The Historian of The Commonplace Society of Berkeley College is the keeper of the society’s memories. During each meeting the historian will take notes in order to write a brief synopsis of the night’s events. The historian should be someone who is organized, enjoys writing, commands a keen eye for detail, and has a dry wit or, at the least, an ability to offer some amusement through their writing to the members of the society.
The purpose of the Berkeley Commonplace Society is to serve as a supportive and festive venue for seniors to share their intellectual and artistic pursuits with their fellow college classmates. Toward that end, the historian should note who the evening’s presenters were, the name of their presentations, the names of those who introduced them, and a little something about the type of questions, or ensuing dialogues, that occurred after each presentation. The Historian will also receive an abstract of each presentation from the Advertising & Communications Coordinator who solicits those from each presenter prior to their presentation. The abstract should also accompany the notes.
If various milestones are toasted during the evening such as gaining admission to graduate school, securing a job, learning that a member has been accepted to some kind of service (civil or military), or that a member received a grant, award, or funding of some kind, the historian should note these so that they can be duly documented in the e-mail summary that will go out to all members in the following days after the meeting.
In general terms, the Historian should see themself as the person who keeps an important record not just for that year’s Society, but for future Berkeley College Commonplace gatherings and for those who might enjoy reading about the discussions and presentations that ensue each evening.
Some accounts may be longer than others, but in general, the Historian should write a few paragraphs at the minimum, and at most a page, after each meeting. The Historian should then post the notes to the Commonplace website blog.
As a member of the Commonplace Society Leadership Council, the Historian will need to arrive 30 minutes prior to each event in order to assist with setup.