Alumni News & Awards 2016–2017

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Brooke Bauer, Recent PhD Graduate, Goes Home to Preserve Catawba Culture

brookeBrooke Bauer grew up listening to the voices of native women sitting in the shade of a huge oak tree in front of her grandmother’s home on the Catawba Indian Reservation. Unlike her grandmother, Brooke was allowed to attend public school. She dreamed of college, but put that on hold and devoted herself to her children.  Dr. Brooke Bauer, 49, is the first Catawba Indian ever to earn a PhD and is now a professor at the University of South Carolina Lancaster, teaching Native American studies and early American history. Bauer humbly expressed gratitude for the many who supported her through the years. “I realize the degree is not only for me,” she said. “It is a way of pushing back against colonialism and oppression to give back to my people.” Bauer’s work and life is the product of hard-working Catawba women. Her thesis showed how the women provided continuity for the Catawba tribe culturally through their pottery and physically with creative land-leasing. Their pottery became an integral part of the Catawba economy from the late 1700s through the 20th century. Today the tribe numbers fewer than 3,000. Dr. Brooke Bauer lived that history, and now she teaches it. Click here to read more.

A Podcast for Historians to Share What They Do and Why It Mattersswq-logo

Bookmark this new podcast The So What? Question from Evan Faulkenbury, recent PhD alumnus and now Assistant Professor of History at SUNY Cortland. The idea for this podcast is simple says Faulkenbury, “conversations between historians about their research and why general audiences should care”. The podcast will cover all fields of history. Listen to Episode 0 for more information and listen to the inaugural episode of “The So What? Question,” where Evan talks with Lloyd Kramer about his book, “Nationalism in Europe and America: Politics, Cultures, and Identities since 1775.”

Alumna Reflects on Russian Scholarship in the US and Europe

A decade after leaving Chapel Hill, Rósa Magnusdottir said she still refers back to much of what she learned while at UNC. While it was a challenge to start writing and thinking academically in English, Magnusdottir credits UNC’s supportive environment and the influence of mentors with easing that transition. “My advisor, Don Raleigh, will always remain an influential figure in my life,” Magnusdottir said. “I had a great relationship with Bob Jenkins, whom I worked with in the Burch Honors Program in Vienna and Bosnia-Herzegovina for two summers. I also learned a lot from all of the people in my entering cohort and am extremely grateful for the amazing and growing network of UNC Russianists.” “I learned a lot about teaching, about being a student and I learned to set high standards for my work,” Magnusdottir said. “The most valuable lesson I took from UNC’s Russian history program was that an internationally recognized faculty can be collegial and supportive.” After completing her degree in 2006, Magnusdottir received a job at Aarhus University in Denmark, where she first joined the faculty as an assistant professor of Russian studies. She then moved up to an associate professorship in Russian studies, and currently serves there as a tenured associate professor of history. Read more here. (Spring 2016)


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