The National Endowment for the Humanities Funded a Summer Seminar for Teachers on the History of the Hoover Dam

Hoover

Donald Trump’s current budget proposal will eliminate government funding for the humanities.  This means that local communities and American citizens will need to come up with other ways to fund programs like this:

Last summer 6-12 grade teachers gathered in Boulder City, Nevada for a week-long National Endowment for the Humanities seminar titled “Hoover Dam and the Shaping of the American West.”

Here is what they experienced:

At Hoover Dam and the Shaping of the American West we will explore the societal consequences (positive and negative) of Hoover Dam’s construction. Throughout the program, leading scholars will guide us in a variety of sessions that center on three central questions: 1) What was the role of Hoover Dam in the development of the American southwest? 2) How does Hoover Dam’s construction reflect broader issues of early 20th century American society? 3) What will the legacy of Hoover Dam be for future generations?

We will examine archival materials such as letters, photographs, and oral histories. We will get the opportunity to explore the damsite itself, as well as Boulder City, Lake Mead, the Boulder City Museum, the Nevada State Museum, and the special collections archives at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. We will learn about the challenges and triumphs of the construction process, as well as the physical workings of the dam and its distinctive architectural design. We will engage such topics as politics, economics, labor history, civil rights, westward migration, and the environmental legacy of US water policy, all through the lens of Hoover Dam. These topics will serve to show that the story of Hoover Dam can be instructional of a variety of humanities-oriented themes that reach well beyond its celebrated feats of engineering.

Learn more here.  This is just one of many programs that the National Endowment for the Humanities provides for school teachers.  Let’s keep the funding coming.  Call your representative in Washington today.

For other posts in this series click here.

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