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Bright Institute Announces First Cohort of Scholars

Program targets professors of early American history at liberal arts colleges

Bright Institute Announces First Cohort of Scholars of early American history

The newly established Bright Institute at Knox College, a program for professors who teach early American history at liberal arts colleges, has announced its first cohort of 14 scholars.

They will attend a two-week, in-residence summer seminar for three years on the Knox campus. Each year's seminar will be co-hosted by an eminent professor of American history before 1848 and a pedagogical consultant who will help participants turn their research into incisive classroom opportunities. The 2018 co-leaders are Serena Zabin, professor of history and director of American Studies at Carleton College and author of Dangerous Economies: Status and Commerce in Imperial New York (UPenn, 2009), and Joshua Eyler, director of Rice University's Center for Teaching Excellence and adjunct associate professor of humanities.

Every Bright Institute participant will receive $3,000 in research support during each year of the seminar. In addition, the Institute will cover lodging and other expenses.

The Bright Institute at Knox College is a three-year program designed for professors of American history before 1848 at liberal arts colleges from across the United States. The Institute is supported through a trust established by Edwin W. Bright and his wife, Mary Elizabeth Hand Bright, a 1944 alumna of Knox College.

The Institute's director is Knox faculty member Cate Denial, Bright Professor of American History and Chair of the Department of History. She has taught at Knox for 12 years, and her classes have included The History of Birth Control and Reproduction in the United States; Museums, Monuments, and Memory; and Women, Gender, and the American Revolution. She is a first-generation college student who loves to teach and has a particular interest in training future educators to create fun, dynamic classrooms. Her current research focuses on pregnancy, childbirth, and child-rearing among the nineteenth-century Ojibwe and missionary communities at Fond du Lac in what is currently Minnesota.

Denial said the 14 inaugural Bright Institute scholars form an impressive group.

"The participants in the first Bright Institute come from a variety of liberal arts colleges across the nation, and possess a deep interest in teaching as well as a series of active, engaging research projects," she said. "Those projects include work on disability and health in early America, Native nations, African American experiences, and the impact of gender on individuals and groups in multiple locales."

"This is an exciting project, and it is a deep pleasure to share Knox and its commitment to American History before 1848 with so many others."

Here are the names of the 14 scholars, along with their current academic institutions.

  • Catherine Johnson Adams, SUNY Geneseo
  • Courtney Pierre Cain, Lake Forest College
  • Christian Ayne Crouch, Bard College
  • Lori J. Daggar, Ursinus College
  • Jonathan Hancock, Hendrix College
  • Michael Hughes, Augustana College
  • Carl Robert Keyes, Assumption College
  • Angela Keysor, Allegheny College
  • Will B. Mackintosh, University of Mary Washington
  • Tamika Nunley, Oberlin College
  • Monica Rico, Lawrence University
  • Bryan Rindfleisch, Marquette University
  • Douglas C. Sackman, University of Puget Sound
  • Bridgett Williams-Searle, College of Saint Rose

For more details about the Bright Institute and the participants, please visit the Bright Institute webpages

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Printed on Saturday, June 22, 2024