Welcoming my SHA Classmates to Indianapolis!
Posted by Eleanor Batic, Indiana Historical Society
We are about to embark on the day of field trips that will shape our fourth day of study with the 2013 class of Seminar for Historical Administration. I realize that we still have more than two weeks to go, but frankly, if it ended now, I would have already felt this to be an incredible experience. As a participant based at the Indiana Historical Society, home base for the SHA classroom, and a resident of Indianapolis, the hosting city, I feel a tremendous sense of pride for the amazing museum work being done locally that can be used as a living classroom for students of the field. I am looking forward to seeing the President Benjamin Harrison Home and the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art today through fresh eyes, all the while thinking about the big picture questions raised by our presenters thus far.
So far talks by Spencer Crew, Katherine Kane, Estevan Rael-Galvez, Jim Vaughn, Ken Turino, and Elee Wood have all raised fascinating points and hit on issues both that I struggle with currently or realize that I will encounter in the future. Starting out with a discussion about why we went into the field of history in the first place (and how wildly that varies for even the small sample present in my classroom), was a wonderful validation of the choices I made more than 15 years ago when I decided to pursue this career.
The SHA class of 2013 is only beginning the learning opportunities that will unfold in the next few weeks. I am proud to welcome my fellow classmates and faculty to the city of Indianapolis and look forward to unpacking a Midwestern city’s approach to the public history field through the eyes from professionals from some of the nation’s top organizations. Already, just four days in, I am hitting my pillow each night intellectually (and in two cases so far, emotionally) exhausted, but so excited for that alarm to go off so that I can begin a new day. I am so grateful for this opportunity and cannot wait to continue on this adventure alongside my SHA classmates and partners in this journey.