News | 22 September 2022

CFA: THI Undergraduate Public Fellowship with Watsonville is in the Heart 2022-23


The Humanities Institute (THI) is excited to announce an Undergraduate Public Fellowship opportunity for Humanities students at UC Santa Cruz to work with Watsonville is in the Heart (WIITH). THI’s Public Fellowships connect students in the Humanities to projects in the community, with the aim of mutually benefiting students and community organizations. Students gain first-hand experience learning about positions outside of the university that build on their studies in the Humanities and give them professional training, while, at the same time, organizations benefit from students’ assistance and academic background. THI’s Public Fellowships foster positive collaborations between the campus and community, demonstrating the value of a Humanities degree for a range of careers.

Job Title: Oral History Intern

Application Deadline: October 13th, 2022

This position has been made available by a generous grant from The Humanities Institute, and as such, only applicants that are declared majors/minors in the Humanities Division of UCSC will be considered. This program is intended to provide undergraduate students with the chance to gain some professional experience in the field of Public Humanities that they can use once their studies are completed. Selected students will be named Public Fellows of The Humanities Institute.

About the Project:

Watsonville is in the Heart (WIITH) is a community-driven public history initiative to preserve and uplift stories of Filipino migration and labor in the city of Watsonville and the greater Pajaro Valley. This academic year (2022-2023), the WIITH team will conduct oral history interviews with descendants of the first Filipinos to settle in the Pajaro Valley in the early twentieth century. The interviews document the struggles, vitality, and resilience of the Filipino American community. The interviews will be preserved in WIITH’s archive–a digital repository for oral histories, photographs, and material culture objects. Presently, there are two THI Public Fellowships for undergraduate humanities students to work with the WIITH team as oral history interns. 

 Job Description:

We are looking for two undergraduate students to assist in the collection and preservation of oral history interviews. Interns with will work directly with UCSC graduate students and WIITH team leaders, Meleia Simon-Reynolds and Christina Ayson-Plank, to conduct, transcribe, and write archival descriptions for oral history interviews. Interns receive in-depth training in oral history methods and interview protocols. They will gain hands-on experience with archival processing using digital tools including and Omeka. They will also engage in scholarly analysis of oral history interviews. Additionally, interns will collaborate with WIITH team members including WIITH and Tobera Project founder, Dioscoro “Roy” Revio, Jr., and UCSC faculty PI’s, Dr. Kathleen Cruz Gutierrez and Dr. Steve McKay, as well as community members and researchers. 

As THI Public Fellows, digital archive interns will be paid $15 an hour. They will be expected to work 10 hours per week from November 2022 until June 2023. Public Fellows may also receive an optional $500 summer research fellowship stipend from THI to pursue a research project of their own that is connected to their work with WIITH. 

Undergraduate fellows will be expected to:

  • Attend oral history training sessions
  • Transcribe interviews using
  • Conduct oral history interviews with local community members
  • Generate interview metadata and write archival descriptions
  • Upload oral history interviews to the WIITH digital archive using Omeka
  • Analyze oral history interviews 
  • Attend weekly in-person oral history team working sessions
  • Attend additional WIITH team meetings 
  • Correspond via email and Slack with WIITH team members
  • Log and submit weekly hours of work 

Additionally, undergraduate fellows may be asked to:

  • Collaborate with the WIITH digital archive, curriculum development, and/or exhibition team
  • Create a digital exhibition of archival materials using Omeka
  • Attend and participate in WIITH public events and presentations

You’re an ideal candidate if you:

  • Are in good academic standing (required)
  • Declared a major or minor in a department in the Humanities Division (required)
  • Are able to work independently and collaboratively (required)
  • Have strong organizational and communications skills (written and spoken) (required)
  • Are punctual with digital communication (via email and Slack) (required)
  • Are able to meet in-person once a week (required)
  • Are detail-oriented and have strong auditory processing skills (required) 
  • Have interests in oral history and archival practices (preferred)
  • Have interests in Filipino American/Filipino history (preferred)
  • Have familiarity working with Google Spreadsheets and Docs (preferred)

How to apply:

Apply by submitting your resume and a short cover letter (no more than one page) answering these questions: Why this job? Why you? Why now?

A tip for writing this cover letter is to consider how this position will further your undergraduate career as well as your professional career once you have completed your education. Feel free to be creative here. Work in the public humanities does not have a rigid framework and innovation and the ability to adapt is a key component.

Once the application closes, there will be an in-person interview process with selected candidates throughout October, with official duties beginning in November 2022.

We are very excited about this opportunity for Humanities undergraduates, and wish you the best of luck in your application!


Students should apply via Handshake using job number 7006938.

If you have questions about the position, please contact Meleia Simon-Reynolds (

Photo of two public fellows at exhibit

THI’s 2022-2023 Undergraduate Public Fellowships are generously supported by the Helen and Will Webster Foundation.