Our esteemed History Club president, Justin Richards, is
graduating at the end of the Fall 2020 semester after leading the club since
his sophomore year. Justin is passing the torch to new leadership with the
announcement below. Thank you for your inspirational leadership and friendship. Congratulations, Justin!
Over the course of my 3 ½ years at the University of Delaware, I have tried to use the lessons of the past to help confront current issues in our society. As I graduate I firmly believe in the idea that is often attributed to Mark Twain which is, “history doesn’t repeat itself, but it often rhymes.” I have had great opportunities to gain experience in both state policy as an intern for Governor John Carney and in federal policy as an intern for Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester. I also had the chance to learn from so many great professors and staff not just inside the classroom, but outside as well at the History & Political Science Departments, Center for Historic Architecture & Design, Center for Political Communication and the Biden Institute. I am thankful for the advice of so many mentors that I have been able to learn from during my time at UD. These experiences have further instilled in me the belief that history and the present often converge. While public service can be seen by some with a sort of gloom and useless lens. I think it is one of the few areas left where history can be seen not just at the roots of a policy area or it’s limits, but also the inspiration for future possibilities that can be reached.
I have had the pleasure of serving as President of the History Club since my sophomore year. I feel like we have been successful in promoting the interest and appreciation of history throughout the university community. During my time, I have been able to lead the efforts in growing the club and expanding it through our great events like the Annual Constitution Panel and our partnerships on Career Panels. We also have had many terrific guest speakers over the past couple of years, who have been so gracious with their time. I feel like this Club can have so much more of an impact on campus as it continues to expand. Which is why the Club has developed outreach coordinator positions to connect more with the clubs, centers, institutes and departments across campus. They include an Arts and Political & Policy Outreach Coordinators, these two new positions will seek partnerships both on and off campus in ways that can expand the Club’s focus and reach. I have been grateful to work with such talented fellow students like Aaron Rubin, Sophie Zaidman and Evan Minnigh, I have full confidence in their leadership and that of the new executive board. I am sure the History Club will continue to be a success in the semesters and years ahead.
I think I can speak on behalf of all of us that we have been greatly indebted to the help of our faculty advisor Professor Dael Norwood. He has kept the momentum of the club and has been a critical link with the faculty of the History Department. Professor Norwood has often given us valuable advice, suggestions and confidence that the Club has the ability to do whatever we put our minds to. I am reminded of his phrase that, “history is present and present is history.” I think that will continue to be the club’s mindset, but also mine as I finish my time at UD. I will continue to be determined to use the skills, lessons and mindset that I developed as President in public service in the near future.