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Spotlight - Department of History, Illinois State University Spotlight

Meet our Graduate Assistants


Matt Caputo

Hometown:        Tinley Park, IL

Plans after graduation:   Seek a PhD or join a Non-Profit Organization

Favorite period in history:  Cold War, Contemporary

Favorite historical figure:  Che Guevara, Jimmy Carter

What do you like about being a GA:  I love being around others that share the same passions as me.  I thoroughly enjoy the social and intellectual connections I have made with both students and staff.  Being a GA has also been crucial in my development as a scholar and an educator.

What advice would you give to undergraduates:  Choose to study what you are passionate about.  My least favorite phrase when talking about a career choice is “It’s good money.”  Life is not about the accumulation of wealth.  Do what makes you happy and in the end you will have lived a fulfilling life.


Look for the profile of another History Department Graduate Assistant in a couple of weeks.

News - Department of History, Illinois State University News

Ross Kennedy on The Great War

In the current  Illinois State Report, Ross Kennedy is speaking about The Great War and the 100 Year Anniversary.

Study Abroad in Italy

study abroad Jasper

Assistant Professor of History, Kathryn Jasper, and Assistant Professor of Art History, Lea Cline, are currently leading a study abroad program this summer in Orvieto, Italy.

Students from both the College of Arts and Sciences and the College of Fine Arts are spending four weeks in Italy learning about Italian language, culture, art, and history.  Classes combine traditional lectures and discussions with visits to city monuments and excursions.  The group visits the Vatican and Coliseum in Rome, the Uffizi Galleries in Florence, and the great cathedral of Siena, among other sites.  Through active participation in site visits, cultural exchanges, community events, and classroom learning, students have the opportunity to examine the city of Orvieto and the modern nation of Italy from a historical, artistic, and cultural perspective.

History 320: Lincoln, the man and his times


2014 springfield 1

2014 springfield 2

Students taking Dr. Stump’s History 320: Lincoln, the man and his times class get an up close and personal look at Lincoln sites including Lincoln’s home, his tomb, the Old State Capitol, the museum and Lincoln’s Law Office.

Faculty/Staff Activities & Accomplishments

- Copies of Linda Clemmons book, Conflicted Mission: Faith, Disputes, and Deception on the Dakota Frontier (Minnesota Historical Society Press, 2014), have arrived.

- Suzanne  Broderick received a contract from Rowman & Littlefield for her work, Reel War and Real War, to be included in the publisher’s Film and History series.

- John Freed completed his massive and long-awaited manuscript on Frederick Barbarossa and shipped it off to Yale University Press.

 - Alan Lessoff received the Roger D. Bridges Distinguished Service Award, given by the SHGAPE Executive Council, at the OAH in Atlanta.  He was also an invited panelist for “Writing American History Across Borders.”

- Also at the OAH, Amy Wood was awarded SHGAPE’s prize for best article in JGAPE during 2012-13.  This week she is presenting a paper called, “Mollycoddlers and Chicken-Livered Men: The Problem of the Rehabilitative Ideal in Texas Prisons, 1910-1940″ at the University of Mississippi’s conference on “Mass Incarceration in the South.”

- Continuing at the OAH, Ross Kennedy was an invited panelist for “State of the Field: Reassessing American Involvement in World War I.”  In addition, Ross was interviewed about Ukraine and US/Russian relations by ISU Media Relations for their Office Hours feature in STATEside.  His views can be found at:

- Katie Jasper delivered a paper, “Mapping a Monastic Network: Travel Distance and Time Using GIAS,” at the annual conference of the Medieval Academy of America in Los Angeles.

- Issam Nassar gave a talk on “Photographing the Great War in Palestine” at an international conference entitled “Not all Quiet on the Ottoman Fronts: Neglected Perspectives on a Global War, 1914-1918″ at Bilgi University in Istanbul, Turkey.

- Ron Gifford was once again elected by his peers to serve on the A/P Council.

- Andrew Hartman was an honoree at the CAS Spring Dean’s Address for his Outstanding College Researcher Award.


Robert G. Bone Distinguished Lecturer – Dr. Atina Grossmann

“Remapping Death and Survival: Flight, Displacement, and International Aid for Jewish Refugees during the Holocaust”

2014 Illinois State University

Robert G. Bone Distinguished Lecturer


Dr. Atina Grossmann

Professor, Modern European and German History and Women’s and Gender Studies

The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Arts

New York City

Thursday, April 10, 2014

7:00 p.m.

Old Main Room, Bone Student Center

Grossmann has held fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, German Marshall Fund, American Council of Learned Societies, Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton and the American Academy in Berlin. She has also held guest professorships at the Humboldt University Berlin and the Friedrich Schiller University in Jena.  Grossmann’s books include Jews, Germans, and Allies: Close Encounters in Occupied Germany,  Sex: The German Movement for Birth Control and Abortion Reform, 1920-1950, and co-edited volumes on Crimes of War: Guilt and Denial in the Twentieth Century and After the Nazi Racial State: Difference and Democracy in Germany and Europe


Student Teaching Abroad in England: Brighton University-Eastbourne

Blogs from student teachers in the field.

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Faculty Publications


See faculty publications for a full list of recent publications.

What can you do with a History Major?

More information on careers also available at American Historical Association, ISU Career Center, and Pre-Law Advisement Center

Email History

Department of History
Normal, Il 61790-4420
Phone: (309) 438-5641
Fax: (309) 438-5607

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