History students attend the Lebanon Valley College December Graduate Reception

Research Possibilities

The History, Politics & Global Studies Department offers many exciting opportunities for students to engage in high-impact student learning experiences by working with their professors in student-faculty research projects. Students can receive course credit and hone their skills in gathering, analyzing, and interpreting primary historical documents and secondary works, and presenting their findings at prestigious regional and national academic conferences.


Student & Faculty Research


Dr. Rebecca McCoy headed up a faculty-student research project to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the College's founding. Students and faculty have researched written texts and the project also has involved finding and collecting documents from storage and offices around campus to deposit in the archives, ensuring that LVC's history is preserved. In Fall 2016, the research focused on the history of women and multicultural students.


In April 2015, Dr. Chris Dolan took five Global Studies students to the New York State Political Science Association conference at SUNY-Plattsburgh. There, they presented two collaborative student-faculty papers on human security in contemporary security studies. The students were Erin Eckerd, Marie Gorman, Genevieve Hugenbruch, Sarah Meinhart, and Kayla Zimmerman. Kayla and Marie presented their paper (co-written with Dr. Dolan) entitled "Human Suffering and the Broad Human Security Concept: Theoretical Assumptions and Applications to Iraq."

With the generous financial assistance of an Arnold Grant in Experiential Education, Dr. Michael Schroeder and six LVC students conducted research in the first half of 2015 in two major repositories. This research was related to Dr. Schroeder's project on the Sandino rebellion in Nicaragua (www.SandinoRebellion.com). On the first trip, student researchers Nikki Wilhelm, Katie Yost, and Olivia Edwards worked with Dr. Schroeder for three days in early January at the Marine Corps Research Center in Quantico, Virginia, sifting through and digitizing select personal papers and photographs of U.S. Marines who served in Nicaragua in the 1920s and 1930s.


In March 2015, student researchers Morgan Yealy, Erin Eckerd and Becky Sausser traveled with Dr. Schroeder for two days to the U.S. National Archives in Washington D.C., researching select correspondence and military reports that shed new light on the period of U.S. intervention in Nicaragua in the interwar years.

"Getting my hands dirty in the archives was totally awesome," remarked Sausser after her return. "Just handling all those old documents was something I'll never forget." All of the students agreed that this experience advanced their historical understanding. "I have a much better sense of how historians actually work," said Yealy.


In Spring 2014, Courtney Escudero and Dr. Chris Dolan co-wrote a paper entitled "Soft Power and Cultural Exchange," which they presented at the International Studies Association meeting in Toronto, Canada.


In the 2012-13 academic year, Dr. Diane Johnson worked with Haisam Hassanein on a project on the Coptic Christian minority in Egypt. Using sources in English and Arabic, their jointly-produced research paper traced the history of the Copts from their origins to the present, and analyzed the evolution in the relationship between Copts and Muslims. Haisam presented their paper to the North American Undergraduate Conference in Religion and Philosophy at St. Francis University in March 2013. The paper demonstrated that today’s conflicts are rooted mainly in 20th-century political changes, rather than religious differences. It also showed that it is important for scholars to consider the cultural norms of a society from within, in order to fully understand developments in that society.

In Fall 2013, Dr. Chris Dolan and two LVC students co-authored papers that they gave at the Northeast Political Science Association meeting in Philadelphia. Dr. Dolan and Erin Eckerd presented "U.S.-Russia Relations since the End of the Cold War," and Dr. Dolan and Genevieve Hugenbruch presented "The Global Politics of Legitimate Action and Critical International Relations Theory."


In the 2011-12 and 2012-13 academic years, Dr. Michael Schroeder worked with more than a dozen students under the auspices of an Arnold Grant in Experiential Education on his digital historical archive project on the Sandino rebellion in Nicaragua in the 1920s and 1930s. Students undertook a wide range of research tasks, including transcribing and translating primary documents, building interactive digital maps, and taking several research trips to the U.S. National Archives in Washington D.C. LVC student researchers included Giovanna Ortiz, Katheryn O'Hara, and Erica Laufer.

In Fall 2012, Dr. Chris Dolan and four LVC students presented their collaborative research at the International Studies Association-Northeast meeting in Baltimore. Genevieve Hugenbruch and Susanna Chehata and Dr. Dolan presented "Internet Political Activism in the Arab Spring," and Ashley Ferrari, Katheryn O'Hara and Dr. Dolan presented "Gender, Feminism, and Political Advocacy."