Senior Feature: Katie Harken

Katie Harken. Image courtesy of Minnie Goodbody.

Katie Harken, a senior from Waverly, Iowa, is a history major and classical humanities minor with a Greek emphasis. After graduation, Harken plans to attend Simmons University in Boston, Mass. to earn a Master’s degree in library information science with a concentration in archival management. With this degree, Harken is looking to work in a museum or academic library.

To prepare for her future career goals, Harken is the circulation student manager in Curry Library at Jewell.

“Working at Curry Library has reaffirmed my career plans because it has given me real life experience working in the field of librarianship,” Harken said.

When asked about how the pandemic affected her time at Jewell, Harken said it has been very difficult not getting to do things that are a staple of a regular school year and having to adapt to a “new normal.”

“The worst part of COVID-19 had to be having to quarantine in Browning twice, but I am immensely appreciative of the Student Life Staff, Nurses Office and Kiki in the dining hall for doing their best to make life easier for those affected by the pandemic,” said Harken.

The thing Harken appreciates most about Jewell is the close relationships she has developed with her professors because of Jewell’s small class sizes.  One of her favorite classes was Almost History: Fiction in the Ancient World with Dr. Woodruff.

“We looked at modern works of fiction about historical figures and compared it to works of fiction written in ancient times, and I found that really fascinating,” Harken said.

Harken’s favorite part of Jewell so far was getting the opportunity to study abroad in Greece with a Journey Grant. While there, she took Greek Political Economy in Historical Context at College Year in Athens. She used the class as research for her capstone paper, a requirement of her classical humanities minor.

“I researched and wrote about the economic and political roles of women in classical Athens compared to classical Sparta. This topic was interesting to me as I enjoy learning about the history of women, and ancient history is my favorite area of history to study,” Harken said.

Harken has been very involved during her time at Jewell. She is a member of Alpha Lambda Delta, Phi Sigma Iota and Phi Alpha Theta. She was also a recipient of the Ur Pugh award for achievement in the history department.


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