Doctoral student earns national honors

The work of Trevor Blank, an American studies doctoral student at Penn State Harrisburg, has earned national honors from the American Folklore Society.

Blank has been awarded the 2009 Richard Reuss Prize for Students of Folklore and History which goes to the “best paper produced by a student on the history of folklore studies,” the 120-year-old organization announced. His winning work, titled “The History of the Hoosier Folklore Society, 1937-2007” also has been published in The Folklore Historian, a leading chronicler of folklore studies.

The American Folklore Society, founded in 1888, is a 2,200-member association of people who study and communicate knowledge about folklore throughout the world. It is headquartered in Columbus, Ohio, at Ohio State.

Blank, who holds a bachelor of arts in American Studies from the University of Maryland and a master of arts in Folklore from Indiana University, also is the editor of "Folklore and the Internet: Vernacular Expression in a Digital World," which has just been published by the Utah State University Press. Folklore and the Internet is an examination of the folkloric qualities of the World Wide Web, e-mail and related digital media. It shows that folk culture has been a key, since the Internet’s beginnings, to language, practice and interaction online.

The volume contains a set of new essays from various contributors, including Simon Bronner, distinguished professor of American studies and folklore at Penn State Harrisburg.

The newest of three doctoral programs at Penn State Harrisburg, the American studies program welcomed its inaugural class of students this fall.

Last Updated December 15, 2009