Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History

Interview with Ernest J. "Ernie" Yanarella, March 1, 1992

Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries
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00:00:03 - Introduction and personal background

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Partial Transcript: And I'd like to ask you to restate your name.

Segment Synopsis: Yanarella begins by talking about his life growing up and begins to talk about getting his political science degree, how he switched from a math degree to political science, and his overall college life. He then briefly touches on his parents and what they did for a living when he was a child.

Keywords: Mathematics degrees; Political science; Professors; Syracuse University; Undergraduate studies; family life

Subjects: Childhood; College freshmen; College majors; Families.

00:05:15 - Childhood and parental influence

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Partial Transcript: How, how important was education in your family?

Segment Synopsis: Yanarella talks about his family and their influence on where he is today. He talks about his viewpoint on education and the importance of it and how much his family has affected that. He then talks about how much he loves education and learning.

Keywords: Childhood; Encouragement; Family; Interests; Introduction; Learning; Social class

Subjects: Education; Families.

00:12:13 - Importance of education

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Partial Transcript: Is there any one particular reason that led you to pursue a career in your professional area?

Segment Synopsis: Yanarella talks about how education is important for everyone. He then discusses how it is more important in different societies because it all depends on how everyone is raised and what they believe in.

Keywords: Careers; Generations; Influence; Workforce

Subjects: College majors; Education; Society.

00:16:46 - Career

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Partial Transcript: I think that was a question about what led you to pursue a career in your professional area, and there's also a question, um, what led you to pursue your academic career?

Segment Synopsis: Yanarella talks about how he ended up in his career path, how long he has been in school, and how he paid for school. He also discusses how he got help through different programs offered at Syracuse University that actually helped him become more successful in his career field. Yanarella discusses how he attended graduate school in North Carolina, which was the best decision he could’ve ever made because he got a major career boost there and got introduced to a lot of different jobs that he could’ve worked if he didn’t want to continue to be a professor at a college.

Keywords: Careers; Decisions; North Carolina; Politics; Professors

Subjects: College majors; College students.; College teachers.; College teaching.; Education; Educators; Universities and colleges--Faculty.

00:21:08 - Politics

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Partial Transcript: One last point that I would make about career choice...

Segment Synopsis: Yanarella speaks about a memory from attending the Democratic National Convention with a friend from college. He highlights the touchy subject of politics. Yanarella also briefly talks about how he got swept up in a police riot. Due to this event, he wrote and published a series in the college newspaper. He then concluded that he could not vote for a Democrat, and voted for Dick Gregory.

Keywords: Democratic Party; Graduate schools; Police; University of North Carolina; Vietnam War

Subjects: College applications; College graduates; College students--Attitudes.; College students--Political activity.; Politics and government; Student protesters; Vietnam War, 1961-1975

00:29:49 - Family

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Partial Transcript: We already talked about what line of work your parents are engaged in...

Segment Synopsis: Yanarella discusses his family life through his childhood and adult life. He speaks on his father’s influence on his career choice, as well as how his siblings are currently doing in their individual lives. He talks about how his father worked in carpentry while he grew up and it made him realize that he did not want that kind of career when he became an adult.

Keywords: Brothers; Carpentry; Family; Fathers; Mothers; Relationships; Siblings; Sisters

Subjects: Careers.; Childhood; Families.; Family history; Occupations.; Professions.

00:37:37 - Marriage

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Partial Transcript: My, my more immediate family, uh, my wife is a, uh, musician.

Segment Synopsis: Yanarella talks about his wife and the life they have had together, including how she has remodeled their current home. He talks about how she is a musician.

Keywords: Family; Housework; Musicians; Professors; Relationships; Remodeling; Wife

Subjects: Families.; Marriage

00:40:59 - Childhood influences on his career

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Partial Transcript: The next question is, what line of work, if applicable, are your children engaged in?

Segment Synopsis: Yanarella talks more about the influence his childhood and his parents had on his later on career choice and who he came to be as a person.

Keywords: Carpentry; Fathers; Grandfathers; Influences; Mothers; Neighborhoods; Parents; Support; family

Subjects: Careers.; Childhood; Families.; Family history; Housing development; Occupations.; Professions.; Working class.

00:44:42 - Grandfather's influence

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Partial Transcript: Um, I'd also--

Segment Synopsis: Yanarella discusses the influence his grandfather had on his family and on his life. He goes into detail about his living arrangements as a child and how heavily his grandfather influenced his community.

Keywords: Family; Grandfathers; Influences; Italian Americans; Small towns; family influence

Subjects: Careers.; Childhood; College choice; Families.; Family history; Housing.; Occupations.; Professions.; Working class.; Youth.

00:52:32 - Political science career

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Partial Transcript: At what point in your life did you decide to pursue your present career?

Segment Synopsis: This segment highlights the reasons that pushed Yanarella to pursue a career in political science. This ranges from role models to his interests that influenced his decision making.

Keywords: Courses; Current affairs; High schools; Interests; Political science majors; Role models; Schooling; Social and political issues

Subjects: Careers.; College majors; College students.; College teachers.; College teaching.; Education; Educators; Occupations.; Professions.; Teachers; Universities and colleges--Faculty.

00:55:45 - College extracurricular activities

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Partial Transcript: Were you involved in any extracurriculars in college that influenced your career choice?

Segment Synopsis: In the final segment of the interview, Yanarella discusses the activities he was involved in during his college years. He talks about his fraternity and other extracurriculars he was part of.

Keywords: Education; Extracurriculars; Fraternities; Involvement; Political science

Subjects: College environment; College students--Conduct of life.; College students--Political activity.; College students--Social conditions; Politics and government; Universities and colleges.