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History Department Libraries and Archives Internships
The internship program for the History Department at the University of South Florida is designed to support student majors as they obtain on-the-job experience in public history and related fields with community partners throughout the Tampa Bay area. As USF Libraries Special Collections is one of the more popular destinations for History interns, this led the RPT for History, Matt Knight, to take over the “Libraries and Archives” section of “HIS 4940 Internships in History” beginning in Fall 2019. This is a graded, three-credit course that has been submitted for consideration as a “High-Impact Practice” course for the Enhanced General Education program at USF. HIS 4940 is also an officially designated Service Learning course, and the “SL” attribute will appear on students’ transcripts in association with the course. (Service Learning courses ask students to engage with, and learn from, interactive and reciprocal work with the community). HIS 4940 is open to graduate students, although a future Internship course exclusively for History graduate students is currently in development.
Students’ onsite work is supported and supplemented by regular course meetings, selected readings & discussion, and the completion of a related research project at the close of the term. The intent is to help students to contextualize their onsite work within the broader field, and better apply their training as History majors to their future career goals in libraries and archives. Students and their host institution have an opportunity to extend the internship into a second semester, for a maximum of six credit hours. This is a perfect partnership between the Libraries, the History Department, and the community, and further demonstrates the value of the RPTs positioning the Libraries in the curriculum, the community, and the classroom.