Skip to main content

News and Events


Kevin Anthony Fox, Jr.

Graduate Recruitment Coordinator, Villanova University Graduate History Program

Editor, Historically Speaking (

1. What does it mean to be a graduate recruiter?

Being a graduate recruiter in many ways means getting to be the face of the program. As the graduate recruiter, you are the first contact with the program’s prospective cohort of students for the next academic year. I love showing students around the campus and telling them about my experience here. One of my favorite projects was compiling a list of the colleges and universities that have been or might be sources of future M.A. students in History. I enjoy the opportunity to reach-out to students to let them know Villanova could be their future academic home.

2. Is there anything about our program that surprises students?

I think students are generally very impressed when they see the publications by all of our professors in the department, including Dean Lindenmeyr. I also think students are pleasantly surprised to discover the graduate students’ home away from home – the Rofinot Lounge.

3. How has Villanova differed from your undergraduate experience?

Villanova is different than my undergraduate experience at Loyola New Orleans in many ways. At Loyola, although I got to know my professors, here I have gotten to know all of the department’s faculty pretty well. The faculty and students regularly interact and the department fosters a collegial environment. Also, going to a small school for my Bachelor’s degree meant that I was used to taking part in discussions and having professors that assigned multiple books or frequent articles in classes. Nonetheless, the stakes certainly are raised in the sense of cultivating your own learning environment at the graduate level.

4. What is living in the suburban Philadelphia area like compared to the places that you lived in the past?

While it is not the same as living in the city of New Orleans, I probably go to Philadelphia for fun things or academic events more often than I went to the city of Houston when I was living in its suburbs. I definitely go to Philadelphia more often for edifying events than I went to the Las Vegas strip from the suburbs – though I guess I went on several Hoover Dam tours. There are no beaches and not as much hiking as in Hawaii, but there is cool stuff going on in the city nonetheless.

5. What do you plan to do after graduation?

I am exploring opportunities to gain teaching experience next year.  Still, I plan to enter a PhD program sooner than later. My long-term plan is to be a professor and an author. Maybe I will even write fiction or run for public office. I like to travel and I tend to roll with the punches.

6. What is your role with Historically Speaking?

I serve as the editor of the Graduate Student blog called Historically Speaking.  I also write for the blog on a regular basis.  A recent one for which we received great feedback was my op-ed on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.


Andrea Spencer

Lepage Center Fellow, Villanova University Graduate History Program

As the graduate Lepage Center fellow for the 2018-2019 academic year, I have had the exciting opportunity to ‘do history’ outside of the academy. At the Center, our goal is to bring a historical perspective to contemporary global issues. Working alongside the undergraduate fellow, Jubilee Marshall, I help plan, advertise, and execute events like History Career Day, the Histories of Democracy series, and our weekly Lunch at Lepage to help bring the public into conversation with historical scholarship.

As the Lepage fellow, my work is never boring. It seems like every day I have a new task and a new skill to learn or improve. From conceptual event planning to making infographics out of my notes from the Histories of Democracy events for teachers to use in their classrooms, I have a hands-on role in almost everything the Center does.

Surprisingly, my professional background as a digital marketer has been very useful in my fellowship. Because we advertise our events to the public, I can contribute to improving our marketing and lead capture process to get the word out and encourage people to register for events. I also get to put my other professional skills to work, including website UX/UI, blog-writing, and email marketing.

My favorite part of my Lepage Center fellowship is our weekly event, Lunch at Lepage. I get to have conversations with professors, graduate students, and undergrads within and without the History Department, as well as other members of the Villanova community. Each week we guide the conversation with a tweet about a timely topic in the news or scholarship, while always trying to keep a historical perspective. I always leave our lunch having learnt something new and feeling inspired by how important understanding history is to every aspect of life.

MA Graduates

2019 MA Graduates in History

Alexander Balawedjer           Jacob Innis

Caitiane Blazak                     Sara Jolly

Justine Carré Miller               Ari Levine

Vicrim Chima                        Sarah Marcinik

William Christman                 Erik Mickiewicz

Devin Creed                         Thomas Snow  

Steven Dillon                        Andrea Spencer

Kevin Fox                             Madeleine Stout

Emily Heimerman                  Daniel VanHassent

                                             Andrew Zetts

Graduate Students Headed to PhD Programs

Justine Carré Miller (MA ‘19) was admitted with full funding to the PhD Program at Florida State University, studying Early Modern French History. Funding for her program comes from the Institute on Napoleon and the French Revolution (INFR).  

Devin Creed (MA ‘19) is completing a Fulbright research grant in India during the 2019-2020 school year. He will join the History PhD program at Duke University in Fall 2020 where he will study British imperial economic history in a global context, focusing on Ireland and India.

Graduate Student Selected for Fulbright grant

Alexander Balawejder (MA ‘19) was selected as a Fulbright grant recipient and will teach English in the Slovak Republic during the 2019-2020 school year.



Graduate Student Andrew Zetts Shares Lesson Plan on Debating the Civil Rights Act of 1875

Graduate student and high school teacher Andrew Zetts shares the work he did on Debating the Civil Rights Act of 1875, while at his internship this past summer. He explains how important it is for HS history teachers not to rush through Reconstruction at the beginning of the semester. He helpfully explains his use of two critical documents and how to use them in the classroom. Click here to hear the podcast. Want to read the lesson plan? Click here!


Graduate Student Chris Byrd Leads Workshop at Historical Society of Pennsylvania

On March 9, graduate student Chris Byrd, along with Graduate Program Diirector Dr. Judith Giesberg, led a workshop at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania about their project “Last Seen”: Finding Family after Slavery. More than 100 people attended the workshop, which explored the digital resource available for genealogists researching African American ancestors.

This digital resource offers researchers a new tool for telling family stories of separation and survival during slavery, emancipation, and the Civil War. It allows easy access to digitized “Information Wanted” advertisements placed in newspapers by former slaves and United States Colored Troops searching for family members lost by sale, flight, or enlistment.  

The Graduate Program in History is partnering with Mother Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Philadelphia on the project. 

Historically Speaking: Villanova University's Graduate History Blog 

Click HERE to enter the Graduate History blog!


Villanova Graduate Students Featured in Article

Graduate students Blake McGready, Madison Bastress, and Jessica Talarico were recently featured in an article entitled ­How Living In Philadelphia Inspires Three History-Lovers to Pursue Their Master of Arts In History on

Click here to read the full article!


History Graduate Students Discuss Project, "Last Seen: Finding Family After Slavery" featured graduate students Chris Byrd and Maggie Strolle in the article entitled Families torn apart by slavery sought lost loved ones in newly archived ads. Click here to read the full article and hear how Dr. Judith Giesberg and her students are creating this digital archive.

Dr. Judith Giesberg, along with Margaret Jerrido, archivist at Mother Bethel AME Church in Philadelphia, will offer a workshop on researching the data on March 9 at 1 PM at  the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. 


Dr. Giesberg featured on CBS Evening News

On April 18, Dr. Judith Giesberg was featured on CBS Evening news where she spoke about her Information Wanted Project! Click here to watch the segment


History Graduate Student Awarded the 2017 H. Dabbs Woodfin Research Internship

Christina Virok has been awarded the 2017 H. Dabbs Woodfin Research Internship at the Newlin Grist Mill site in Delaware County. In this internship she will be researching the 1742 Trimble house on the mill property. Congrats, Christina!


Contact the Program Director

Lynne Hartnett, PhD

Upcoming Events