"My service as an academic follows the contours of my teaching and scholarship. As a teacher I encourage my students to think about the link between the past and the present; as a scholar I act on that assertion. Beyond formal academic discourse, I strive to create community dialogues that inform our understanding of urban issues."

Hannibal Square

I work to fuse community engagement with my approach to teaching history in the classroom.  As a teacher/scholar, I balance the learning experience of my students with engagement in the community. My efforts are guided by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching's definition of community engagement as a “partnership” between educational institutions and the public “to enrich scholarship, research, and creative activity; enhance curriculum, teaching and learning; prepare educated, engaged citizens; strengthen democratic values and civic responsibility; address critical societal issues; and contribute to the public good.”  With this in mind, I create digital history projects that examine community history in Hannibal Square, the historic African American District in Winter Park, Florida. While the focus remains consistent, my project based approach uses assignments designed to align course content and learning outcomes to engage the community.  The project history below document this engagement. Use the links to learn more about each project.

Urban Bulletin Audio Documentary Project exploring the Hannibal Square Community Land Trust (from HIS 347 History of Urban America course): Defining the C in CLT , Alternative Sources: The Community Land Trust, and Compare and Contrast Housing in Winter Park.

Advocated Recovered (From HIS 265 Topics: Digital History course): An African-American Newspaper Recovery Project

The Hannibal Square Reporter (Applied History project with Kenneth Cox '16): A Historical Simulation exploring the detachment of Hannibal Square from the town of Winter Park in the 1890s.

Digital Flashback 1890s (from HIS 120 Decade of Decision 1890s course): A digital simulation using roleplaying to re-create political discourse in 1893.

The Gentrification of Hannibal Square (A digital companion project from HON 302 Research Methods):  In this digital companion project the student researcher effectively uses Google maps to create an interactive overview of how city ordinances shifted the character of the Hannibal Square community.

Rethinking the City 

RTC is dedicated to building a dialogue within our community and with changemakers around the country about the forces that shape cities and how we can participate in positive change in our own city through arts, design, engagement, service, and enterprise. As one of the curators for RTC, I work to integrate traditional academic narratives with concerns present in our community.  Visit our Facebook page for next meeting and click on the links below for select recordings from previous meetings.

RTC: A Conversation with Dr. Alex Cummings

RTC: Our Map of Hannibal Square

RTC: The Share Economy

RTC: The Neighborhood as Sustainability Engine

RTC: Sports and City

RTC: From Russia with Love (Start time 4:37)



Every Tongue Got to Confess Podcast

ETGC is hosted by Professors of History Julian Chambliss (Rollins College) and Robert Cassanello (University of Central Florida). In the same spirit as Zora Neale Hurston - famous African American novelist, short story writer, folklorist, and anthropologist - this podcast explores the experiences and stories of communities of color. All podcasts are brought to you by The Association to Preserve the Eatonville Community (the official sponsor of the Zora Neale Hurston Festival of the Arts and Humanities) as well the Department of History at Rollins College and its Africa and African American Studies Program.



Opening Plenary of the 2017 Communities Conference at Rollins College

Confess Blog

A companion project to Every Tongue Got to Confess, the Confess Blog explores questions of community and the humanities.


The Communities Conference Photo Archive

A photo archive documenting the Communities Conference co-sponsored by Rollins College and The Association to Preserve Eatonville Community.


2017 Rollins Faculty Immersion