The SMCM Library, Archive & Media Center Student Employee Class of 2019 had the opportunity to select an item that was meaningful to them during their time at St. Mary’s. They then posed for a portrait with that item and shared a bit about why it’s important to them.
Not pictured: Jacob Bartholow, Jeremiah Basler, Kathryn Herberger, Marisa McCormick, Cassandra Youshaw
A Film and Media Studies major with a Religious Studies minor, Dirk Dupre has a passion for filmmaking and video production. Previously a double major in religious studies, he was inspired to declare the major after taking classes with Dr. Meckel focusing on Indian religion and modern India (but opted for graduating on time in May over the double major!).
Religious Studies brings another perspective to Dirk’s work with film, and Dr. von Kellenbach’s Religion and Ecology class had a direct influence on his film work. The class inspired an idea for an SMP related to religion, the environment, and surfing by framing environmentalism in a new way. Though Dirk would still like to pursue this idea, he ultimately decided to hold off on the project. “It would take years just to learn enough about surfing for the project,” Dirk says.
While he considered film schools, Dirk decided a liberal arts school would provide a broader education, along with the analytical and philosophical perspectives of classes in the humanities. SMCM happened to make the best offer, and the rest is history. Even though SMCM was chosen based on practical considerations, Dirk has enjoyed getting to know the people here and the beautiful campus. By necessity, he has learned to find things out for himself and seek film production opportunities beyond campus, experiences that challenged him to take initiative. Along with Media Center colleague Kevin Glotfelty, Dirk made a short film to practice filmmaking techniques and experience more of the technical elements of film production.
Dirk has worked with the Media Center for nearly 2 years, beginning during his sophomore year. After spending a lot of his time in the Media Center working on film projects, Justin Foreman mentioned an opportunity to work on a PFP project that Dirk was eager to participate in. Working with a team, Dirk has been producing, editing, and filming one minute videos to highlight the different majors at SMCM. He also helps students working with Photoshop or video production in the LAMC’s 3rd floor.
What has kept Dirk at the Media Center for so long? The staff has been supportive and invaluable in terms of providing creative feedback and professional advice. Justin has worked as both a supervisor and mentor, sharing practical advice about putting together demo reels, and giving student employees a sneak peek at his current projects.
When not behind the camera, Dirk is often at the mic hosting a radio show with Kevin or climbing the rec center’s rock wall. In addition to resetting the college’s climbing wall every semester, Dirk helps with rock climbing competitions held in the fall and spring semesters.
After graduation, Dirk plans to relax and enjoy bicycling along the C&O Canal starting from the Washington, DC area. He would like to continue working in DC with the film production company where he completed his internship. Ultimately, Dirk has his sights set on a city with a bigger film scene, like New York, Los Angeles, or Atlanta. He’d later like to find his own crew and make documentaries.
Can Dirk be a true film major without recommending a film or two? Of course not! He suggests the documentary Free Solo, which follows the journey of a free soloer* attempting the first such climb of El Capitan in Yosemite. Dirk is also a fan of the highly stylized 1990s teen film Trust directed by Hal Hartley.
We’re sad Dirk is leaving the LAMC team soon, but we can’t wait to watch his documentaries!
*Free soloing: rock climbing by yourself without a harness
As a Film and Media Studies major with a minor in English, Kevin Glotfelty has spent a lot of the past 4 years in front of the screen, behind the camera, and onstage.
Growing up, Kevin learned to love films, spending a lot of time watching movies with his dad. If you’re looking for a film recommendation, some of Kevin’s favorites include The Lobster, Dead Man (an acid Western), and Audition (a Japanese horror film). When deciding on the major, Kevin chose film because of his love of movies and interest in learning about the behind-the-scenes of film production.
While studying at SMCM, Kevin has especially enjoyed Mark Rhoda’s Horror Film class as it made a horror fan of him by framing the genre as a way to look at and understand contemporary society. Garrey Dennie’s classes have also been rewarding because of the instructor’s knowledge and insight into African studies. Specifically, Kevin highlights Africa and the African Diaspora and Redemption Songs, the latter of which makes interesting connections to reggae music.
Kevin is currently completing a nature documentary for his SMP, which focuses on the conservation of salt marshes in St. Mary’s County. The film will address why these ecosystems should be conserved, what we can gain by protecting salt marshes, and what may happen if we do not.
In his free time, Kevin participates in Philosophy Club, hosts The Lit Hour on Wednesdays on Seahawk Radio, and has played a role in SMCM productions including Machinal, Spring Awakening, and Happy Birthday, Wanda June.
Kevin is a Marylander from Bowie, though his mother is a St. Mary’s County local. When considering colleges, Kevin was looking to stay in-state, but hadn’t seriously considered SMCM or even been to visit. He decided on a whim to attend and doesn’t regret it.
At the LAMC, this spring marks Kevin’s 4th semester working in the 3rd floor Media Center. As someone with an interest in cameras and sound equipment, Kevin enjoyed learning about the equipment and services available there. After getting to know supervisor Justin, Kevin was able to get paid to do what he already enjoys. When new equipment comes in, Kevin relishes the opportunity to “play with the toys.”
Kevin will graduate at the end of spring semester in May 2019. After graduation, Kevin plans to find freelance production work in the Washington, D.C. area, eventually moving on to Atlanta. Though he’s not looking forward to the heat, Kevin finds the film production opportunities in Atlanta exciting, as well as the Southern food and trap music.
We will miss Kevin when he leaves St. Mary’s and the LAMC, but we’re looking forward to seeing his name appear in the credits of many a film on IMDb!
Caitlyn Gerwitz is a library student employee of many talents and interests, characteristics that are reflected in her choice of studies. A Biochemistry major with a minor in Dance, Caitlyn expects to earn her Bachelor’s of Science in the fall of 2019. She is currently working to complete an SMP exploring the prevention of rust on aluminum and metals. Don’t be discouraged if this goes over your head: the project is an expansion of Caitlyn’s year and a half of research on the Pax River Naval Base to investigate preventing rust in aircraft materials. If the project continues as expected, the results will literally go over everyone’s head (except perhaps Caitlyn’s).
Caitlyn comes to Maryland from across the pond; though from Westminster, Maryland, she came to St. Mary’s from England. After a friend clued her in about SMCM, both decided to attend the college together. When considering colleges, SMCM stood out as a lovely, inclusive campus that was close to family. As a graduate of a small school, Caitlyn hoped to attend a small college, and was interested in the Pre-professional Pre-Vet program at St. Mary’s.
As a student employee who has worked with us for 3 years, Caitlyn helps the staff in Collections Support Services (CSS). CSS is the area of the library that includes Cataloging and Technical Services, which handles much of the behind-the-scenes work of the library by managing new books, journals, and other print materials, organizing them, and preparing them to be checked out by patrons.
Caitlyn feels she lucked out in the job search–when looking for on-campus employment, she really clicked with her supervisor, Cheryl Colson. In addition to a sweet supervisor (who bakes excellent cakes!), Caitlyn appreciates the relaxed environment, where she can work at her own pace to process all of those new materials with care.
On top of working and studying on campus, Caitlyn is involved with several extracurriculars, including InterChorus, an acapella group, and a Pre-Vet club. When she gets a chance to visit her family in Georgia, she enjoys spending her time with her dog, Toby, who she admits would not make a good campus pet with his loud bark and high energy.
After her graduation in December, Caitlyn plans to attend veterinary school at Ross University. In addition to its gorgeous Caribbean setting, Caitlyn can get all of the insider information from Cheryl’s daughter, a graduate of the university’s veterinary program. Ultimately, Caitlyn’s goal is to start an animal rescue. I think we can all agree the immediate vicinity of SMCM would be an ideal location for
us to enjoy cuddles with cute animals the wellbeing of the animals.
While we will miss working with Caitlyn after her graduation, we are grateful for all of her hard work as a student employee and excited to see that animal rescue open!
Student employee Zane Loeb has worked in libraries for a while; when he introduces himself, you can tell immediately. “It’s Z-A-N-E like Zane Grey,” he says, alluding to the prolific Western writer. “Or like Zane the erotic writer,” he adds matter-of-factly.
When considering colleges, Zane was drawn to SMCM’s beautiful campus, small class sizes, and the opportunity to develop personal relationships with faculty. Now a senior, Zane will be moving onto bigger things in the spring. First, he will wrap up those last few classes needed to earn a BA in history with a German minor. Having completed a study abroad program to Germany, Zane has put those German skills to use. While in Germany, Zane’s mother and sister visited to find Germany’s best Riesling even if they had to visit every last winery enjoy the pleasure of Zane’s company.
Zane has always enjoyed history, and his interest in the subject helped him succeed in class. The history major offered additional intrigue through a History of Piracy class tracing the colorful lives of adventurers like Bartholomew Roberts. The instructor shared rare historical documents with the class that few get to see. One of the memorable tasks students completed was to watch the first Pirates of the Caribbean movie (“the good one,” Zane clarifies) and rewrite it to be more historically accurate–though the skeleton pirates could stay.
The study of history aligns well with his goal of becoming a librarian. After working in a library during high school, Zane decided it was a place he could see himself long-term. A library veteran, Zane has been working at the LAMC for 3 ½ years–longer than some of our newer full-time members of staff! The job has been a good opportunity to gain practical experience in a different library setting. Additionally, he has enjoyed helping people solve problems, whether locating a particular book or troubleshooting a printer malfunction.
Though happy to help library patrons, Zane would like to share the following PSA about his library pet peeve: please remember to put unwanted books into the shelving bins and throw away those Daily Grind cups. Or at the very least buy us a coffee too.
When not in class or staffing the library’s circulation desk, Zane can be found participating in Fencing Club; if it’s nice outside, you’ll spot the fencers out on the tennis courts.
As for the future, there are a couple of library science programs Zane is considering close to his hometown of Columbia: University of Maryland College Park or Catholic University. Though we’ll miss Zane when he graduates from SMCM, we’re happy he will soon join us as a colleague in librarianship, the field of glamorous, successful people!
Library student employee Cam Kelley is quick to recognize everyone on campus she considers “a delight of a person.” Happy to talk about her English major and minor in Theater Studies, Cam takes obvious pride in the SMCM community and the ways we support each other. According to Cam, she is an English major because “I like to have a little joy in my life!” The minor in Theater provides an interesting lens to approach the English major and to enjoy the collaborative process of theater. She has especially enjoyed JCB’s Victorian Adaptations and Leah Mazur’s Costume Design class.
Currently a junior planning to graduate in the spring of 2020, Cam will continue studying at SMCM for an additional year as she earns a Master of Arts in Teaching. While working at a preschool for the past two summers, Cam discovered how much she enjoys working with kids, resulting in her decision to pursue the Master’s degree. Ultimately, Cam hopes to teach at an elementary school and become a published novelist.
Though born in the area, Cam has lived for several years in Wisconsin. Cam has close ties to campus; her parents held the baby shower for a fetal Cam at Queen Anne Hall.
Among the many colleges Cam toured while selecting a school, SMCM stood out. She remembers talking to Robin Bates for almost an hour about some of the exciting SMP projects students were researching. In addition, SMCM stood out as a place full of life and character.
Cam has worked at the library for 1 year, since the fall of her sophomore year. With librarian parents, it was kind of inevitable. Cam remembers years spent keeping herself entertained in the quiet reading area while her parents worked. After briefly considering working at the Daily Grind, Cam decided she prefers books to making coffee and enjoys the chill environment of the library. Besides, everyone at the library is so nice (and we didn’t even have to pay her to say so!). As a bonus, Cam relishes the opportunity to meet virtually everyone on campus and learn about what others are reading and researching.
In addition to her role as a student employee at the library, Cam is a fellow for SMART, the Sexual Misconduct Advocacy and Resource Team. SMART provides a 24/7 sexual misconduct hotline and hosts events on campus to provide sex education to students. Essentially, SMART aims to make sure everyone on campus feels comfortable and safe, and knows where to turn if they don’t.
Cam will complete an SMP that focuses on modern-day monsters and how they represent the fears we have retained over time, as well as those we no longer experience. She will combine her interests in creative writing with her research skills to create an SMP that is part fiction, part essay.
As far as the future is concerned, Cam has many ideas. She may pursue a PhD and a future as a professor or focus on elementary literacy. Either way, you can be fairly certain Cam will be writing. We’re looking forward to reading that novel; in the meantime, we’re glad to have Cam working here at the library with us!
The SMCM Library, Archive & Media Center Student Employee Class of 2018 had the opportunity to select a book from the collection that was meaningful to them during their time at St. Mary’s. They then posed for a portrait with that book and shared a bit about why it’s important to them.
Jerome Burley (graduated Fall 2017)
Mike Connaughton (graduated Summer 2017)
For Senior Hannah Murphy, education and teaching have always been among her top interests.
Born in Annapolis, Hannah grew up in Owings, Maryland after her family moved there when she was in the third grade. Foreshadowing her later interests, she took Spanish all throughout high school, reaching the AP level.
When it came time to pick a college, Hannah looked to smaller liberal arts schools and those with historical settings including Hood College and the College of William & Mary, as well as St. Mary’s. While there were many factors that influenced her decision – including the MAT program, scholarship funds, and the fact that SMCM was her grandfather’s favorite out of all the colleges she visited – what sealed Hannah’s decision to come to St. Mary’s was the great experience she had spending a night here as a prospective student. And on top of that the beautiful waterfront setting didn’t hurt. “Can’t discount pretty,” Hannah says.
Hannah began working in the Archives the fall of her Junior year. The previous summer, she had interned at the Calvert Marine Museum sorting, cataloging, and scanning photos and negatives. She really enjoyed working with the staff there as well as the general atmosphere and was looking for an additional on campus job when she saw the Professional Fellowship Program position open up in the Archives. Her job duties range from sorting and cataloging incoming materials, to cataloging the images on the college’s Flickr site, to assisting the Archivist with research about the college. Her favorite thing about working in the Archives is helping to preserve the history and make it accessible to the community, now and in the future. Through working at the Archives, she has gained quite a bit of knowledge about the history of St. Mary’s, which came in handy when a visiting parent asked her questions about the college.
In addition to her job in the Archives, Hannah worked as an RA in Queen Anne and Caroline residence halls, and is currently the RHC for Waring Commons where she oversees a staff of seven RAs and serves as liaison between the students, RAs, and the Office of Residence Life. Through working as an RA and RHC, she has had to mediate quite a few roommate disagreements, mostly over things like room temperature and lights.
She also spent the Spring semester of her Junior year studying abroad in Granada, Spain. Hannah highly recommends study abroad, saying it’s “awesome and everyone should do it.” She really enjoyed living in a Spanish speaking country for a few months totally immersed in the language and culture.
As a Spanish major with minors in Ed Studies and History, Hannah will be entering the SMCM MAT program in the summer, focusing on becoming a middle or high school Spanish teacher (she just passed her Spanish Praxis exam!). Her interests in Spanish and Ed Studies led her to focus her SMP work on English Learners, a group that doesn’t necessarily get the resources it needs. Her SMP looks at addressing critical thinking skills among English Learners. Her project is based on the Common Underlying Proficiency theory – which posits that cognitively demanding tasks (like critical thinking) are common across languages, despite the surface differences between languages that we observe. Using this theory, Hannah developed a Spanish Enrichment program at Spring Ridge Middle School that helped five English Learners address critical thinking skills, such as identifying the main idea in a text, by reading articles in their home language. Hannah believes that the home language should be seen as a resource when gaining these critical thinking skills, which are more important for the students to grasp than learning them in English. By the end of the six week program, the students showed greater proficiency in learning these critical thinking skills and were able to identify the main ideas in a text.
Hannah will be presenting her work at the 2018 National Conference on Undergraduate Research in Oklahoma City, and hopes to continue this project through her MAT master’s thesis in addition to possibly working with Dr. Katy Arnett to continue the program with St. Mary’s students through the Spanish department or the course ESL Across the Curriculum (EDUC 491). She is also considering getting certified as an English for Speakers of Other Languages teacher. Post SMCM MAT program, Hannah hopes to work in Frederick County, Maryland which has a quickly growing Latinx population.