Karl Qualls is Professor of History and W. Gibbs McKinney Chair in International Education at Dickinson College. He teaches numerous courses on European history. After teaching a course on modern refugee history for a few years, he realized that his students were most interested in Bosnia. This led him to construct a new course to train students in the history of the Bosnian war and genocide and also in oral history methods so that they could contribute to the preservation of the stories and memories of their Bosnian neighbors for future generations.
Jake DeCarli (class of 2022) at Dickinson College majors in Italian Studies and International Studies with a focus in human rights and global security. He is originally from Greencastle, PA, only 40 minutes south of Carlisle. He is interested in oral history and allowing different groups to tell their own stories. Additionally, as a student who studies human rights, he feels that it is a duty to use his education and participate in this project to elevate and preserve the voices of our Bosniak community in Carlisle. Julz Espensen (class of 2023) is a history major from Lancaster, PA and a World War I and World War II living historian and collector, with the focus on highlighting women’s experiences in wartime, and founded The Roses of No-Man’s Land. Having known little about the Bosnian diaspora, Julz is interested in being able to collect oral histories has always greatly interested her. Being able to and give back to the community through preserving their memories. Julz is very honored to be able to participate in this project.
Mia Romano (class of 2022) is a history major, with a concentration in modern European history. She is from Hamden, Connecticut. Mia is interested in Oral History of the Bosnian Diaspora in Carlisle because of the increasing urgency to remember the war and genocide in Bosnia in the wake of alarming Serb nationalism in the region today. Being a student of history and an aspiring historian has taught Mia that history is all about empathy and this project is the opportunity to put that into practice in a way that serves the Bosnian community in Carlisle and Cumberland County. Drew Murdough (class of 2023) is majoring in International Studies with a concentration on the Middle East and a minor in Arabic. He currently resides in Mechanicsburg, with his family hailing from Carlisle and Newville. He chose to be part of this project in order to get to know the story of members of his community and gain an understanding of Bosnia and the surrounding regions.
Elizabeth Price (class of 2022) is a Russian and History major at Dickinson College. She is originally from Denver, CO., but her family has lived in south-central PA for many generations. She chose to participate in this project because she’s always believed in the value of oral histories and interviews in historical research. Personal accounts provide an intimacy and weight that written documents simply cannot match. In her final semester in Carlisle, she wishes to give-back to the community she has called home for nearly four years in a meaningful and everlasting way. Michael Wymer (class of 2025) at Dickinson college is studying History and French. He is from Shoreline, Washington. The Bosnians in Carlisle and Cumberland County Oral History Project initially garnered his interest because of its emphasis on gathering personal narratives to broaden understanding on a historical process. He finds that oftentimes the scope that historians use to study an event is devoid of emotions because it can rely primarily on observations and facts but not feelings. The opportunity to work with members of a community to get their views on their lives is one that he is excited to have.
Nora White (class of 2024) is an International Studies and Economics double major from Raleigh, North Carolina. She has developed a specific interest in topics surrounding migration and refugeedom. She decided to take this class because of her interest in hearing the stories of displaced peoples, in addition to her desire to learn more about the greater Carlisle community which she now calls home. Nora hopes to aid in the preservation of the unique stories shared through this project. Sam Lavine (class of 2022) is a history major with a social justice concentration and political science minor. Outside of class, Sam has assisted in the creation of Carlisle’s greenhouse gas emissions inventory and Cumberland County’s climate action plan. Sam is also a member of Dickinson’s club soccer team. Sam is from Howard County, Maryland. Sam’s family fled Eastern Europe in the early 1900’s due to the oppression that they suffered as Jewish people. Sam is participating in this project because he empathizes with those who have endured religious discrimination and believes that more people should learn about the horrible things people can do to one another.
Virginia Smith (class of 2023) is a psychology major and a religion minor, with a particular interest in the mechanisms of extreme belief. She is from New Canaan, Connecticut. Virginia came to be interested in joining the Oral History Project after gaining some work experience in science communications (specifically in marine ecology) and growing to love the work of preserving and passing on information that can help promote compassion, education, and change. She is also passionate about oral history as a medium of preserving information because of the inherent power of a personal story. Meron Tekeste (class of 2023) currently resides in Indianapolis, Indiana. He is studying International Business and Management with a minor in Spanish and is also a member of Dickinson Men’s Soccer. Having been born and raised in Eritrea and later moving to the U.S, Meron has experienced immigration and feelings of displacement and this is something that he feels brings him closer to immigrants all over the world. Meron hopes to play a crucial part in recording and preserving the stories of the Bosniak community in Carlisle.