Recent Graduate News

Lawson Hall Image

January 2017

Happy New Year and Welcome Back!

I hope everyone had an enjoyable break and are ready to dive into their new course work, RA & GTA positions.

As indicated in a previous email; WGRS has been awarded to everyone and should be noted in your Student Center as ‘anticipated aid.’  Please come see me if you have any concerns.

December was a wonderful month where we celebrated the completion of two PhD theses.

Congratulations to Dr. Nicolas Virtue on his dissertation, "Royal Army, Fascist Empire: The Regio Esercito on Occupation Duty, 1936-1943".

Congratulations to Dr. Jeffery Temple on his dissertation, “Like Angels Among Them: John Calvin and The Protestant Pastorate”.

The 5th annual History Department Holiday Fundraiser was a great success! $1,146.95 was raised for Animalert, plus wish list donations. The main office received a thoughtful thank you note from the rescue expressing their appreciation to the department. Thank you to everyone who contributed with donations or bought treats at the bake sale!

Join us today for a Professional Development Workshop/TA Training at 12:30pm in 2270C – Prof. James Flath, & PhD candidates Cayley Bower, Chris White - "Teaching History to Students for Whom English is a Second (or Third) Language" – All are welcome and coffee/treats will be available.

Next Thursday, 12th January the History Department will be hosting an informal Open House for prospective graduate students.  We hope to centre the open house around the Seminar Series time which will allow students the opportunity to meet with faculty and current students.  Please come out to chat with potential grad students!

Want to share some exciting news that involves a conference, research, publication, award, etc? Send me an email!

Have a wonderful day!


December 2016

Heritage Presentation at London City Hall

City Hall Heritage Presentation on November 29, 2016. (L-R) Prof. Mike Dove, Tom Van Dewark, Paige Linner, Jennifer Bate, Mary Spinks, Lilia Lockwood, Grace Evers, Jessica Di Laurenzio, Dr. Mark Tovey, Kelsey Priestman. Also present was Kyle Lariviere (not in photo).


Good Morning and Happy December 1st,

It’s been a busy three months for our graduate students; here is some news about what has been going on this Fall.

Congratulations to PhD candidate Robyn Schwarz for successfully passing her thesis proposal defense in September!

In October we had the pleasure of seeing many of our MA graduates convocate at Alumni Hall; along with Dr. Arthur Gullachsen.  Captain Gullachsen has been accepted as a Military Faculty member in the History Department at Royal Military College of Canada. Congratulations!

PhD candidate Nina Bozzo gave a lecture on Dr. Edwin Seaborn who served as Lieutenant-Colonel of the No. 10 Stationary Hospital established by Western University in England, from 1916 to 1917, and in France, from 1917 until demobilization in 1919.  Her lecture was a part of a plaque unveiling at the Medical Science Building here on campus. Well done!

PhD candidate Frances Henry started off the McCaffrey Series with a talk titled "The best way to serve an Englishman: Sodomy and Race on the HMS Africaine, 1815". We look forward to hearing more talks in the future!

PhD candidate Tristan Johnson was on Gradcast #59: From the Party of Lincoln to the Party of Trump

Our 9 Public History MA students have been busy in and around the London community. If you haven’t connected with them yet; here is a link to their bios:

This past week the Public History students presented to LACH at City Hall for their heritage designation project which centred on Old North London (east side of Richmond St).  Excellent work by everyone!

Congratulations to PhD candidates Carla Joubert, Tristan Johnson and Maksym Sviezhentsev for successfully completing their comprehensive exams.  We recognize the amount of effort and time that goes into the entire process; it can be overwhelming and exhausting, but you all did it! Congratulations!  Thank you to Professors Alan MacEachern, Rob MacDougall, Marta Dyczok, Laurel Shire, Francine McKenzie and William Turkel. Thank you also to Professor Charles Ruud, Marta Dyczok and Rob MacDougall for assisting as Chairs.

Next week  PhD candidate Nic Virtue will be giving a public lecture on his dissertation, “Royal Army, Fascist Empire: The Regio Esercito on Occupation Day, 1936-1943”.  If possible, please join us on December 7th, 1:30pm in SSC 9420 (Dean’s Office) to support Nic!

Feel free to message me any other news so I can share it with the department!


August 2015

Ryan Flavelle has a recent article, "The Battle of 2nd Ypres and 100 Years of Remembrance" was just published in CMH Vol. 24 No. 1."

Post- Doctoral student, Geoffrey Keelan was featured on Gradcast Radio -

Steve Marti successfully defended his PhD dissertation, “Embattled Communities: Voluntary Action and Identity in Australia, Canada and New Zealand, 1914-1918”

Many PhD students are in the midst of researching, including Michael O’Hagan – here is his recent post for his blog – “Museums, Marshes and Mountains – Summer Research, Part 1”

Claire Halstead was a contributor to the recent publication – “Children, Childhood and Youth in the British World.” This book is set to be released in November 2015

Gregg  French will be presenting a paper entitled "'Our Feet May Never Tread the Streets': How American Clubwomen Experienced and Perceived Spain through Imaginary Journeys" at Brown University's "The History of the Future" Graduate Conference in early-October.

Congrats to Public History student, Lauren Abrams who will stay at Library and Archives of Canada after her internship with a short term contract!

Congrats to Public History student, Rachel Pennington who will start a one-year contract as the Administration and Heritage Specialist at the London Heritage Council as soon as her internship there ends!

First, congratulations to all our MA students who wrote their cognate papers.  Everyone successfully passed and have completed the final phase of their degree. Thank you to the supervisors and second readers for their ongoing help & support.

PhD candidate Todd Weiler finished a peer review for a paper on treatment standards for Columbia University’s Yearbook on Yearbook on International Investment Law and Policy.

Congratulations to MA Public History student, Nick Komarnitsky on his being named the new curator of Western's JP Metras Sports Museum! Nick will take over the helm from Ted Hessel, who will be retiring in September. Congratulations!

Congratulations to MA student, Cheryl Fairman, who is the new Overseas Recruitment Manager for Prospero Teaching in Toronto. Well done!

Congratulations to MA student, Alison Brown who starts her new internship in Toronto for the Ontario Legislature Internship Program.

We wish MA students Gordon Vance, Rachael Ward and Courtney Davis all the best as they start Law School this Fall. Furthermore, will look forward to having MA students Carla Joubert and Tristan Johnson back in the department as they start their PhD in History!

July 2015

Congratulations Dr. Douglas Adams!

Douglas Adams successfully defended his PhD dissertation, "The War of the Worlds: The Militant Fundamentalism of Dr. Thomas Todhunter Shields and the Paradox of Modernity."

Congratulations to PhD candidate Jon Malek

Jon Malek attended the 2015 Institute for Philippine Studies Graduate Student Workshop at Ateneo University in Manila, Philippines. This workshop ran from July 26-29, and brought international scholars from diverse disciplines together to share and discuss their research. Papers presented will be submitted to Philippine Studies for consideration. Well done!

Review of: Reinforcing American Exceptionalism in an Era of Multipolarity by Gregg French

Read Gregg French's review of Elizabeth Cobbs Hoffman's American Umpire at the link here.

Gregg French has Signed on to Write Three Encyclopedia Entries!

Gregg will write three entries on "World's Fair Expositions," "The Black Legend," and "Christopher Columbus" for the Encyclopedia of The Atlantic World, 1400-1900: Europe, Africa and the Americas in An Age of Exploration, Trade, and Empires.

June 2015

Canadian Historical Association Annual Meeting, June 1-3, 2015

The Canadian Historical Association Annual Meeting is being held at the University of Ottawa, June 1-3 and our History Department is well represented!

The following PhD candidates will be presenting; Megan Baxter, David Blocker, Peter Kikkert, Jonathan Malek, Steve Marti, Shezan Muhammedi, Robyn Schwartz-Pimer, Christopher Schultz, Jonathan Scotland, Nassisse Solomon, Tyler Turek, Jonathan Weier and Dr. Daniel Heidt.

May 2015

Congratulations to PhD candidate Jonathan Malek

Please join me in congratulating Jon Malek, (PhD candidate, MER/History) who has been selected to be a participant this July with the Institute of Philippine Culture (IPC) International Summer School for Doctoral Researchers on the Philippines. His submitted paper, entitled “Silangan Rising: Filipino Cultural Identity Negotiation,” will be presented to this session

Public History Publication Featured in the London Free Press

This Hour of Trial and Sorrow: The Great War Letters of the Leonard Family has been highlighted in a recent article of the London Free Press (May 11, 2015). To read the article, click here. To purchase the book you can visit or Attic Books - 519-432-7277 

MA Public History Internship Coordinator Mike Dove is pleased to announce this summer’s interns and their host institutions.

Lauren Abrams, Library and Archives Canada, Gatineau, QC

Tamar Cachet, Yap Films Inc., Toronto, ON

Nick Clemens, Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto, ON

Taryn Dewar, Robert Cochrane Lambton County Fellowship, Oil Museum of Canada, Oil Springs, ON&;

Scott Dickinson, Fanshawe Pioneer Village, London, ON;

Nick Komarnitsky, JP Metras Museum, UWO, London, ON

Alex Meyers, City of Toronto- Economic Development & Culture, Museums and Heritage Services Division, Toronto, ON;

Nikki Michienzi, Eldon House, London, ON; Museum of Ontario Archaeology, London, ON

Vasanthi Pendakur, UBC Museum of Anthropology, Vancouver, BC

Rachel Pennington, London Heritage Council, London, ON

Nicole St-Cyr, Fanshawe Pioneer Village, London, ON

Frank Smith, Western Medical Artifact Collection, Department of History, UWO, London, ON

Dominik Svehla, The Royal Canadian Regiment Museum, London, ON

Emily Villars, Fanshawe Pioneer Village, London, ON

26th Annual Canadian Military History Colloquium, 8-9 May - Wilfrid Laurier Univeresity

Hosted by the Laurier Centre for Military Strategic and Disarmament Studies, this annual colloquium features some of our PhD candidates:

WORKSHOP: “Doing Our Bit for Those Who Did Their Bit: Creating a Website to Honour Local Men & Women Who Served in the Great War” Peter Farrugia, Wilfrid Laurier University Brantford; Evan Habkirk, Western University; Geoffrey Moyer, Brantford Public Library

“A man who knows “what he is writing about:” Why we should re-think the reception of Charles Yale Harrison’s Generals Die in Bed” - Jonathan Scotland, Western University

“The Effects of Combat versus Mechanical Unreliability on 1944 German Panther Tank Operational Returns” -  Arthur Gullachsen, Western University

"Not Useful to Veterans" The War Assets Corporation, Military Surplus Disposal, and Veterans Rehabilitation - Alex Souchen, Western University

New Article Published!

PhD candidate Gregg French’s new article has been published!  Conflict and Housing, Land, and Property Rights: A Handbook on Issues, Frameworks, and Solutions by Scott Leckie and Chris Huggins has now been published in the following paginated issue of Human Rights Review: Volume 16, Issue 2 (2015), Page 201-202.  Congratulations!

Entry for the International Encyclopedia of the First World War by Steve Marti

PhD candidate Steve Marti's entry about the "Dominions’ Military Relationship to Great Britain 1902-1914" is up here

Visiting Junior Fellow at University of Keele, Staffordshire, England 

PhD candidate Gregg French has been invited to be a Visiting Junior Fellow at the David Bruce Centre for American Studies at University of Keele (Staffordshire, England) during the summer months. Congratulations!

Guest Speaker for the Ontario Genealogical Society 

PhD candidate Claire Halstead has been invited to give a talk to the Ontario Genealogical Society branch here in London.  It will be this Saturday, May 2, at the Westmount Branch of the London Public Library at 10 am. "We'll Meet Again": The Experiences of British Child Evacuees in Canada During the Second World War.

The 4th Annual Western History Graduate Conference – “Prisms, Paradigms, and Paradoxes”

The 4th Annual Western History Graduate Conference – “Prisms, Paradigms, and Paradoxes” is scheduled to commence on May 1st.  MA students Alison Brown & Cheryl Fairman, along with their amazing committee of graduate students have been working hard to make this another successful event.

Conference Presentation at the University of Michigan

PhD candidate, Gregg French is presenting a paper at a conference at the University of Michigan on May8/9th.  The conference is entitled Disentangling Empire: The United States and the World.

Canadian Battlefields Foundations Study Tour

MA student, Rachael Ward was selected for the Canadian Battlefields Foundation Study Tour in France, Belgium and the Netherlands, a tour funded for 10 students across Canada. It is from May 8th-23rd. Congratulations and enjoy the journey!

Book Review Forthcoming

PhD candidate, Gregg French has a book review of Elizabeth Cobbs Hoffman's American Umpire, which will be published on H-Empire by the end of May. Well done!

April 2015

Vivien Hughes Prize Winner

Congratulations to PhD candidate, Samantha Desroches, on being one of three winners of the Vivien Hughes Prize for her paper on ‘Christmas Mobilized: The Great War and Christmas in Canada’ at the recent  British Association for Canadian Studies Conference.

Guest Speaker in Boise, ID

PhD candidate, Todd Weiler will be speaking at the Idaho State Bar Association, Section on International Law Guest Lecture, Boise ID on April 29th, 2015. He will be speaking on recent developments in US multilateral treaty negotiations on trade and investment.

PhD Candidates Samantha Desroches and Robyn Schwarz-Pimer are off to England!

Desroches and Pimer are going to the British Association for Canadian Studies Conference, which is from April 23-25 in London, England.  Congratulations! Both will present papers – Robyn: 'Our Past in Our Passports?: Canadian Identity and the 2013 ePassport Issue'. Samantha: 'Christmas Mobilized: The Great War and Christmas in Canada'

Congratulations to Dr. Anna Zuschlag!

We are thrilled to announce that Anna Zuschlag has successfully defended her dissertation, "Green Berets & Gay Deceivers: The New Left, The Vietnam Draft, & American Masculinity." Please join me in congratulating Dr. Zuschlag!!

Book Launch, 'This Hour in Trial and Sorrow: The Great War Letters of the Leonard Family'

bookThe Public History program is pleased announce the launch of This Hour of Trial and Sorrow: The Great War Letters of the Leonard Family, a volume of edited letters and contextual essays produced by this year's MA students. Everyone is welcome to attend!

“The war situation is very serious and I fear that the British Empire is launched on a long campaign…” So penned Woodman Leonard in a letter to his mother Alice during the summer of 1914. This Hour of Trial and Sorrow is a collection of wartime letters from the Leonard family of London, Ontario, recounting their experiences during the First World War. All members of this prominent family contributed to Canada’s war effort both overseas and on the home front. The family foundry produced shells for the fight, while the women dedicated their time to charitable causes and relief efforts. Brothers Ibbotson and Woodman served in France and Belgium as officers in the Canadian Expeditionary Force. The Leonard family’s wartime correspondence, supplemented by essays and notes, brings to life the personal impact of war on the people of London.

Congratulations to Lauren Abrams, Tamar Cachet, Nicholas Clemens, Taryn Dewar, Scott Dickinson, Nick Komarnitsky, Alex Meyers, Nicoletta Michienzi, Vasanthi Pendakur, Rachel Pennington, Frank Smith, Nicole St-Cyr, Domink Svehla, & Emily Villars


National Council on Public History Conference, Nashville, TN

Public History MA students, Tamar Cachet, Taryn Dewar, Alex Meyers & Vasanthi Pendakur; along with Professor Michelle Hamilton and Professor Michael Dove attended the National Council on Public History in Nashville, Tennessee last week. We hope you had an incredible time!

Congratulations to Dr. Magdalena Kubow!

Magdalena Kubow has successfully defended her dissertation, "The Origins of the Holocaust Reconsidered: Contemporary Reactions to Genocide with a Focus on the Role of the Foreign Language Press 1926-1945."  Congratulations!!

March 2015

Congratulations to Dr. Timothy Compeau!

We are happy to announce that Tim Compeau successfully defended his dissertation "Dishonoured Americans: Loyalist Manhood & Political Death in Revolutionary America" this afternoon. Please join me in congratulating Dr. Compeau.

Somebody Call the Doctor!

Thank you to the Public History M.A. students in Shanna Dunlop's HIS 9807 class for mounting the new display on the rural practice of medicine. The large 4 case display is entitled: "Somebody Call the Doctor: Rural Medical Practices in the Late Nineteenth Century." It includes objects from the Fanshawe Pioneer Village collection as well as objects from the Medical Artifact Collection.