My research has focused on the role of social imaginaries, narratives, and constructions of heritage in shaping cultural identity, values, and policy. By working with community-based museums and heritage/cultural programs at the early stages of their establishment, I seek to understand how the formation of identity shapes a community's internal dynamic as well as their relationship with society at large, especially when their story is complicated by historical trauma or entrenched conflict.
DEGREES (Completed and in progress): Arkansas State University, Jonesboro, AR. Ph.D. student, Heritage Studies (Fall 2017 – present).
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech), Blacksburg, VA. Master of Arts, Material Culture & Public Humanities, May 2017. Final Project/Practicum: “Christiansburg Institute: Managing conflict and creating ‘congregational space’ in a developing social history museum.” Spring 2016-Spring 2017. Project Committee Advisor: Dr. Danille Christensen, Program Advisor: Dr. Aaron Ansell
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech), Blacksburg, VA. Bachelor of Arts, Interdisciplinary Studies, May 2010. Concentration: Leadership and Social Change
RESEARCH INTERESTS: • Restoring “lost” or underrepresented history and heritage sites using the digital humanities • Formation and design of community-based museums as part of cultural reconciliation and economic revitalization initiatives • Social imaginaries and cultural dynamics in community organization and leadership • Violence prevention, mediation, and conflict management
HONORS/AFFILIATIONS: Fundação CulturSintra, Sintra, Portugal, 2011-2012. Associated researcher with the Carvalho Monteiro Special Collection project at the Library of Congress, Washington, DC. ACC Undergraduate Research Scholar Award, Fall 2010, Virginia Tech Phi Beta Kappa, Mu of Virginia Chapter, Virginia Tech Phi Kappa Phi, Chapter 25, Virginia Tech Eta Sigma Phi, Beta Pi Chapter, University of Arkansas Freshman Writing Award, 1991, Arkansas State University