Louise St. Denis, Managing Director of the National Institute for Genealogical Studies (NIGS), has announced the appointment of Sheena Tait as the new Director of the Institute’s Scottish Certificate Studies Programme.
Sheena Tait, born of Scottish parents, grew up in Scotland. Just after Sheena’s father died, someone sent the family an article about her paternal grandfather proposing to submit to a genealogical magazine. This triggered the realisation that Sheena knew very little about her father’s family. The genealogical journey started.
Shortly after, work took Sheena south to England where, surrounded by – and learning – the English record keeping systems, she had to learn how to research at a distance and understand the Scottish systems, as most of her ancestors are Scottish. While in England, she met and married her husband – another Scot – and also researches his family. This provides different challenges from her own, including English links and seafaring ancestors.
In her early career, Sheena ran computer systems for the military. However, her husband’s career as a serving military officer and the regular moves it involves made it impossible for her to continue her existing career.
About ten years ago, she decided to combine her love of family history and the analytical skills developed through her work to start a new career as a genealogist specializing in Scottish and Anglo-Scottish research. As well as carrying out private research, Sheena lectures on a variety of Scottish topics, and was a regular contributor to the British-based Practical Family History and Family Tree magazines.
Sheena is a member of both the Society of Genealogists in London and the Edinburgh-based Scottish Genealogy Society. Later this year, she will be one of the keynote speakers at the Third Australasian Scottish Genealogy Conference in Melbourne on 16 and 17 April 2011, organised by the Genealogical Society of Victoria.
“I’m delighted to take over as Director of the Institute’s Scottish Certificate Studies. I enjoy helping others discover for themselves the extent of their Scottish ancestry. There’s so much material that so many hobbyists don’t think of using. Hopefully, this will open up the doors to solving some of their brickwalls”, says Sheena.
Louise St. Denis says: “The Scottish Courses are an integral part of the Institute’s programs. We are so pleased to have Sheena onboard. As a Director living in England, she will bring a different perspective to the record courses for Scotland. We are really looking forward to the first of Sheena’s course. This will be an in-depth study of Scottish probate records, and will be available in early June. I’d like to thank James Thomson for the terrific course on ‘Special Aspects of Scottish Research’, which will remain part of the Scottish program. Past students highly recommend this course.”
Those of you who are at the Who Do You Think You Are? Live show in London from 25-27 February 2011 are invited to meet both Sheena and Louise at the NIGS on stand 93.
The National Institute also announced earlier this month that they will be offering a free course on Social Media in conjunction with their recent acquisition of GenealogyWise. If you are at the London show, you can register directly at The National Institute’s stand (number 93), and also receive a free T-Shirt!
The course – entitled, “Social Media for the Wise Genealogist” – covers social media tools vital to today’s genealogical research, including social networking sites, RSS, bookmarking, and more. This course, written by Brenda Wheeler and Gena Philibert Ortega, utilizes Drew Smith’s book, Social Networking for Genealogists. “Social Media for the Wise Genealogist” begins March 15th, 2011. To register, visit the National Institute’s website.