February 8, 2016

Getting a GRIP on Education

Here in the middle of winter, the long, hot days of summer seem far away. I don't want to say they'll be here before you know it, because I see no need to rush time. But there’s a great opportunity to sharpen your genealogical skills coming up this summer. And now’s the time to reserve your spot for it.

The Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh, widely known as GRIP, will open registration for its first 2016 session on Wednesday, February 10 at 12:00 noon EST. There are six courses to pick from for that first session, which runs June 26-July 1:
  • Family Archiving: Heirlooms in the Digital Age
  • Fundamentals of Forensic Genealogy for the 21st Century
  • German Research Resources
  • Master the Art of Genealogical Documentation
  • Pennsylvania: Research in the Keystone State
  • Women and Children First! Research Methods for the Hidden Members of the Family

Instructors include Tom Jones, Judy Russell, Warren Bittner, Michael Lacopo, Denise Levenick, and Cathi Desmarais, to name just a few. You can read about the June course offerings here; click on the course titles for more details.

I'm happy to announce that I'll be co-teaching a couple of classes in Denise Levenick’s course, Family Archiving: Heirlooms in the Digital Age. You might know Denise as The Family Curator, and the author of How to Archive Family Keepsakes and How to Archive Family Photos. This is the first time she’s offered a course in family history preservation, and I'm vey excited to be a part of it. Students will get hands-on experience and be encouraged to work on their own ideas during the course, so they can hit the ground running when they get home. If you’ve been wanting to get an organized start on preserving your photos, heirlooms, and family history, this is a great chance to learn the best techniques to make it easier.

The second session of GRIP, slated for July 17-22, will feature seven course offerings:
  • Advanced Genetic Genealogy
  • Diving Deeper into New England: Advanced Strategies for Success
  • From Confusion to Conclusion: How to Write Proof Arguments
  • Intermediate Genealogy: Tools for Digging Deeper
  • Practical Genetic Genealogy
  • Resources and Strategies for Researching Your Italian Ancestors
  • Advanced Research Methods

That makes 13 different courses to choose from. Each one features five days of instruction by leading genealogical educators and the chance to interact with others who share your passion. Plus, it’s just plain fun!

GRIP is held at LaRoche College in Pittsburgh. Students can opt to stay on campus in a dormitory just steps from the main classroom building, with meals included. The dorm rooms aren’t luxurious, but they have private bathrooms, a mini-fridge and microwave. Think of it as going to summer school for a week with a bunch of genealogy buddies. If you’d like some idea of what it’s like, take a look at some photos and recaps I posted in previous years:

Like I said, registration for the June session begins February 10 at noon EST. Sign-ups for the July session follow on March 2. You’ll find registration information here. Some courses tend to fill up quickly, so if you have a particular favorite in mind, you’ll want to get in as soon as possible. There's even a Countdown Page that takes you straight to registration. Enrollment usually remains open until a few weeks before classes start, with wait lists for full courses.

Here’s to warmer weather, and to hopefully seeing some of you at GRIP this summer!


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