The New Normal? Integrating Career Pathways in History Graduate Education

AHA Session 223
Sunday, January 5, 2020: 1:30 PM-3:00 PM
Nassau East (New York Hilton, Second Floor)
Emily Swafford, American Historical Association
Derek Attig, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Julia Kent, Council of Graduate Schools
Patricia Mooney-Melvin, Loyola University Chicago
Jeffrey P. Shepherd, University of Texas at El Paso

Session Abstract

While the contours of doctoral training and career outcomes have never been static, norms of disciplinary training and expected employment have been strong and influential throughout the end of the twentieth century and into the twenty-first. The introduction of public history nuanced the nature of graduate training and expanded potential outcomes but the fundamental curricular structure, culture and mindset of departments and graduate students that took shape after World War II remains alive and well. Changes in the landscape of higher education and efforts to learn more about the careers of our graduates has revealed an increasingly diverse career environment and has triggered a re-examination of our approach to doctoral education. This round-table will engage participants in a discussion of insights from the Council of Graduate School’s Career Pathways survey, the AHA Career Diversity initiative, and broader career and professional development efforts. It will also address the cultural and curricular transmission of mindsets in addition to skills, and the opportunities for graduate directors and faculty to implement programming and curricular interventions designed to re-imagine doctoral training in history. The session will build on career diversity discussions from previous conferences and offer the opportunity to explore the opportunities and challenges that attend the emergence of a “new normal” history graduate education.
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