In preparation for the 2018 Pohanka interns’ dispersal into the field for the summer, they gathered in April for a lively discussion of the fundamentals of historical interpretation. CWI’s Pete Carmichael and Jill Ogline Titus led the group in a conversation on the importance of big questions, place, context, site-specificity, and complex and concurrent narratives. Special guest Stan McGee of Harpers Ferry National Historical Park, a close friend of Brian Pohanka, shared some of his memories of his friend with the group, providing the students with a better understanding of Pohanka’s life and legacy. Veteran intern Anika Jensen ’18 followed with some reflections on the way that her understanding of Pohanka’s legacy infused her summer work in the field and helped her to find new clarity in her career interests.
The evening concluded with a shared dinner in Specialty Dining, where the veteran Pohanka interns in the group shared their experiences and advice with the first-timers. In just a few short weeks, these students will be giving their own programs in interpretive settings ranging from Georgia to Massachusetts. Follow their summer adventures on CWI’s blog, The Gettysburg Compiler.