What Have We Been Up To? Pt. 3

Summer 2020 caused many of us to change our plans, find new hobbies or interests to fill our time, and explore new and creative ways to connect virtually. Here’s what some of our students and faculty have done this summer!

Kim McGinnis, a senior Political Science major with a Legal Studies concentration, interned for her representative in the 16th district of Pennsylvania, Mike Kelly. “I was a social media intern, and I launched an Instagram campaign called “Youth Movement Monday” which highlighted the talented students donating their time for the Congressman,” she explained. “It was certainly an interesting time, especially when the Congressman contracted COVID-19 in the early part of quarantine,” she said of her experience. 


Mohamed Shokeir, a senior majoring in International Relations and Creative Writing with concentrations in East Asian Studies and Screen Studies, spent time in El Gouna, Egypt this summer. “Egypt is my home. It’s less of a vacation and more of a homecoming.  I’ve been in boarding schools since I was 14, so in a sense, COVID has given me a chance to spend more time with many family members I don’t usually see much,” Shokeir said.  “Despite the disaster that is COVID it has given me a lot of time to self-reflect and spend time with family. For that I’m thankful.” 


Dr. Todd Peppers, one of our very own Public Affairs professors, spent his summer on several different projects, the first of which was a draft of a book manuscript. “It is the story of Russ Ford, who served as the chaplain for Virginia’s death row. My coauthors on the project are Russ Ford himself and my oldest child, Charles,” he explained. He also researched and wrote three articles on US Supreme Court history. “The first looks at the controversy over the fact that the nominee to become the Chief Justice in 1888 (Melville Weston Fuller) had a mustache- which was a breach of court tradition.” The second article looks at the Fuller nomination and criticism related to Fuller’s amateur poetry and was coauthored with Professor Mary Crockett Hill.  “The third article examines the desegregation of the Supreme Court page corps after Brown v Board of Education,” Dr. Peppers said. “My favorite part of these projects – they gave me an outlet for all my nervous energy during the early months of the pandemic!” 

Thank you for joining us during our summer series, we hope you enjoyed hearing what our students and faculty did this summer!


Casey Wilson

Contributing Writer