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Senior Looks Forward to Career as a Historian, Educator

06/29/16

With the goal of being a positive influence on others and as his graduation grows closer, Jason Adams ’17 of Carmel, N.Y., eagerly anticipates embarking on a career as a high school history teacher.

“I love history, and I cannot wait to teach it,” Adams said.

“Knowing what is fact or myth is very important when it comes to understanding the past and our world as it is today,” he explained. “There are so many people who look at different conflicts and wonder why they happened, because they did not get the history education they needed.

“We live in a world that is so interconnected that it is important to understand the past histories of as many countries or groups of people as possible to better connect with them.”

In addition to his classes in history and education, Adams has had the opportunity to take a variety of other courses.

“My classes at MCLA have been fantastic,” he said. “The professors are great. They always do their best to assist their students and to make their classes as interesting and full of information as possible, during just one semester. I have taken plenty of classes I wished would last for a full academic year.” 

Over the past three years on campus, Adams has participated in a number of “high-impact” activities, most of which are tied in to his major and have enhanced his educational experience at MCLA.

Beginning in his freshman year, he spent time at the Center for Service and Citizenship, which allowed him to work with local children, members of the greater community, as well as future MCLA students at open house events.

For example, as part of the Student-Teacher In-Class Support (S.T.I.C.S.) tutoring program, Adams helped local elementary school students with their homework, then participated in a fun activity -- such as a sport or game -- with them.

Other activities included participation in intramural sports, as well as undergraduate research that was part of a "Radicalism in American History" course he took. Adams presented this work at MCLA's Annual Undergraduate Research Conference.

The presentation, he said, “was very beneficial as it pushed me to use my best research, writing, and presenting skills. It was also very rewarding as it showed me what my hard work could accomplish by the end of a semester.” 

Adams decided to attend MCLA because it was the best fit for him. “It wasn't a big school and it wasn’t too expensive. It also wasn't too far from home, but far enough for new experiences.” At MCLA, “I have learned great presentation skills, people skills, and research skills. All of that, combined with my knowledge of history and education, will allow me to really have a strong start as a high school teacher.”

After his May 2017 graduation, Adams plans to return to MCLA to earn his master’s degree while he works as an educator in the Northern Berkshire area.

He highly recommends MCLA’s history and education programs. “They are part of the reason why I have enjoyed my time at MCLA so much.”

“The education department is filled with some of the most intelligent and caring people I have ever met,” Adams said. “The history department includes some of my favorite professors on campus. They teach history in a way that makes it interesting and, at some points, very fun.”

At MCLA, according to Adams, “I will be better prepared as a historian and an educator than I could have been anywhere else.”