Civil War Institute

Putting History into Action

Root your study of history in famous historical landscapes, examine original artifacts and investigate one-of-a-kind documents. Pursue your passion for the past through paid internships placing you on the frontlines of history. Expand your professional networks through one-on-one mentorship and small-group networking. Engage in hands-on learning by creating your own unique tour for visitors to one of the nation’s most famous Civil War battlefields. Develop your communication skills through conducting oral histories and writing for the web. Explore the relationship between history and public policy through study tours focused on the connections between past and present. Apply your education to the world around you by engaging in thoughtful public dialogue about sensitive and challenging histories. Experiences in the field tap into leadership potential while offering opportunities to sharpen communication skills.

Current Opportunities

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Academic Programs

Staff members at CWI oversee two academic minors: Civil War Era Studies and Public History. Both programs integrate classroom experiences and experiential learning with the power of place, making use of the battlefield landscape & the local public history community as a learning laboratory. Faculty based in the Institute are broadly engaged across campus, regularly collaborating with partners such Special Collections & College Archives, Musselman Library, Schmucker Art Gallery, the Eisenhower Institute, and Center for Public Service.

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Experiential & Professional Development Programs for Students

CWI’s experiential programs equip students with the tools necessary to work on the frontlines of history and pursue professions that value communication, collaboration, and leadership. Paid internship & fellowship programs provide real-world opportunities to practice historical thinking skills and develop a professional skillset, opening new career vistas for exploration. Career mentorship expands students’ professional networks and provides field-specific guidance for resume and cover letter design, interview preparation, and navigating a job search. CWI also serves pre-college students with a passion for history, offering an exciting program for high school students as part of its annual summer conference.

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Public Programs

From its earliest days, CWI has served audiences well beyond the college campus through its commitment to providing vibrant public programming about the history and legacy of the Civil War era. Anchor programs include the annual CWI Summer Conference, held onsite each year in June, and the Robert Fortenbaugh Memorial Lecture commemorating the anniversary of the Gettysburg Address. These core programs are supplemented by a host of short-term or revolving opportunities, ranging from virtual conversations to digital initiatives and special onsite programs.

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