Interview with Béatrice Colastin Skokan, University of Miami Special Collections Manuscripts Librarian
From - UM Libraries
Béatrice Colastin Skokan is Manuscripts Librarian at the University of Miami Special Collections, where she worked with Patricia Figueroa Sowers on the StoryCorps-Warmamas Community Archive. Born in New York in 1970, Béatrice's parents are originally from Haiti and moved the family to Haiti at age 7. The transition was initially traumatizing, but she gradually made the adjustment and was ultimately enriched by the experience. Her father, who managed nonprofit organizations, moved the family to Miami when Béatrice was 18, recognizing the changing Haitian political landscape and better educational opportunities. Béatrice found Miami’s cultural changes more challenging than educational changes and went on to receive a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from St. Thomas University, then later a M.A. in International Studies and M.A. in French Literature from the University of Miami. Years later, she secured a position in the Special Collections Department and went on to receive a Master’s Degree in Library Science. Her attraction to oral histories began with her Haitian background. Béatrice started a project of Haitian Diaspora Oral Histories and in addition to working with the StoryCorps Warmamas Community Archive. In working with this project, she hopes that others learn about the various experiences of those that go to war.