Two weeks later and I'm still thinking about presentations and conversations from the annual NCPH conference, held in Portland. Mira and I tried to see separate panels to allow for more wide-ranging coverage, and both of us were at turns inspired, provoked, and vexed at what we heard (in short, exactly what we hoped for!).
My first panel on Friday (we didn't arrive until Thurs. night) was the roundtable, Promoting Community Engaging with Service Learning. I'd never heard the term 'service learning,' but it refers to "a teaching and learning strategy that integrates meaningful community service with instruction and reflection to enrich the learning exprience, teach civic responsibility, and strengthen communities" (taken from the Learn and Serve Clearinghouse). It's a missive that seems to fit neatly within goals of public history education and practice. The panel was made up of undergraduate educators - Rebecca Bailey from Northern Kentucky U., Katrine Barber from Portland State U., Denise Meringolo from U. of Maryland, Baltimore County, and Gregory Smoak from Colorado State U. - all of whom engage in service learning projects.