April 25, 2019, Leslie Trichka Beery, VIS Chair and Webmaster, Women’s Issues Chair, Fort Morgan Chapter, NSDAR
I started the DAR Genealogy Education Program in January of this year and recently finished the third course. I found all three courses to be extremely helpful not only in validating my own processes but also giving me new tools and ideas for researching my own family and helping future members when they want to prove lineage to join NSDAR. Especially helpful was within the second course learning about identifying acceptable service for a patriot, working through the ancestor database and what to do in sensitive situations. Throughout all three courses it was evident that the knowledge would assist me and would help to assist my chapter in the future.
Anyone who is contemplating taking the GEP classes should seriously consider it. Although they are a little pricey at over $100 each course, you are given 90 days to complete the course and several chances at the exam that you are required to take at the end of each course. Each DAR member that successfully completes the entire program is then eligible to become a Volunteer Genealogist for their chapter. You are also entered into a database at the National level as someone that has completed the program and is trained to assist.
We have so many resources available to us within DAR but also need to learn how to properly utilize those outside of the organization. One common theme throughout the courses is validity and acceptable forms of proof. The internet is flooded with so many family trees that are not attached to any cited sources or are built on family records only. These are not acceptable for proving a lineage to a patriot which is necessary to join DAR. Being able to identify types of information and learn from other people who have ran into the same types of obstacles is important for DAR chapters to be successful. Assisting prospective members and being able to find proof helps not only the prospective member but also the chapter and the National goals for membership.