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NMSU history professor brings international conference to Las Cruces

Time travelers from around the world will converge in Southern New Mexico later this month as the 9th Annual Bridging Ages international conference gets underway April 15-19, at the New Mexico Farm and Ranch Museum. The five-day event, sponsored by New Mexico State University and the museum, will include international workshops and excursions to historical sites in Southern New Mexico.

Small group dressed in old-time clothing
NMSU history professor Jon Hunner (center), in character as Hiram McDowell as part of his 1912 Time Travel course, does business with the manager of the "general store" as a student looks on. (Submitted photo)

This event marks the first time the International Organization in Historic Environment Education and Time Travels will be held in the United States.

"People will hear from educators and museum professionals from a variety of countries on how they use local historical resources to teach and interpret the past to students and the public in general," said Jon Hunner, professor of history in the College of Arts and Sciences and vice president of Bridging Ages.

The international conference will bring together participants from Africa, Asia, Europe and the United States to explore how history can be used to understand life and society, by bridging the past with the present to improve tomorrow.

"They will also be able to talk with various professionals from the U.S. and from abroad on local cultures and customs and their efforts to preserve that heritage," Hunner said.

This year's theme, "Crossroads with History: An International Conference on Historic Environment Education and Living History," will include visitors from South Africa, Turkey, Italy, Sweden, Finland, Latvia and the U.S.

The conference will kick off with a welcome reception from 5:30-7 p.m. at the Zuhl Museum on the NMSU campus. Light refreshments will be provided by the College of Arts and Sciences and the Office of International and Border Programs, with music provided by the Quattro, a local jazz band.

Registration for the conference is $150. The fee includes admission to the opening reception, all sessions, two dinners and three lunches. The fee for students is $100.

To view a program of the event and register go to http://www.bridgingages.com/international-conferences/usa-2013/program-draft-for-the-bridging-ages-conference-in-new-mexico/.

For more information, contact Hunner at jhunner@nmsu.edu.