Deerfield Academy, Class of 2015

“I would love to see more history classes offered at high schools nationwide and more of them allowing students to write long papers over the course of the academic year.”

Callie Hoon Photo

1. When did you first become interested in history?

Enrolling at Deerfield Academy, a private high school in western Massachusetts, and taking my first history course there piqued my interest in history. This class was one of the many Deerfield offered, and was entitled The West in the Modern World. It surveyed European history from the Renaissance to current times. I had been a world traveler from young hence the course material—peppered with primary sources—was not only captivating but also engaging. Deerfield’s Socratic pedagogy centering on class discussions honed my verbal and literary skills. In addition, my teacher Mr. Michael Silipo was at once knowledgeable and passionate, and over the course of a year patiently nudged the budding historian out of me. Deerfield developed my interest in history.

2. Which period of history currently interests you the most? Why?

I particularly enjoy the post-World War II period, especially the Cold War between the U.S. and Soviet Union. Tracking the rapid technological and scientific progress of the late 20th Century fascinates me, from the first microchip to the spread of nuclear power, and how it interweaves with historical developments. My Concord Review paper on the link between the 1986 Chernobyl disaster—the product of a revolutionary nuclear generation—and the dissolution of the Soviet Union lies within the ambit of my interest.

3. What do you see yourself doing in the future?

I see myself taking many more history courses prior to my graduation from Deerfield, especially those focusing on the West. Over the rest of my high school career, I aim to write more research papers and continue reading books outside of class to nurture this passion. I would like to major in both history and art history in college. I would then pursue graduate school and eventually become an academic.

4. Is there anything else you would like us to know?

I would love to see more history classes offered at high schools nationwide and more of them allowing students to write long papers over the course of the academic year. I would like to thank The Concord Review and its founding editor Mr. Will Fitzhugh for giving high school students around the world—including myself—the only forum to have their history research papers published. The Concord Review enshrined my abilities in history, and I am incredibly honored to be a part of it.