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Public History Internship – Samantha Smith

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Historic preservation requires having the right tools for the trade. 


Samantha Smith
, a recent graduate of the MA Public History program, started her internship at Preservation Durham in July 2014 with an extensive toolkit. Transcription, interviewing, researching, Microsoft Excel, HPOWEB GIS mapping, and Adobe InDesign, were just a few of the skills and tools Samantha honed while assisting in the development of Preservation Durham’s 2015 Home Tour.

Samantha wrote an excellent piece on her internship experience at Preservation Durham on her website.

From tedious transcription and reconciliation work in Excel to conducting research across the Triangle with organizations like the American Institute of Architects, Wilson Library Special Collections at UNC, and the North Carolina State Historic Preservation Office, Samantha did it all. She even created an exhibit based on her work with Preservation Durham’s Home Tour, which was put on display at the Museum of Durham History in April 2015.

Samantha described her experience as “amazing.”

“I got experience working with a nonprofit, which I loved. I also had the opportunity to create my very own exhibit! Overall, great experience,” she said.

Samantha’s advice for future Public History interns?

“Apply to several internships before you decide on one and get advice on internship opportunities from your professors.”

Samantha Smith graduated with her MA in Public History in May 2015. She is the recipient of the History Department’s Public History Award.

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