Oregon State University Libraries and Press

Kassena Hillman Oral History Interview, February 19, 2021

Oregon State University
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00:00:07 - Verbal Consent

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Partial Transcript: "So, today is February 19, 2021, I'm here virtually with Kassena Hillman, my name is Sydney Klupar and this interview is being video recorded as a component of classwork assigned to the course 'The Hidden History of Women at OSU'."

Segment Synopsis: Klupar introduces Hillman and asks for her verbal consent to conduct the interview.

00:01:01 - Family and growing up in New Jersey

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Partial Transcript: "Alright, so let's get into it. So, why don't you tell me a little bit about where you grew up?"

Segment Synopsis: Hillman describes her childhood in small town New Jersey. She discusses her childhood love of the outdoors and her relationship with her sister.

00:04:38 - Childhood Dreams

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Partial Transcript: "Moving forward a little bit, when you were growing up, what did you feel was your calling? What did you want to do?"

Segment Synopsis: Hillman further discusses her love of the outdoors and sports that she played growing up and her childhood dreams of becoming a professional baseball player, a member of the Coast Guard or a chemist. She describes how she never quite felt like she had a "calling", but that it's not necessarily a bad thing.

00:07:25 - Playing Baseball as a Child

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Partial Transcript: "I thought I could play professional baseball, I was pretty darn good, definitely was not going to make a baseball team"

Segment Synopsis: Hillman discusses her years playing baseball for many of her formative years. She discusses the ways she was treated differently as the only girl in her little league and how she adjusted to softball when mandated to do so.

00:12:29 - Going to Drexel University and Photography

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Partial Transcript: "Let's move on to your bachelor's degree and photo as what you seemed to focus on then, do you remember when photo started becoming a part of your life?"

Segment Synopsis: Hillman recounts on what led her to choose Drexel University, and a degree in photography. She describes what the program was like and her experiences as a female photographer.

00:23:15 - Master's Degree and Teaching

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Partial Transcript: "Ok, so then moving forward, what inspired that transition to instruction?"

Segment Synopsis: Hillman describes the time in her life directly after her Bachelor's Degree. She discusses getting a Master's Degree in instruction, desire to work with middle and high school students, and her struggle to find a permanent job after getting her degree.

00:33:29 - Moving Abroad

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Partial Transcript: "So, then with your decision to go abroad, did you guys have a plan or was it just 'fly by the seat of your pants'?"

Segment Synopsis: Hillman details her time in New Zealand, Vietnam, Thailand, and Spain. She describes her experience participating in Worldwide Opportunities on Organic Farms.

00:48:22 - Moving Back to New Jersey

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Partial Transcript: "Did you go back to New Jersey or did you go back to Portland?"

Segment Synopsis: Hillman discusses her time reacclimating to life in the US, struggling to find a job, getting a job at a travel agency.

00:51:46 - Getting a Job with the Honors College

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Partial Transcript: "...and then at some point my husband started working harvest here and so he was here six or seven months before I was"

Segment Synopsis: Hillman outlines her motivations for working with the Honors College, how she got her job there, and how Hurricane Sandy affected her cross-country move.

01:00:59 - Path to Teaching Again

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Partial Transcript: "As you got more established in it and started becoming that academic advisor, how did you start teaching again?"

Segment Synopsis: Hillman describes her path back to teaching.

01:02:41 - Women in Academic Advising and Higher Education

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Partial Transcript: "Do you feel like your office and your field more generally is pretty women dominated?"

Segment Synopsis: Hillman speaks on her experience as a woman in higher education and how she feels things need to change.

01:09:13 - Best Part of Academic Advising

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Partial Transcript: "Honestly, I want to ask you, what is your favorite part about your job?"

Segment Synopsis: Hillman recounts her favorite parts of her job and why she likes to help students. She also discusses how her job differs from other types of academic advisors.

01:16:23 - Closing Thoughts

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Partial Transcript: "That's about everything I have, do you have anything else you'd like to add, any final thoughts?"

Segment Synopsis: Hillman leaves with some parting thoughts.