Gettysburg College’s historic location, well-established partnerships with a wide range of museums and historical organizations, and commitment to experiential education provide a solid foundation for the minor in Public History.
What Is Public History?
As a discipline, public history revolves around the politics and practice of preservation and interpretation, in public settings and in conversation with public audiences. A wide variety of subfields cluster under the umbrella of public history, ranging from curation, museum education, and historic preservation to interpretation, documentary film, and archival management.
The coursework for the minor will enhance students’ skills in historical research, cultural analysis, presentation, public engagement, collaboration with community partners, and digital technology. The interdisciplinary curriculum will provide students rich perspectives on the complex relationship between cultural practices, historical narratives, and material objects, and include substantial emphasis on field education and hands-on work. As future professionals, minors will be well-positioned to continue their education on a graduate level, while as citizens, they will be better equipped to advocate for more democratic, intellectually rigorous representations of history in the public sphere.
Students with a focus on Public History can pursue graduate study in history, public history, museum studies, art history, anthropology, library science, film studies, public policy, education, ethnic studies, public humanities, geography, sociology, or American Studies. They can also seek employment in fields ranging from museums, libraries and historic preservation to education, consulting, and government.