The research of two Michigan State University History students was recently published in the University of Alabama’s Crimson Historical Review. Current senior Rebecca Yeomans-Stephenson and spring 2023 graduate Jacob Novak originally wrote their papers in their undergraduate history courses.
Novak’s “China’s Feminist Movement: He-Yin Zhen’s Embodiment of Genuine Feminism” was written as a term paper for Dr. Yulian Wu’s seminar in Asian history.
“Before I graduated, I submitted my research to the Crimson Historical Review,” Novak said. “It was a crazy time of year with graduation and everything but right before graduation I found out the Crimson Historical Review was considering publishing my paper.”
Novak said getting his undergraduate research published is an accomplishment that he is proud of. “Going through the process of publishing your work can be daunting as an undergrad student but it is totally possible if you are dedicated to your research,” Novak said. “I did my own edits too and while that was time-consuming, it was so rewarding to see my name on my own publication.”
Dr. Wu said that becoming a published author as an undergrad is quite the recognition and demonstrates a student’s passion for their research and the ability to work independently.
“I think this is a tremendous achievement, demonstrating history undergraduate student’s exceptional dedication to learning and their remarkable capacity for independent scholarly work,” said Wu.
Yeomans-Stephenson wrote “Revolutionary Consciousness and Hardening of British Loyalty in Pre-revolutionary Boston” for her Historical Methods and Skills class, which she took with Dr. Michael Stamm in spring 2021.
Yeomans-Stephenson said she didn’t submit her paper for review right away because she began developing a larger research project through the Social Science Scholars Program. In spring of 2023, she submitted the paper for review to four journals and was notified by the Crimson Historical Review that they were interested in publishing her research.
“As someone who has always loved writing, it is very rewarding to have other people, especially intellectuals, interested in reading your work. I am elated that the Crimson Historical Review thought my analysis was worthy of publication, and I am exceedingly proud of the work, thought, and research that I invested into this publication,” she said.
Yeomans-Stephenson said she wants other undergraduate students to know it is possible to publish their own research, and that it takes dedication, hard work, and passion to do so.
“It is important to not give up,” she said. “I know that sounds cliche, but if you keep submitting your work for review, eventually someone will be interested in what you have to say. Additionally, invest ample time in the research process itself so that your final publication is something that you are truly proud of and genuinely want to share with the public.”