Student Research

History graduate students have multiple opportunities to undertake original, primary source research in our program. Whether in research seminars, public history classes, internships, or during the process of writing a thesis, students develop techniques for finding and evaluating archival sources, analyzing their findings, and presenting them in a variety of formats. Verbal presentations, poster displays, exhibit proposals, digital projects, and research papers are just some of the ways our students share their research in professional settings: whether in the classroom or at a VCU Graduate School forum, to local museum boards, or at professional conferences. Students who choose the thesis track will develop an approximately 100-page thesis based on original research that they write during their final year of study under the direction of a faculty advisor. With so many avenues for research, our students have produced a wide range of superior scholarship.

Our students regularly present research at the Virginia Forum, the Virginia Consortium of Early Americanists, the VCU Graduate School 3MT Competition, among other specialized conferences.

student standing in front of her research poster presentation

Alexandra Zukas (M.A. '20) published “A Power So Compelling” in Libraries: Culture, History and Society, Vol. 5, No. 1, 2021.

Alexandra Zumas presenting

Current Thesis Projects

Allison Bell

Allison Bell

"Important but Not Apparent: Virginia Commonwealth University's Student Activism During ERA Ratification and Black Liberation in the 1970s"

Adviser: Carolyn Eastman, Ph.D.

Rebecca Rose

Rebecca Rose

“Jamestown Crossing: A Spanish Spy, an English Ship, and the Seventeenth-Century Atlantic World”

Adviser: Sarah Meacham, Ph.D.

Jennifer Tennison

Jennifer Tennison

“Indigenous Groups and the American Narrative” 

Adviser: Carolyn Eastman, Ph.D.

2020-21 Thesis Projects

David Hayter

David Hayter

"Unite the Left: Contextualizing Bukharin’s ABC of Communism and Berkman’s ABC of Anarchism"

Winner of the 2021 Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award for the category of Humanities & Fine Arts

Adviser: George Munro, Ph.D.

Benjamin Smith

'The American Press': Changing Narratives in a Time of Revolution

Adviser: Carolyn Eastman, Ph.D.

Will Tharp

Will Tharp

'Savage and Bloody Footsteps Through the Valley': The Wyoming Massacre in the American Imagination

Adviser: Carolyn Eastman, Ph.D.