Andrew Dyrli Hermeling graduated with a B.A. in History from Messiah College in 2006. He taught middle school history, civics, and world cultures in Harrisburg, PA before returning to graduate school at Lehigh University where he received an M.A. in 2014. He is finishing his Ph.D. at Lehigh and is working on a dissertation on British and Indigenous diplomatic relations in eighteenth-century North America. He also produces The Way of Improvement Leads Home podcasted hosted by Messiah historian John Fea.


Anna Strange is a junior History major with a concentration in Administrative Studies. Anna began her research into the social network of a few key reformers in Harrisburg’s City Beautiful movement as part of Dr. Pettegrew’s Digital History class. Working in conjunction with the Office of Diversity Affairs, she is excited about getting hands-on experience in integrating digital practices and historical methods. She’s especially interested in the work Digital Harrisburg is doing regarding race relations in Harrisburg’s history.


Rachel Williams is a senior History major with a Politics minor. She previously served as a research assistant with the Digital Harrisburg Initiative and continues to work with the Initiative as a student fellow with the Center for Public Humanities. In addition to working with the Initiative, she is looking forward to delving into various types of research, taking part in Poetry in Place, and collaborating with the other fellows to accomplish meaningful and impactful tasks for their campus and the local community.


Molly Elspas is a sophomore History major with a concentration in Public History. She is from Frederick, Maryland and has been fascinated with history since her middle school social studies class on ancient civilizations. Looking for a way to work with history outside the classroom, she came to Messiah specifically to study Public History with the hopes of becoming either a museum curator or a documentary filmmaker. She was drawn to the Fellows program because of its work with the Digital Harrisburg Project and its mission to extend the humanities beyond academic walls. She hopes to learn more about connecting with people through the humanities while digging into the history of Harrisburg itself.