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Nora L

- Research Program Mentor

PhD at University College London


US, Middle East, or World History, Memory Studies, Religion, Nationalism, Representation, Cultural Studies, Public History, Oral History


I am a Historian of U.S. and Middle East History. I earned my PhD at University College London, where I wrote a biography of one of the first Middle Eastern immigrants to the United States: an Ottoman Armenian man who left Turkey for New York City in 1834. Prior to my doctoral work, I earned my A.B. in The Study of Religion, and my A.M in Middle Eastern Studies, both from Harvard University. As you can see, I love learning about cross-cultural interactions, as well as how different communities represent themselves and are represented by others. I've enjoyed working with students on all sorts of topics related to International Studies, from US refugee policy to identity politics in India to education policy in China. More about me: I grew up in Bergen County, New Jersey. I love watching TV. I love going to museums. My favorite season is fall.

Project ideas

Project ideas are meant to help inspire student thinking about their own project. Students are in the driver seat of their research and are free to use any or none of the ideas shared by their mentors.

Develop a Webinar

One downside of scholarship is that it is often written for a tiny audience. I love working with students to counter this trend, and develop research presentations that can reach a wider audience. This may mean working to write as simply and clearly as possible, and/or learning to translate your research into formats, such as webinars, that are designed for a general audience. This is a skill you will use for life!

Curate an Instagram account

There's no better way to learn about the power of representing others than to work to represent people yourself. For this reason, in addition to reading key theoretical texts, I'll have you put what you read into practice by taking photos, posting them to a designated Instagram account, and reflecting on your own personal documentary art through a presentation format of your choice.

Write a biography

People love to read about other people. If you're fascinated by a particular person from the past, we can work on researching and writing a profile that you can publish online, or present at a local library or community center!

Conduct an Oral History

Oral history entails interviewing people to better understand their specific experiences, often in the past but also in their present. Oral history is especially valuable for accessing the perspectives of people who are often excluded from more formal archives or documents, such as ethnic or religious minorities, women, and children. Perhaps your parents or grandparents have interesting stories to tell? Maybe their experiences provide a valuable entry point into a larger group history, like that of an immigrant community in your home city? In the end, you could write up your findings as interviews, or combine them into a larger essay.

Teaching experience

I am an Adjunct Professor of American Studies/Global Studies at Manhattanville College. I have also worked as a writing coach and admissions counselor for high school, college, and graduate students. I have worked previously with museum education departments, using discussion-based methods to teach students through art.



Harvard University
BA Bachelor of Arts (2009)
The Study of Religion
Harvard University
MA Master of Arts (2015)
Middle Eastern Studies
University College London
PhD Doctor of Philosophy (2023)
U.S. History

Completed Projects

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