“Tell me and I’ll forget. Teach me and I’ll remember. Involve me and I’ll learn.” -Benjamin Franklin
Hello, everyone! My name is Megan, and I am a student at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville, where I study Social Science Secondary Education, with an emphasis in history. My hometown is Shullsburg, Wisconsin, but I graduated from Benton High School in Benton, Wisconsin in 2013.
I have many interests, and many more goals, but let’s tackle some of my interests first. Perhaps not surprisingly, my main interest is history–studying it, more specifically. My favorite topic in history to study is the American Civil War. I also enjoy traveling and photography (for example, the header image above was taken by me!).
As far as goals go, I believe one should never stop trying to achieve their goals. My main goal is to graduate from the University of Wisconsin-Platteville with an outstanding academic standing. From there, I look forward to starting my career as a high school social studies/history teacher. My goals tend to fall in line with my interests–doing well in my academics, landing a teaching career successfully, and traveling more. Sometimes reading about historical places or seeing images is simply not enough for me. I planned and completed my first history-based trip in the summer of 2015, in which I traveled in both Antietam National Battlefield and Gettysburg National Military Park–both which started as goals and ended in reality. From that trip, I learned I can achieve anything if I simply just do it.
I have always loved history, and I have always wanted to be a teacher, but I did not always want to be a history teacher. I did not realize how important history is as a subject until I started thinking about my future career. In terms of teaching history, I do not think every student has to become super enthralled in history. My goal as a future teacher is not to get all of my students to love history (though that would be nice), for I think that may be a little unreasonable. As a future educator, I understand it will be my job to not only teach my students history, but also to open their minds. Mainly, I want to help my students get past the idea that history is just facts. When I was a child, my mother always told me I was too analytical. It was not until much later that I realized being able to analyze deeply is very important in history, and I could not have realized that without my high school social studies teacher. I want to inspire my future students just as my teacher inspired me.
I believe history impacts everyone. It affects our past, present, and even our futures. For example, even simple things, like Kaiser Wilhelm establishing Day Light Savings during World War I for efficiency reasons, impact us today. Now, that fact may not be a compelling one to know, but it demonstrates that even little actions from the past can influence people in the future. History is happening now, happened yesterday, and will happen tomorrow. History will never become obsolete. Further, making connections is what history is all about. Everyone has a link to the past, and it can be rather exciting to find that personal link. History does not bind us to the past, but opens our eyes to the future.