Hedtke makes HISTORY fun

By Kendra Clark
November 16, 2000

by Kendra Clark

staff writer

Gettysburg is the city where history is alive. As your bus comes to a stop you begin to feel the emotion of excitement.

You begin to picture everything that you will get to experience while you are visiting. The battlefields, a living history tour and a reenactment in one of the cemeteries are three of the pictures.

Welcome to the history club.

Unlike classes where teachers give lectures and students are expected to sit and take notes, the club allows the history enthusiast a chance to experience history.

“If you love history, you don’t have to be a history buff, it is a great experience and advantage to work with Hedtke,” said Anthony Contipodero, a junior referring to Dr. James Hedtke, chair of the history department.

The club, which was started in 1973, has an enrollment of about 15 students. According to Maria Aragona, president of the club, the members meet for bimonthly meetings in Hedtke’s office, who is also the moderator of the club.

The highlight of the year is the annual forum that the club hosts. The forum, which was started two years ago, has become the main focus of the club. Each year the club has the responsibility of choosing a topic and planning all the events for the day of the forum, which include booking speakers and putting a luncheon together.

When choosing a topic for the forum members try to choose a topic that is appealing to the club and also to the community, according to Aragona. “I think it’s a good way to explore parts of history that are interesting, but lesser known,” Aragona said.

Not only does the forum help educate the members of the club; it also helps in other areas of academics besides history.

“If you are interested in history at all it is exciting to get involved because you learn about organization and history,” senior Tricia Arnold said.

Despite all the time spent planning the forum, the club also finds time to get together for movie nights and also has been known to travel to historical sites.

According to Aragona, the club has watched movies, such as “Glory” and she remembers her trip to Gettysburg with the club from last year.

When asked of her response to the trip she remembers with a smile the living history tour that she went on and the reenactment in the cemetery at Gettysburg.

She also believes that you see a lot more than if you would have just went and looked by yourself.

Aragona would also like to add that she is planning a trip to Washington, D.C. for later on in the year, but is not sure if it will go through.

With all of the planning that goes on throughout the year in the club, members agree that Hedtke and his colleague Dr. Jolyon Girard are great incentives to being in the club.

“The experience with Hedtke and Girard is wonderful,” Contipodero said. He also adds, “They really put you in the situation and are up front.”

If anyone is interested in joining the club, Aragona asks that they talk to her or they get in contact with Dr. Hedtke.

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Kendra Clark

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