Welcome.

TEACHER | WRITER ADVISOR  

Hello! I’m Bethany J. Hopkins, PhD. Here’s a little about me and my work.

Storytelling is at the heart of everything I do. Whether it’s a history lecture, a news story, or a student resume, I am always looking to find the narrative that resonates.

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I have been teaching undergraduate students since 2015, when I graduated from UC Davis with a PhD in History. If I can spark intellectual curiosity, encourage critical thinking, and foster an inclusive environment, I call that a successful classroom. Currently, I am an instructor for a course on careers in American culture at UC Davis. I have also taught American women’s history, U.S. history, and California history at UC Davis, as well as U.S. women’s history at Solano Community College. Teaching is educational storytelling, and I want my students to be as engaged in that story as possible.

Writing has always been a part of my professional life. I aim to make my written work clear, concise, and tailored to my audience. Currently, I am working on an academic book manuscript based on my dissertation The Fruit of Her Fields: California Women in Commercial Horticulture, 1870-1915. (Read my in the Western Historical Quarterly here  [paywall] or read a post I wrote on the Rural Women’s Studies blog here) I have also written for a general audience. My first career was as a reporter for the Santa Barbara News-Press, writing feature stories and breaking news. (Read some of my clips here.) In recent years, I told several personal stories at Shorts N Longs, a community storytelling event founded by Lisa Cantrell. (Listen to me emcee the event here, or tell a personal story here.) I love the challenge of finding just right the narrative arc to hold my audience’s attention from beginning to end.

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Most recently, I’ve been working as an advisor, guiding students to craft their own stories in the form of meaningful college and career choices. As a senior career advisor at the UCD Internship and Career Center, I connect students to immersive educational experiences like internships that guide them on their career path. It’s a joy to encourage students as they challenges themselves to see these experiences as part of the larger narrative of their professional life. I also am a writing coach for high school seniors through The Key Worldwide, a private college and career and counseling company. I love using my knowledge of narrative to help students craft personal statements that reflect the essence of who they are and where they’re going.
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Humans are narrative creatures: we understand ourselves through the stories we tell. I have found that a narrative approach to both work and life has served me well. After all, we all have a story tell.

 

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