Assistantships are an excellent way to help pay for your graduate degree and to gain experience outside of the classroom. Many internships involve working as a teaching assistant or research assistant, but there are also students working at Mammoth Cave, the Kentucky Museum, the Gardner House, and on this website. Here are some examples of what Folk Studies students do for their assistantships.
Graduate Assistant example 1: Katie Wynn is Dr. Williams's graduate assistant. Over the course of her time with Dr. Williams she has done research on a country music producer (which took her down to the archives of Country Music Hall of Fame), found pictures for some of Dr. Williams's presentations and talks, written articles for the WKU Arts and Letters Magazine, compiled information for and written up the student of the week, and created and updated the new Department of Folk Studies and Anthropology website.
Graduate Assistant example 2: Holly Hudnall is Erika Brady's GA. She gives the preliminary grades on Dr. Brady's papers, takes care of Dr. Brady's class when she cannot be there, and make sure Dr. Brady's copies and stuff are made and ready for her when she gets to class. She also answers a lot of student questions. Oh, and sometimes she finds Dr. Brady's keys when she leaves them laying around somewhere.
Graduate Assistant example 3: Barbara Ogbonna is the research and teaching assistant to Dr Njoku. She attends Dr. Njoku's undergraduate classes to maintain the attendance and grading registers. On the research side of things, she has been compling bibliographical works about Africa to further the undergraduates students' basic understanding of Africa. She also collects and prints out all available Ahiajoku lectures for Dr. Njoku as that is an area of special interest for him.
Rock House: Hope Hawkins is the GA under Dr. Applegate. She is in charge of packing up, moving, and documenting the Rock House Lab collections.
Radio Producing: Rachel Hopkin makes folkloristic radio programs ranging from four minutes to an hour in length. She has made programs about South Central basket making, Monroe Country BBQ, and the Quonset. Rachel arranges meetings with interviewees, travels, conducts interviews, edits the recordings, and sometimes scripts the shows. Check out the Folk Studies Radio page for more information and clips.
Gardner House: Rebekah Lyons works at the Gardner House. Under the guidance of Dr. Williams she manages the house's restoration and did a large portion of the physical work herself. Under her guidance, they worked on the plaster, woodwork, ceilings, doors, and stairs.
Kentucky Museum example 1: Janice Crane works with Christy Spurlock, Education Curator. She helps out with the education section. This means she leads workshops and even gets to wear a period dress occasionally!
Kentucky Museum example 2: Ginger Brother works with Sandy Stabell, the Museum Registrar and Collection Curator. She does a bit of everything for Sandy. In the past 2 weeks, she helped prepare quilts for the new exhibit (putting on sleeves) and worked on two different research projects for future exhibits, and helped work on a case for quilt exhibit. Last semester, she worked in Past Perfect retrospective collections. She also labels artifacts, which is a long process and can include sewing. Another task of Ginger's is doing general research for Sandy's Clothing classes. Ginger's other favorite job is artifact detective. The systems are not always up to date so she gets to go searching out objects and finding them again.
Mammoth Cave National Park: Sarah McCartt-Jackson works in the curatorial office with WKU Folk Studies grad Terry Langford where she assists with all curatorial tasks.
Graduate Teaching Associate: Jennifer Jameson works as a graduate teaching associate. During the first year, she worked as a teaching assistant for Dr. Evans learning how to teach by example, grading, and getting hands-on-practice. Her second year, she has taught one undergraduate class each semester. Note: the normal protocol would study under a professor for the first year, then teach one class the thrid semester and two of the same class during the fourth semester.
Meaghan Poyer working on her assistantship.
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