Hello there! My name is Ashley Palazzo and I am a current graduate student at George Mason University in Fairfax, VA. I will be concluded with the history masters program at the end of this course and I am working towards my Masters in Applied History. A bit of background about me is that I graduated from Missouri State University (Go Bears!) in 2018 with my bachelors of science in history education. I currently hold a teaching certificate for secondary social studies education in the state of Missouri. I enjoy studying the Spanish Empire during the colonial period, particularly the Andean Region, although I have become well versed in world history topics through my studies as well as American history through my work in the public sphere. I have been working at George Mason’s Gunston Hall during my time in graduate school as an education assistant and the collections management technician. This past semester I have also been working on two internships, one with the Potomac Appalachian Trail Club in their archives and the other one at Smithsonian Enterprises on building out their online summer courses for teachers. In the past in between my time in school I worked at a historic house museum in Chicago, IL (where I am originally from) as facility manager for two years.
During my time with George Mason University, I have developed an interest for digital history work, specifically digital archiving work. I have learned how to use Omeka to create online archives and exhibits as well as become familiar with the site WordPress and creating blog posts. I have also learned coding skills and photo/video editing skills. Last semester for my final project I digitized and created an interactive map along with corresponding digital exhibits. I am interested in furthering my skills in digital archiving, podcast production, and developing exhibits in the future. My subject interests vary with the current projects I am working on, at the moment I am enjoying learning about the history of the Appalachian Trail as I have been apart of The Green Tunnel Podcast team.
My goals for this course include learning how to bring these digital history projects into other settings for teaching, how to make digital projects accessible to the appropriate audiences, and expand on my current knowledge of creating a digital space for a wider public. I would love to learn how to make physical collections more accessible to the public and how to use in a classroom space. I wish to take the skills that I learn in this course and the DPH certificate program as a whole into archiving work and be able to work on projects to digitize archival and object collections.