Commonwealth Center for the Humanities and Society (CCHS)


Student Testimonials

Jakia MarieJakia Marie—Louisville Free Public Library
An internship is meant to provide an experience where one utilizes their knowledge and skills in a practical way. Working with the Iroquois Library provides much more. I had the opportunity to work with the Iroquois Library as the African Immigrant and Refugee Programming Intern. In this position, I was able to combine by knowledge gained in Anthropology and Pan-African Studies and put them into practice. I was able to assist the library with their weekly programming and other community outreach, and I was also able to learn about myself. My primary duties were supporting the English Conversation Club because it is the most popular program on Saturdays. I also provided support at other library programs and various community events. Working with such a diverse population helped me grow as an individual and global citizen. I was able to learn more about the experiences of others from around the world and reflect on how my positionality impacts them and their daily lives. This internship has helped me learn how to be a better community member, and I have learned more about the needs of others and strategies to support our international community in Louisville. Anyone who wants to be challenged to be a part of something bigger than themselves while making a positive, direct impact in the community should highly consider interning with the Iroquois Library. The value of this experience cannot be fully articulated with words, but the impact of this internship can never be forgotten.


Cassidy MeurerCassidy Meuer—Filson Historical Society
My name is Cassidy Meurer, and I am a senior this year at the University of Louisville. I am a BFA candidate in Photography and Printmaking, as well as an English major with an interest in creative writing. My scholarship is heavily influenced by historic processes, documentation, and the translation of perspective and storytelling, so having the opportunity to work as the Photograph Collections Intern at the Filson Historical Society has been the perfect introduction to understanding how all of my passions can translate into a professional setting outside of my education. For the past four months, I have been working with Heather Potter, the Photograph and Print Curator at the Filson, on cataloging the Filson’s massive photograph collection. I have gained a greater understanding and appreciation for archival practices through this process, learning how to properly rehouse and preserve visual materials, as well as how to file the collections in an appropriate way so that in the future, researchers will have easy access to the materials, either online or in person. Because of my interests in curatorial studies in addition to visual material cataloguing, Heather allowed me to have a hand in the curatorial process as she prepared to open the recent exhibition on Enid Yandell. I was able to witness a great deal of the planning and preparation that goes into curating an exhibition, as well as offer some hands-on help by contributing to the selection the materials to be included, image resizing, graphic design, and organization. The show opened June 7, which is after my internship formally ended, but I returned as a volunteer to help with the installation and to see this process through the end. Looking forward to post-graduation, my experience at the Filson has definitely opened my eyes to potential career paths. I have fallen in love with the work I am doing here, and I am considering pursuing these practices at a graduate level. I am so proud of the work that I’ve done thus far at the Filson and I cannot wait to return in the coming Fall semester as an intern to continue the cataloging process.


Elizabeth StandridgeElizabeth Standridge—Filson Historical Society
As a Commonwealth Center for Humanities and Society intern at the Filson Historical Society during the Spring of 2019 I was able to work with professional archivists learning the ins and outs of archival work. I worked under the direct supervision of the Associate Curator of Collections, from whom I learned fundamental archival practices and how to process collections. I had the unique opportunity of helping to process several fascinating collections including a diary from the 1830s, a civil rights activist’s papers, and a family’s postcard collection that spanned over fifty years- to name a few. My internship at the Filson provided me with hands-on experience with archival material, as well as invaluable professional advice and I look forward to being able to continue as an intern in the Fall!

Tiffany CaesarsTiffany Caesars—Locust Grove
What was it like to be a slave at the historic Locust Grove, built in 1790 and where pioneer and Revolutionary War hero George Rogers Clark resided in the last years of his life? Tiffany Caesars research yielded two original short plays performed during her internship at the home. The experience opened my eyes to how performance could be combined with history to make the past come alive, said Caesar, a 2010 masters student in Pan-African studies.


Brandon ReintjesBrandon Reintjes—Speed Art Museum of Art and Culture
Now curator of art at the Montana Museum of Art and Culture at The University of Montana in Missoula, Brandon Reintjes credits his internship at the Speed Art Museum with a vital role in determining his career. The 2009 masters degree graduate in critical and curatorial Studies packed a diverse range of projects from writing exhibition text to constructing 13-foot high walls. It was far from dull, said Reintjes, who worked on projects with various departments throughout the museum.


Christian PotterChristian Potter—Asia Institute—Crane House
Christian Potter combined language skills, interest in Asian film and social networking talents to produce one of the most successful Asian Film Series ever for the Crane House and UofL in his internship. They made me feel like part of a dedicated team, Potter said. I was able to see the direct impacts of my work as they fit in a nonprofit organization and within my community. A 2010 graduate, Potter is coordinating Crane Houses Teaching in Asia program and plans to move to China to teach English.