Teaching & Engagement
We actively promote a wide range of oral history community engagement efforts designed to facilitate the use of oral history in classrooms and community settings here at Carolina, around North Carolina, and across the South. The SOHP periodically conducts oral history workshops tailored to fit the needs of a variety of organizations interested in embarking on or improving interview projects.
Our Internship Program provides experiential education in the intellectual, organizational, and practical work of oral history. Here’s what interns do:
- Learn how to conduct oral history interviews, ideally in the context of their respective research projects.
- Engage with graduate students and faculty in core research activities of the SOHP.
- Become part of an interdisciplinary cohort dedicated to reflection, synthesis, and cross-disciplinary communication in a unique seminar experience
- Help the SOHP tell its story through website development, social media management, archival curation, coordination with key partners, and creative initiatives.
- Offer the SOHP the distinct wisdom and perspective of undergraduate students selected in part for their commitment to building history from “the bottom up.”
ORAL HISTORY WORKSHOPS
One of the most exciting aspects of our mission at the Southern Oral History Program is presenting workshops on how to do oral history. Workshops give us a chance to share our own interviewing experience with people from all over North Carolina. We help workshop participants plan oral history projects in their own communities and institutions by offering suggestions on how to select interviewees, how to formulate interview questions, what type of recording equipment to use, and how to present the finished product. In sharing the methodology of oral history, we urge best practices and encourage participants to share their work with future users by archiving the interviews in an appropriate archive.
These training sessions – complemented by our detailed instruction booklet on how to conduct oral history projects – provide one of the program’s most important means of community outreach. Over the years, SOHP staff members have led oral history training sessions in high schools, community centers, retirement homes, university classes, and libraries throughout North Carolina. The interest and attendance at these workshops has been phenomenal, demonstrating a groundswell of grassroots commitment to local oral history projects.
The reach of SOHP workshops has extended to groups interested in researching the history of Episcopal women in the South, a series on environmental issues in eastern North Carolina, and conducting an oral history project focusing on the recent politics of welfare. Closer to home, the SOHP has offered workshops at numerous locations in the Triangle area – including Durham Technical Community College, First Baptist Church of New Hill, and the Chatham Community Library– and presented training sessions to a variety of schools and departments at UNC.
Contact us about scheduling a workshop through the Southern Oral History Program. Workshops are contingent on staff availability and fees (most of our staffers require a modest stipend for workshops conducted outside the university).
For various tips, handbooks, and references to excellent examples and texts, check out our Resources section here.