While we've only just met, I’m going to start out by telling you something you may not have guessed about me before reading this blog post. Ready?
Before getting the opportunity to serve as the Public Relations Intern for the Concordia Archives, I had never paid a visit to the Archives or even really knew about it in the first place.
While this was probably for multiple reasons, I don’t think I ever really linked history as an important and applicable piece to my field of study here at Concordia. Being a Communication Studies/Public Relations major, I really only focused on things happening in the present. Regardless, I decided to take on the position at the Archives. As a college student, I was eager to gain relatable experiences and skills for the “real world” and of course, earn a few bucks as a result. What I didn’t anticipate, however, was just how eye opening of an experience working at the Archives would really be.
After working at the Archives for two semesters now, I have had a lot of great experiences and opportunities. I get to manage our blog and all Archives-related social media pages, interact with current students and alumni with engaging activities like the Photo Recreation Contest, and in general, increase awareness of the Concordia College Archives to the public. While doing all these things is extremely fun and rewarding, the most valuable part of my experience at the Archives hasn’t been work-related. Instead, it is what the Archives taught me about the undeniable value of history.
History is something that people can easily take for granted. We can chose to live our lives not taking into consideration the work and efforts of the people that have come before us. But, when we take the time to learn more about both why and how things came to be, we can see everything a little more clearly. History helps us to better understand why things are the way they are today. It helps to develop, grow, and reflect. It even helps instill in us a sense of pride. Working in the archives has really helped me to better understand both Concordia, and what it means to be a Cobber. People often describe their experience at Concordia as feeling like they are a part of something bigger. Learning about the history of Concordia and the Cobbers that have come before me has really helped me to make sense of that. I now have a greater appreciation and understanding for both the subject of history, and of course, the place I call home: Concordia. For that, I am forever grateful.