The department offers students a variety of ways to earn recognition for and apply their work in history. Here, we will detail the fieldwork and internship possibilities we offer, the awards and scholarships students can aspire to, and the honors graduates might attain.
Internships provide students with high impact and hands-on learning opportunities that will prepare them for the job market. As majors apply their learning in history to real-world applications, they also build links between the university and the region. Through internships, student projects can have a lasting impact and convey the knowledge and critical thinking of our field to the broader public. Our department has connections to various regional groups who regularly offer our students these learning opportunities. Historic Huguenot Street and the New Paltz Town historian allow students work right in town. With public or private transportations, students can also take advantage of internships with Vassar Brothers Hospital, New Paltz Rural Cemetery, Gomez Hill House in Marlboro, and the Jacob Leisler Institute in Hudson. We also have had students establish internships at the Hurley Heritage Society, the Ulster County Clerk’s office, the D&H Canal Museum in High Falls, and many other locations. Students can also reach out to historical sites and institutions on their own and the department works with them to formalize the internship for credit. We have had some students with prominent internships in the recent past, such as one at the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, the Museum of the City of New York, the Tenement Museum of the Lower East Side, New York Historical Society’s Center of Women’s History, and the Palace Theater in Albany.
Best Seminar Paper Award and Outstanding Graduates
As our students approach graduation, we formally recognize the work of our top students. Every year, a group of faculty review seminar papers to select the one that best achieves the goals of developing a well-argued and well-researched original work of history. We also choose our top undergraduates and graduates each semester to be recognized in a university-wide ceremony.
The university has a select number of scholarships that our students may be eligible for. We issue calls for student applications through our email list and announce opportunities in classes.
Senior Thesis with Honors in History
For Liberal Arts majors, History provides qualified students an opportunity to research and write a thesis under the direction of a member of the department. Successful completion of the six credit thesis with a minimum grade of B+ in each semester enables students to graduate with Honors in History, a distinction that appears on the College transcript. Candidates for the program need a 3.5 average in history course work, and a minimum of twenty-four credits in history, and approval of the chair of the History Department. Application must be made during the pre-registration of the last semester of the junior year. For further details, consult with the chair of the History Department.