An important milestone of the program, the senior thesis process begins in the spring semester of the junior year and continues through December of the senior year, when students publicly present their thesis papers to professors, classmates, friends and family. Working with the same professor and classmates for the two semesters, students choose their own topic, conduct original research and write a 20-25 page paper.
History majors have the opportunity to receive money from Salve’s McGinty Fund to assist with the cost of conducting archival research in the United States and abroad during the summer between their junior and senior year. Our students have conducted research at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, the Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library in Austin, Texas, and the Massachusetts Historical Society in Boston, to name a few examples.
Recent senior thesis topics have included:
- “A Harvard Plan for the Working Class Man: Judge W. Arthur Garrity and the Boston Busing Crisis”
- “The Ultimate Treasure Hunt: The Monuments Men and the Salvage of Nazi Plundered Art in Paris”
- “Eyes Full of Light and Fire: John Brown’s Raid on Harpers Ferry”
- “Americans Abroad: Post-Atomic Age Changes in International Education
- “A Voice for the Oppressed: Eleanor Roosevelt’s Advocacy of the Civil Rights Movement”
- “Persistent Anti-Semitism in the United States: A History, 1920-1960”
- “Jews, Palestinians and the Founding of Israel: A Misremembered Past”
- “Lee’s Old Warhorse: How General James Longstreet Became the Confederate Scapegoat”
- “Where the Other Half Lives: Progressive Era Tenement Reform in New York’s Lower East Side”
- “The Resistant Warrior: Woodrow Wilson’s Difficult Decision to Enter World War I”
- “Lessons Learned: How the Albany Movement Set the Stage for Later Civil Rights Victories”
- “The War Behind the Trenches: British Nursing During World War I”
- “My Suffering Seems Insignificant: Bobby Sands and the Northern Ireland Hunger Strike”