Studying the past to change the present.
Throughout the curriculum, the history department focuses on the core values represented in the Ribbons of Excellence. The goal of this education is to better prepare students for the world—to think critically, to care for humanity, to cross boundaries and more.
Focusing on the ribbon Crossing Boundaries and Disciplines, Austin Mac Wallace looking into the past to better understand the mindset of those in the present. Wallace focused on the national pride of the ancient Greeks and their national service requirements. Their history shows the Greeks as a well-oiled fighting machine that was desensitized to the brutalities of war. Wallace connected this with current military groups and their relationships with violence through war or mass media.
Timothy Vern Williams II turned to the other side of the world for his 2013 Ribbons of Excellence presentation. When the People’s Republic of China was established in 1949, the Chinese government sought authority across the broad spectrum of life—including the cultural taste in music. Williams focused on the governmental control of music, which had been absolute but as since weakened due to economic openness and advances in technology. Williams’ presentation spanned three fields of study: the use of techniques from the music, political science and history to create a dynamic analysis of the current state of music in China. His presentation focused on the ribbon Crossing Boundaries and Disciplines.
In her 2013 Ribbons of Excellence presentation, Amy Johnson took the opposite approach of Williams and focused close to home. She looked at the population and impact of Hispanics within Lenawee County. Through her presentation, she hoped ti raise awareness of the Hispanic population and the important role it plays within the community. Johnson’s presentation was under the ribbon Caring for Humanity and the World.