Understanding the past will help you comprehend the present and prepare for the future.
“History majors understand the world and their place in it better than most people,” says Rick Dodgson, associate professor of history. “History students get a real chance to think about our world and the creation of their society in ways that perhaps other students don’t.”
Here at Lakeland, your history major or minor will strengthen your diploma and indicate strong versatility and knowledge. Often, students double major in history and education and become highly sought-after school history teachers. History majors are also natural, attractive candidates for law school, among other graduate school programs.
“History majors are usually quite literate,” says Dodgson. “They’re good at reading; they like reading. They’re good at writing. They’re good at summarizing information, summarizing arguments, seeing both points of view and being able to think critically … So, you end up with a well-rounded, thoughtful, capable individual that fits fine in the world of business, in the world of commerce, the world of entertainment – anywhere.”
Like almost all of Lakeland’s programs, the study of history here involves getting out of the classroom and immersing yourself in real-world learning.
“What makes it special is the relatively small class size which allows us to do things you just can’t do at a big university with a class full of 350 people … In our classes, if it’s an archeology class, we go out and do archeology. If we’re studying ethnic history, my class goes to the Sheboygan County Historical Research Center, which is full of millions of documents, and our students research the immigration history of local people.”
In addition, internships are strongly encouraged and set up at local museums and archives.
History Major Requirements (39 semester hours for education and non-education majors)
- HIS 101 World History I
- HIS 102 World History II
- HIS 190 Introduction to the Skills of Historical Practice
- HIS 111 United States History I
- HIS 112 United States History II
- HIS 461 Historiography and Historical Methods
- Two additional history (HIS) or history/political science (HISP) courses numbered at the 200 level or above
- Four additional history (HIS) or history/political science (HISP) courses numbered at the 300 level or above
- One of the courses listed below may be used in partial fulfillment of this requirement.
- ENG 380 The English Language
- MUS 311 Music History and Literature I
- MUS 312 Music History and Literature II
- PSY 463 History and Systems of Psychology
- REL 361 History of Christian Thought
- SPA 320 Spanish Civilization
- SPA 330 Spanish-American Civilization
- One additional history (HIS) course numbered at the 400 level (no substitutions)
Note: To qualify for Early Adolescence through Adolescence (grades 6-12) teaching certification in history, a student must complete the courses listed above, the Early Adolescence through Adolescence Professional Sequence, and the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction's (DPI) statutory requirements.
Listed below are just some of the careers Lakeland College history students from recent graduating classes have landed:
- Campaign specialist/strategist, Coulee Region United Educators
- Case manager, Community Tax Relief
- Advanced placement European history teacher, Unity School District
- Deck officer trainee, Great Lakes Maritime Academy
- History consultant, John Deere
- Bilingual family support specialist, Sheboygan County Head Start
- Graduate student (Ph.D.), University of Texas-Austin
Name: Dale Yurs
Hometown: Verona, Wis.
Title: Special education assistant; Alderman
Business: Verona School District; City of Verona
Dale arrived at Lakeland College brimming with enthusiasm for government, history and religion. He left overflowing with a newfound passion for digging deep to acquire knowledge.
“Lakeland gave me the love for academics,” says Dale, whose intense interest in the U.S. Constitution blossomed while here. “Before college, I enjoyed high school, but I never had that academic thrill I developed at Lakeland. What the professors gave me was a real thirst for knowledge, a desire to take things further. I wouldn’t have gone on to get a master’s degree or teach at the college level without my Lakeland experience.”
At Lakeland, Dale got a taste for teaching by assisting in professors’ classrooms and tutoring. He was also heavily invested in extracurricular activities, including organizing the “Get out to Vote” campaign in 2008. That project involved encouraging participation in the Presidential election and shuttling Lakeland students to their pre-determined voting location.
After graduating with his degree in history, with a religion minor, Dale spread his wings and soared. He earned a master’s in constitutional history from the University of Northern Iowa, taught history at Upper Iowa University and helped put together a World War I exhibit for the Wisconsin Veteran’s Museum in Madison.
In April, 2013, Dale defeated an incumbent and now proudly serves the Verona City Council as an alderman. His No. 1 priority, he says, is settling down and starting a family with his wife. But his love for politics continues to glow brightly.
“I’d love to be in the state legislature,” he says. “I’ve always wanted to be involved in politics. My dream is not to get rich, but to have a career that allows me to make a positive impact, to help people.”
He’s doing a lot of that now, both as alderman and as a special education assistant.
History at Lakeland
Lakeland’s History Club is “probably as vibrant as it’s ever been,” says Dodgson.
The club’s recent activities have included an open mic night at The Pub and a video game competition involving Assassins Creed 3 – which is based on the American Revolution.
Other regular activities include field trips (recent excursions have been to the Chicago Field Museum and the Milwaukee Public Museum) and the sponsorship of political debates in Sheboygan.