History at the University of Illinois

During my sophomore year of high school, I discovered my love for studying History (with a much needed nudge from my mom, as I was struggling with the realization that my goal of becoming a doctor was not going to happen because I reallyyyyy didn’t like math or science.) One of the aspects of studying History in college that excited me the most was the opportunity to study topics and histories that weren’t offered to me in high school, such as Black women’s history.

Being a History major at UIUC has given me the opportunity to take a lot of really fun and unique classes.

Favorite Class

There’s definitely a large misconception that studying History is just a bunch of memorizing names and dates, but the course Reacting to the Past couldn’t have been further from that. I took the course Reacting to the Past during my freshman year and it has been one of my all-time favorite courses during college hands down. For those who might not know, Reacting to the Past is essentially one huge role-playing game. Seriously, the class is an actual game. I loved being in a course that gave me the opportunity to learn about different historical events by actually immersing myself in the scenario itself by playing a historical figure throughout the duration of each game. It was definitely a class that was a lot of fun and never felt like I was learning (even though I was learning a ton!)

Fond Memories

One of the events that I missed most last semester was the end of the year awards ceremony that the History department holds at the end of the Spring semester. It’s an event where the department celebrates and honors the achievements of its students and gives out all kinds of awards and scholarships. This has always been such a fun and special event to me, and it’s always so much fun to see students, faculty members, and staff come together to celebrate everyone’s achievements. There’s also always great food too!

There Are Some Great People In History!

Of course, I cannot forget about the people in the History department who have helped to make my undergraduate experience memorable and enjoyable. I met one of my best friends during my freshman year in a History course and have gotten an endless amount of support from so many faculty and staff members. I couldn’t imagine my undergraduate experience without all of the amazing people in the History department and their kindness. If you have an interest in History, don’t be afraid to try a course or two out! Who knows, maybe you’ll make a best friend too!



Class of 2021
Hey y’all, I’m a History and Gender and Women Studies double major and a French minor from Chicago! I concentrate in all things Black and Black women studies and love long-distance running.

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