Checking In with the Bethel History Department Blog

Over at AC 2nd, the blog of the Bethel University History Department, we’re in the middle of what my fellow blogger-department chair John Fea might call a “membership drive.” The blog’s been in business for about eight months now, and on the heels of Bethel’s Homecoming we just sent out an e-mail inviting all of our alumni to check it out.Screenshot of the AC 2nd Blog, 10/8/12

So I thought I’d extend the same invitation to my readers, knowing that many of you have a connection to Bethel or work for departments similar to ours and might want to see what we’ve been doing with the blog.

Our primary goals for AC 2nd are to connect better with alumni and to provide them resources for continuing to learn about the past. For example, we regularly publish:

  • A Saturday morning links post (“Weekend Reading“) featuring other news, stories, and posts about history
  • Previews of history-related events and museum exhibitions in the Twin Cities (e.g., this morning we mentioned a couple of plays currently at the Guthrie Theater — one about writers who fled Nazi Germany in the 1930s, and one about the history of civil rights in the United States)
  • A “blog of the month” and introductions to other useful history websites (in addition to our page of recommended links)

We’re also trying to help prospective, current, and former students to discern the value of a history major — in part through interviews with alumni on a variety of professional and educational paths, and with students who have studied abroad and arranged internships. Earlier today I posted some of their answers to the question, “Why did you decide to major in History?

We also have pages on Facebook and YouTube. For readers who have been using blogs, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc. in their departments or businesses… Any advice on how to use newer media?

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