduled for 2020 that will include students and highlight the results of the funded projects.

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