History: Social Studies Licensure Track

SECONDARY EDUCATION (9-12)

Candidates who plan to seek licensure in secondary education major in the specialty areas of Comprehensive Science, and Mathematics and minor in Secondary Education. The minor is comprised of a sequence of professional courses and field experiences that prepare candidates for the acquisition of knowledge and skills necessary to teach in secondary schools. The sequence of courses required in the Secondary Education minor also is required for licensure in the secondary education majors of English Education and History Major - Social Studies Licensure Track.

Candidates majoring in these specialty areas who plan to acquire licensure for teaching in secondary schools need to make contact early in their academic careers with School of Education faculty to ensure they are meeting all of the necessary licensure requirements.

Alumni Profile: Celsa DeJesús

celsa_dejesusClass of 2007.

I have become a Social Studies teacher at Henderson Independent High School in Salisbury and love it!  I completely don't see how you (Dr. Kruse) and Dr. Thompson do it! I have truly developed an appreciation for all of the classes that I took.  However, I digress.  Pfeiffer University was incredibly helpful to me.  I had the chance to learn a lot of things not only in the classes, but also through all of the extracurricular activities that I participated in.

Alumni Profile: David McGrew

McGrewSince leaving Pfeiffer I've had several jobs but the job I've held longest (well, almost the longest...) and the one I've enjoyed the most is the one I have now. Since 1993 I've been a licensed tour guide in Washington, DC. Most of my clients are 8th graders and I'm convinced there will be a special place in Heaven for those of us who deal with 14 year olds. In 2005 I was honored by my colleagues as the "Guide of the Year" and in 2008 I earned the designation of Certified Master Guide. Both are bestowed by the Guild of Professional Tour Guides of Washington DC, on whose Board of Directors I have served for 10 of the last 12 years. I am currently co-chair of the CMG program, which is akin to being Dean of Students.

 I have absolutely found my "spot." I am where I ought to be. I have incredible historical material to work with and people are actually anxious to learn about their Nation's Capital. I'm starting my 18th year and I wouldn't want to be anywhere else! I wish I could trace all this love of history back to Pfeiffer but it goes back further. I loved it from the beginning. There wasn't one day ever when I was a good student and Gene Earnhart could testify to that. But I know that Drs. Cotton and Earnhart kept the flame alive in me til I was ready -- at mid-life -- to carry the torch.

History - Degree Requirements/Courses Offered

Majors

HISTORY
36 Semester Hours Minimum
Required Courses (18 SH)
HSTY 221 U.S. History to 1865 HSTY 233 Civilizations of Europe I
HSTY 222 U.S. History since 1865 HSTY 236 Civilizations of Europe II
HSTY 231 Civilizations of Asia HSTY 501 Research in History
OR
HSTY 232 Civilizations of Africa and
the Middle East
OR
HSTY 235 Civilizations of Latin America

Additional Courses (18 SH) must be selected from the offerings in History at 300-level or above. At least one course from American history and at least one course from European history. At least two courses at the 400 level.

Optional Courses (up to 6 SH) may be selected from the related courses listed below:
ART 310 Art History Survey I (Pre-Hist 1500)
ART 410 Art History Survey II (1500-Present)
ECON 525 History of Economic Thought
ENGL 317 American Literature to 1865
ENGL 318 American Literature since 1865
ENGL 319 Topics Literature (with permission of advisor-depending on topic)
ENGL 325 British Literature I
ENGL 326 British Literature II
ENGL 330 Contemporary World Literature
ENGL 354 Myth and Literature of the Ancient World
ENGL 357 World Literature in Translation
MUSC 433 Music History I
MUSC 434 Music History II
PHIL 301 Founders of Ancient Philosophy
PLSC 305 Modern Warfare and Politics
PLSC 306 International Intelligence and Espionage
PLSC 401 Comparative Politics
PLSC 402 Modern Political Thought
PLSC 406 The American Presidency
RAPT 318 History of Christianity
NOTE: Foreign languages are highly recommended for those considering graduate study in History.
HISTORY MAJOR: SOCIAL STUDIES LICENSURE TRACK (101 SH (26 SH will satisfy General Education requirements))
Required in History (21 SH)
HSTY 221 U.S. History to 1865 HSTY 233 Civilizations of Europe I
HSTY 222 U.S. History since 1865 HSTY 236 Civilizations of Europe II
HSTY 231 Civilizations of Asia HSTY 411 Current Events
OR HSTY 501 Research in History
HSTY 232 Civilizations of Africa and
the Middle East
OR
HSTY 235 Civilizations of Latin America
9 semester hours must be selected from the offerings in History. At least one course from American history and at least one course from European history at 300 level  or above. At least two courses at the 400 level.
6 semester hours must be selected from the following:
ENGL 317 American Literature to 1865
ENGL 318 American Literature since 1865
ENGL 319 Topics in Literature (with permission of advisor-depending on topic)
ENGL 327 British Literature I
ENGL 328 British Literature II
ENGL 330 Contemporary World Literature
ENGL 354 Myth and Literature of the Ancient World
ENGL 357 World Literature in Translation
PHIL 301 Founders of Ancient Philosophy
Required Social Studies Classes (27 SH):
CHEM 201 Science, Technology and Modern Society I
CHEM 202 Science, Technology and Modern Society II
ECON 221 Principles of Macroeconomics
ECON 222 Principles of Microeconomics
GEOG 202 World Regions
PLSC 201 American Politics
PSYC 221 General Psychology
SOCY 301 Introduction to Sociology
Education Courses for Secondary (9-12) Programs (38 SH):
EDUC 205 Introduction to Teaching
EDUC 306B Learner & Learning I - Secondary
EDUC 321 Problems & Research in Education
EDUC 322 Diversity in Education
EDUC 360 Technological Applications for Educators
EDUC 406B Learner & Learning II - Secondary
EDUC 500 Secondary Methods, or EDUC 500B
EDUC 500L Secondary Methods Laboratory
EDUC 503 Senior Seminar & Field Experience
EDUC 540 Student Teaching-Secondary
Minor
HISTORY
27 Semester Hours Minimum
Same courses required for the Major with the exception of HSTY 501 Research in History I plus three additional history courses, 400 and above.

Courses Offered

HSTY 221 United States History to 1865 F 3 SH
Colonial foundations; national origins; constitutional development; territorial and economic expansion; cultural development; civil discord and war.
   
HSTY 222 United States History since 1865 S 3 SH
A continuation of HSTY 221 Reconstruction; industrial growth; the rise of progressivism; involvement in world affairs; changing social and economic patterns.
HSTY 231 Civilizations of Asia F 3 SH
The people, institutions, events, issues, and ideas which shaped Asia from the rise of civilization to the present. The course will focus on India, China and Japan.
HSTY 232 Civilizations of Africa and the Middle East S 3 SH
The people, institutions, events, issues, and ideas which shaped Africa and the Middle East from the rise of civilization to the present.
HSTY 233 Civilizations of Europe I F 3 SH
The people, institutions, events, issues, and ideas which shaped Europefrom the rise of civilization to 1789.
HSTY 235 Civilizations of Latin America F 3 SH
The people, institutions, events, issues, and ideas which shaped Latin America from the rise of civilization to the present
HSTY 236 Civilizations of Europe II S 3 SH
The people, institutions, events, issues, and ideas which shaped Europe from 1789 to the present.
HSTY 303 North Carolina History UD 3 SH
Social, political, and economic development from colonial times to the present. Prerequisite: Declared major or minor in History, Social Studies, or Education.
HSTY 311 Current Events: The Present in Perspective S 3 SH
Significant current events, issues, or movements such as the growth of Islamic fundamentalism, global terrorism, the Arab-Israeli conflict, economic crisis in the European Union, China's emergence as a world power, the Iranian nuclear program, and climate change are studied in their historical context. Events in the United States are covered, but the focus
of the course is international. A research/service project may be required.
HSTY 313 Ancient Greece and Rome F odd 3 SH
A political, social, cultural and economic survey of the Greek and Roman worlds.
HSTY 316 History of England since 1688 S odd 3 SH
Constitutional, political, social, cultural, and economic developments from the “Glorious Revolution” to the present.
HSTY 340 The Civil Rights Movement F odd 3 SH
An in-depth look at the modern Civil Rights Movement with a focus on the years 1954-1968. The course will consider not only the development of the major leaders and organizations that struggled against the Jim Crow system of the American South, but also the local people who supplied the "foot soldiers" of the movement. Attention will also be given to the precursors of the movement as well as the after effects that continue to the present.
HSTY 345 The American South S even 3 SH
A survey of the history of the southeastern United States from the pre-colonial period to the present. The course looks especially at two themes--the development of the South as a distinctive region in the United States and the level of influence (political, cultural, economic) the region has had on the country at large. Students will explore these issues through the interpretive lens of race, class, gender, and the environment.   
HSTY 390 Topics in History UD 3 SH
These one-semester reading, research and discussion courses will be offered at the discretion of the History program faculty or in response to popular demand by students.
HSTY 401 (WI) African-American History F even 3 SH
An examination of the African-American experience in the United States from 1619 to the present. Slave narratives, the writings of Booker T. Washington, W.E.B. DuBois, and other prominent African-Americans, and recent documentaries will bring to life the horrors of slavery and the struggle for equality. A research project is required.This is a writing intensive course. Prerequisites: HSTY 221 and 222 or permission of the instructor.
HSTY 405 (WI) Civil War and Reconstruction S odd 3 SH
The causes and consequences of the abortive “Southern War for Independence”; social, economic, and political developments in the disunited states during and after the war; problems of racial adjustment; constitutional and political change during Reconstruction. A research project is required. This is a writing intensive course. Prerequisites: HSTY 221 and 222 or permission of the instructor.
HSTY 408 (WI) Europe 1815-1914 F odd 3 SH
Interpretive survey of European history from the Congress of Vienna to the outbreak of WWI. Social, economic, and political transformation. Prerequisite: HSTY 236 or sophomore standing. A research project is required. This is a writing intensive course.
HSTY 409 (WI) Europe 1914-Present S even 3 SH
Interpretive survey of European History from World War I to the present. This is a writing intensive course. Prerequisite: HSTY 236 or sophomore standing (HSTY 222 recommended).
HSTY 419 (WI) The American Revolution and Early Republic S even 3 SH
A study of the causes of the American Revolution, the British North American colonies' War for Independence, the Confederation government, the drafting and implementation of the Constitution, the early presidencies of Washington, Adams, and Jefferson. While much of the course will explore the history of the "Great Men" of the early United States, attention will be given to the social history of this era--namely what has been termed the "unknown" history of the Revolution and Early Republic. The class will consider how the massive change wrought from 1763-1808 influenced the margins of American society. A research paper is required. This is a writing intensive course.
HSTY 423 (WI) The Vietnam Era S odd 3 SH
A close look at American society during the 1960's and early 1970's with special emphasis on the conduct and consequences of the Vietnam War. Historical readings will be augmented by novels and films. A research project is required. This is a writing intensive course. Prerequisite: HSTY 221 and 222 or permission of the instructor.
HSTY 427 Museum Internship UD 1-3 SH
Internship in conjunction with the Stanly County Historic Preservation Commission designed to give students practical experience in a museum setting. Interns will have the opportunity to learn techniques of research, collections management, and museum educa tion. Students should register for HSTY 427 for 1 semester hour of credit, HSTY 427A for 2 semester hours of credit, and 427B for 3 semester hours of credit. Prerequisite: HSTY 300 and permission of Department Chair in consultation with supervising faculty.
HSTY 428 Life in Medieval England F even 3 SH
An exploration of the ways people in all levels of Medieval English society lived and thought. Each student will be responsible for researching and discussing with the class the life of a particular kind of medieval person (i.e. noble, knight, lady, merchant, priest, nun, peasant, etc.) and for writing a fictionalized autobiography of his or her person. Prerequisite: HSTY 233 or permission of the instructor.
HSTY 430 (WI) Revolution in the Modern World F even 3 SH
A study in comparative history and in the concept of revolution. The course will deal with the French, Russian and Chinese revolutions as well as several more recent revolutions. A research project is required. This is a writing intensive course. Prerequisite: HSTY 221, 231, 232, or 233 or sophomore standing.
HSTY 490 (WI)
Topics in History UD 3 SH
These one-semester reading, research and discussion courses will be offered at the discretion of the History program faculty or in response to popular demand by students. They include such topical courses as: History of the American South, Immigration and Ethnicity, and Pre-Revolutionary America. Research projects are often required in these courses.
HSTY 501 (WI) Research in History F 3 SH
Students undertake an intensive course of study in a topic of special personal interest. Classroom exercises and discussions, oral presentations, peer evaluations, and extensive work with primary and secondary materials prepare students to write a prospectus for an article-length paper worthy of publication or presentation at an undergraduate conference. This is a writing intensive course. Prerequisite: Senior standing or permission from instructor.

 

 


History (HSTY)

The History curriculum provides a broad spectrum of courses covering all periods of history in all areas of the world. There are few specifically required courses in the History major and students have the opportunity to design majors (with the approval of the Department Chair) that best meet their own career goals or personal interests.

Graduates in History may continue their studies in graduate or law school or may choose to pursue careers in teaching, government, foreign service, journalism, archival work, or business.

Alumni Profile: Janet Bennett Deaton

j_deatonClass of 1996.

I obtained my master's degree in reading from UNCP and was a curriculum specialist for several years, but with the budget cuts, the position was not renewed. I am currently teaching History, Civics and World, at East Montgomery High School. I love history so I am enjoying being back in the classroom.

Welcome to the Department of History and Political Science

juanita kruse histThe Department of History and Political Science offers a broad spectrum of courses that meet General Education requirements and that guide interested students to degree completion in the following majors: History, Political Science, and Pre-Law. In addition, we offer a Social Studies Track that directs students through the proper sequence of courses required in the state of North Carolina to teach in a public, secondary school.

While the department's majors prepare students well for teacher certification, graduate school, or law school, the majority of the students currently in our programs are not necessarily looking toward those ends. We like to suggest that a major in our department can set a student up to do anything. Our courses stress and support critical and analytical thinking, writing, oral communication, and independent research. Classes reflect the depth and breadth of topics in History and Politics—from general surveys of the United States, Europe, and the World, to more detailed investigations of the social, political, economic, and military realities of our collective past. Major fields are designed so that students have the ability to pursue coursework that fits into their particular interests once they navigate the few required introductory courses.

Our current and former students have had great success presenting papers at regional conferences, taking advantage of local museum internships and the Capital Hill Internship Program in Washington, D.C., and participating in the many international travel opportunities sponsored on campus. These experiences have served them well in their post-graduate lives. Please take time to read some of their stories posted here.

 

Faculty: Michael Thompson

thompsonMichael D. Thompson, Professor of History
Chair, Department of History and Political Science

It has been an incredibly rewarding experience to teach at Pfeiffer since the Fall 2000 semester. My principle responsibilities include teaching the general education survey of United States History and the advanced and research courses in American History. Topics range from the American Revolution and Early Republic to the Civil War and Reconstruction to the Vietnam Era. The classes that I am especially proud of are the few that I have developed in tandem with professors in Pfeiffer's Language and Literature department—The Civil Rights Movement and The American South. Both topics reflect my past research and ongoing passion.

Away from Pfeiffer, I enjoy spending my time running, watching English Premier League soccer, traveling, and volunteering at the YMCA of Greater Charlotte. All of these I am able to do alongside my wife, Molly, and my daughters, Elly and Sarah. One of my most significant accomplishments that ties together work and service has been the development of an educational program for middle and high school students in Charlotte called “Creating a Usable Past: A Study of the Civil Rights Movement.” In Spring 2009, while on sabbatical, through a partnership with the Stratford Richardson YMCA, I created a travel and learn program for young people. You are welcome to take a look at some of the many locations where organizers and participants have made an effort to tell our story.

Creating a Usable Past
This blog traced the partnership between the Stratford-Richardson YMCA and Pfeiffer University historian, Michael Thompson, as they seek to engage young people in the study of the Civil Rights Movement and ways to use lessons from the past to transform their present and future lives.

 

History Curriculum

HISTORY

36 Semester Hours Minimum

Required Courses (18 SH)

HSTY 221 U.S. History to 1865 HSTY 233 Civilizations of Europe I

HSTY 222 U.S. History since 1865 HSTY 236 Civilizations of Europe II

HSTY 231 Civilizations of Asia HSTY 501 Research in History

or

HSTY 232 Civilizations of Africa and

the Middle East

or

HSTY 235 Civilizations of Latin America

Additional Courses (18 SH) must be selected from the offerings in History at 300-level

or above. At least one course from American history and at least one course from

European history. At least two courses at the 400 level.

History/109

Optional Courses (up to 6 SH) may be selected from the related courses listed below:

ECON 525 History of Economic Thought

ENGL 317 American Literature to 1865

ENGL 318 American Literature since 1865

ENGL 319 Topics Literature (with permission of advisor-depending on topic)

ENGL 325 British Literature I

ENGL 326 British Literature II

ENGL 330 Contemporary World Literature

ENGL 354 Myth and Literature of the Ancient World

ENGL 357 World Literature in Translation

PHIL 301 Founders of Ancient Philosophy

PHIL 302 Founders of Modern Philosophy

PLSC 305 Modern Warfare and Politics

PLSC 306 International Intelligence and Espionage

PLSC 401 Comparative Politics

PLSC 402 Modern Political Thought

PLSC 406 The American Presidency

NOTE: Foreign languages are highly recommended for those considering graduate study in History.

HISTORY MAJOR: SOCIAL STUDIES LICENSURE TRACK (101 SH (26 SH will satisfy General Education

requirements))

Required in History (21 SH)

HSTY 221 U.S. History to 1865 HSTY 233 Civilizations of Europe I

HSTY 222 U.S. History since 1865 HSTY 236 Civilizations of Europe II

HSTY 231 Civilizations of Asia HSTY 411 Current Events

or HSTY 501 Research in History

HSTY 232 Civilizations of Africa and

the Middle East

or

HSTY 235 Civilizations of Latin America

9 semester hours must be selected from the offerings in History. At least one course from American

history and at least one course from European history at 300 level or above. At least two courses at

the 400 level

6 semester hours must be selected from the following:

ENGL 317 American Literature to 1865

ENGL 318 American Literature since 1865

ENGL 319 Topics in Literature (with permission of advisor-depending on topic)

ENGL 327 British Literature I

ENGL 328 British Literature II

ENGL 330 Contemporary World Literature

ENGL 354 Myth and Literature of the Ancient World

ENGL 357 World Literature in Translation

PHIL 301 Founders of Ancient Philosophy

or

PHIL 302 Founders of Modern Philosophy

Required Social Studies Classes (27 SH):

CHEM 201 Science, Technology and Modern Society I

CHEM 202 Science, Technology and Modern Society II

ECON 221 Principles of Macroeconomics

ECON 222 Principles of Microeconomics

GEOG 202 World Regions

PLSC 201 American Politics

PSYC 221 General Psychology

SOCY 301 Introduction to Sociology

110/History

Education Courses for Secondary (9-12) Programs (38 SH):

EDUC 205 Introduction to Teaching

EDUC 306B Learner & Learning I - Secondary

EDUC 321 Problems & Research in Education

EDUC 322 Diversity in Education

EDUC 360 Technological Applications for Educators

EDUC 406B Learner & Learning II - Secondary

EDUC 500 Secondary Methods, or EDUC 500B

EDUC 500L Secondary Methods Laboratory

EDUC 503 Senior Seminar & Field Experience

EDUC 540 Student Teaching-Secondary

 

Faculty: Juanita Kruse


kruse

I earned my Ph.D. in History from Miami University in 1982 and have been teaching at Pfeiffer ever since. My primary field of study is nineteenth and twentieth century Europe, with particular emphasis on Britain. I'm also very interested in medieval England and have created a class called Life in Medieval England which allows students to explore the lives of Medieval English people through their own research. My current reading is largely focused on the ancient world as I am preparing to teach a new class on Ancient Greece and Rome. I have found much of my time increasingly absorbed over the years in reading world history and trying to find ways to make it interesting and understandable to freshmen. I teach Civilizations of Asia, Civilizations of Africa and the Middle East, Civilizations of Europe I and II, and most recently, Civilizations of Latin America.. My current obsession is with finding good pictures to illustrate these classes. History is so much more than names and dates. Pictures of art, architecture, artifacts and people help bring these civilizations to life.

During the school year, I don't find time for much but my work, but during the summer I pursue other interests as well. Chief among those are reading novels, travel, hiking, and taking pictures. The picture above is me from August to May. The one below is more characteristic from May to August, and with it, I included a "friend" my sister and I encountered last summer in Glacier National Park (a fabulous place to hike).

 

JK1

JK2

 

 

 

 

 

 

Faculty: Tom Hyde

Tom HydeProfessor Thomas Hyde worked in Washington, D.C. as a Congressional staff member in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1978 to 1984.  Dr. Hyde assisted one member on issues of American Foreign Policy and World Politics. For another member, Hyde assisted with oversight of the Federal Election Commission (campaign finance law) and the budgets of all of the Standing Committees of the U.S.  House of Representatives.  Dr. Hyde's goal is to translate his real world experience into the content of his Political Science and Pre-Law courses.  Hyde's hobby is film and he has developed a number of courses using movies to explore a variety of political issues such as espionage, world politics, American politics and law and justice.

Alumni Profile: Damion Miller

damion1I am honored and privileged to have completed my undergraduate degree in History at Pfeiffer University. I feel that I received a well-rounded and balanced scholastic experience studying History. I am now in my final semester as a graduate student at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in the Library and Information Science program. My experience as a work study student in Pfeiffer's library and a semester as an intern with Jonathan Hutchinson in the university archives and special collections opened an opportunity that didn't immediately occur to me. History will always be my first love, and originally I had considered pursuing a Masters degree in Ancient Studies or Museum Studies.

Yet after some consultation with Dr. Thompson during my senior year, he encouraged me to take the course of a MLIS degree due to its versatility. I can now say that his suggestion was the best advice in a long string of good advice that he ever gave me. I was able to receive a full scholarship largely based on the support of Dr. Kruse and Dr. Thompson. They were very supportive both in and out of the classroom. I can honestly say that they are both two of the most brilliant professors that I damion2have ever had during my academic career. They both hold their History majors to a high standard and give them all of the tools they need to be successful.

In addition, they were always available with an "open door" policy to answer any questions. In particular Dr. Thompson was a great mentor for me personally, and I consider him to now be a good friend. Without his guidance and mentorship I am sure that I would not be enjoying the success today as a scholar.

Alumni Profile: William and Susan Lee

Both of us retired in 2008; Susan from her teaching career teaching High School world history in Virginia Beach, VA  for 13 years and me from a 34 year career as a Financial Manager for Graybar Electric Company, Inc., last assignment being Norfolk, VA. We now live in our retirement home we built in Junaluska Highlands, near Lake Junaluska, in the mountains of western North Carolina.

During our careers we lived in Charlotte, NC, Montgomery, AL, back to Charlotte, NC, Richmond, VA, and finally in Chesapeake, VA., where we raised two sons (now grown and living in Charlotte, NC and Virginia Beach, VA, respectively).

I look back on my four years at Pfeiffer as a time many faculty and friends helped me grow up and become prepared to face the challenges of the world.  I had many professors, such as Dr. William Cotton, Eugene Earnhardt, and Norman Singetary, to name a few, that helped me make that transition into the next phase of my life.  Allowing me the opportunity to fail, but giving me the encouragement and the promise to pick myself up and try again with better results and graduating in four years is something I will always remember.  I believe the small campus and small class atmosphere, prevented me from getting lost at a larger institution.  Our oldest son in Charlotte, NC is now enrolled at Pfeiffer's Charlotte campus and is receiving the same personal attention I received in Misenheimer and is on track to graduate soon.

I trust this has given you a little insight as to what Pfeiffer did for me in my life.

Mac Lee (Class of 1970)

Alumni Profile: Rusty Ring

r_ring_2

During my summer breaks at Pfeiffer I took advantage of internship opportunities on Capitol Hill.  This led to an offer to work for Congressman Stan Parris (R-8-VA) just after graduating from Pfeiffer University in 1985.  I worked as a Legislative Assistant helping the Congressman on labor and educations issues.  After leaving the Hill, I had an short stint as an editor for a small publishing company.  I found that I missed working in politics so I decided to take an opportunity to represent a trade association in the insurance industry as a lobbyist.  This led to a position representing Mutual of Omaha Insurance in Washington and I eventually ended up running their federal affairs department.  After thirteen years with Mutual of Omaha I left to open the Washington office for AdvancePCS, a pharmacy benefits manager.  Ten years later, and three major mergers later, I am running the government affairs group for CVS Caremark the 18th largest company in the country.

My passion for history continued after graduation and I found that the skills and knowledge developed from my time at Pfeiffer have been invaluable in my career.


Alumni Profile: Michael Stowe

m_stoweI graduated with an A.B. in History in 1971.  The late '60s was an interesting time to be a student at Pfeiffer -- perhaps to be a student anywhere -- considering the social, political, and cultural changes that were everywhere so evident.  Being a small school, Pfeiffer offered a supportive program, but one that was also attuned to the changes we were experiencing.  Several departments, including sociology and history, did not shy away from having honest dialog, even including radical views.  I found the intellectual diversity and honesty quite stimulating, and upon graduation I decided to pursue a career in social work.  I also studied music at Pfeiffer.  My first job was as a social worker for Stanly County, and after about a year I decided to get an M.S.W. at UNC-Chapel Hill.  It was after several more social work jobs that I was hired to teach at Pfeiffer in criminal justice and social work in 1977.  In 1982 I took a job teaching in the Department of Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work at Slippery Rock University in western PA.  I had helped with Pfeiffer's social work accreditation and this experience helped me get the job of leading our accreditation efforts at SRU.  

I completed a Ph.D. at the University of Pittsburgh's School of Social Work and went on MS1to teach for 25 years in SRU's department, the last six as department chairperson.  I was honored to be named Professor Emeritus in 2008.  Since my retirement in 2007 I have been traveling, playing and writing music, and sleeping late.  My retirement present to myself in 2007 was for my wife and me to take the "Beatles pilgrimage" to Liverpool, London, and Hamburg, following the many Beatle sites and experiences.  This trip will probably not come as a surprise to any alumni who remember me at Pfeiffer because I have long been a Beatles fan.

Alumni Profile: John McNeil

j_mcneil

Class of 2004.

I am currently teaching at East Rowan High School in Salisbury NC  and coaching baseball. I am serving as the Social Studies department chair, and I am teaching Civics and Economics and honors Civics and Economics to 10th grade students. As for the extra curricular activities, like I said I am an Assistant Baseball Coach, and our team won the 2010 NC 3A State Championship.

Alumni Profile: Itamar Friedman

i_friedmanClass of 2009.

After finishing my degree in history at Pfeiffer University, I had the pleasure of volunteering in the Stanly County museum of history. I plan to continue my education with an M.A. and a PhD in history and dedicate myself to a career of lifelong learning and teaching.

Alumni Profile: George Thompson

g_thompsonClass of 1965.

I am a husband, father, grandfather, and clergy in the Western North Carolina Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church. My companion in life's pilgrimage is my high school sweetheart, the former Patricia Harrill of Bostic, North Carolina. She is a delightful self-giving companion who shares my vision for ministry.  We have always worked in concert and in mutually supportive ways and have been married for the past 45 years.  We are parents of Stephanie Thompson Vannoy, who lives in Greensboro with her husband, Aaron, and their six-year-old son, Max. Stephanie is the Business Manager/Supervisor of the Regional Cancer Center for Moses Cone Health Center.

For approximately thirty-five years, I served as a pastor in towns and cities in the western half of my native state.  My passion is parish ministry.  I consider the role of the pastor to be the most exciting and fulfilling function in the life of the church.  I have served small churches, including a three-point charge in Union County with one congregation of twenty members.  I have served churches adjacent to schools of higher education--Wingate and Boone UMC.   I was a rural church pastor at Shady Grove, now one of the premier congregations in the Lexington District.  I have served large, urban churches like Christ UMC of Greensboro and Providence UMC in the city of Charlotte.  Each of these has provided a context for developing close relationships among the members and opportunities for serving Christ in a myriad of creative expressions.

g_thompson_2aI have a strong passion for preaching and teaching. As an incurable amateur historian, I tend to illustrate from readings from this background. I continue to read well-researched biographies and find them relevant to the task of ministry. Among my greatest blessings is the gift of a liberal arts education.  In 1965 I graduated from Pfeiffer College with a history major after studying under the influence of several inspiring scholars devoted to excellence in teaching. Roger Kusche and George Melton had a particular impact upon my life. In these most recent years I have served with gratitude on that institution's Board of Trustees and was privileged to hold the office of chair for a brief period.
I completed my formal theological education at Duke Divinity School where I gained a compelling interest in biblical studies, systematic theology, church history, and Christian ethics.  There I received the tools for pursuing a life-long pursuit of a faith seeking understanding.  Among those who molded my mind in those years are memorable scholars and practitioners of the faith like Mickey Efird, Robert Cushman, Moody Smith, W.D. Davies, Stuart Henry, Harmon Smith, and visiting professor Jurgen Moltmann.

g_thompson_3Currently I am the District Superintendent for the United Methodist churches of Charlotte, serving my eighth and final year in that office. The art of preaching remains a passion for me, but now it is my responsibility to hear the pastors of this district for the purpose of support and accountability. I work with our Bishop and his Cabinet of fifteen superintendents in assigning pastors to their pastoral charges. Each Sunday I try to hear at least two of the preachers in our district of over fifty churches.   Preaching is not merely delivering a sermon; it is delivering a life.  As I grow closer to my fellow clergy, I come to worship in order to experience God and to affirm these parish servants and friends.  I also am a mentor and coach to those who wish to receive the critique of a loving colleague.  For over a decade I was a contributing editor for Pulpit Digest and continue to learn from those who practice excellence in the communication of the gospel.

Some of my passions in ministry have found expression through opportunities afforded by the connectional church.  I was a member of the WNC Conference Board of Ordained Ministry (1984 - 1992) and served as its Vice Chair.  I was Chair of the WNC Conference Peace Committee (1980-84) and gave expression to my life-long focus upon matters related to the Middle East, lecturing in churches throughout the conference on various facets of this subject.  I directed the Third World Exchange Ministries (1976-1980) with focus upon exchanges in India and Kenya.  I have traveled, through the auspices of the church and mission teams to Mexico, Haiti, and Bolivia.  I have participated in spiritual life pilgrimages to the lands of the Bible including Israel, Jordan, Egypt, Greece and Turkey.  I have been to Germany for dialogue with theologians and pastors. I attended the World Methodist Conference in Singapore in 1991.

In each local church I have become intensely involved in programs of compassion and ministries with the poor.  Tuesday was my day as a volunteer at the Greensboro Urban Ministry.  In Waynesville I was chair of the community organization that ministered to victims of sexual assault and domestic violence.  I have been an active Rotarian since 1987 and before that a member of Lion's and Kiwanis.
I confess to being a recovering workaholic.  In 2008 my life was spared by the exam of a wonderful general practitioner whose perceptive analysis led to my receiving quintuple heart bypass surgery. I attend cardiac rehabilitation exercise classes three morning per week and have been restored to a remarkable quality of health.

My hobbies are woven into my professional activities.  I am an amateur photographer and sports enthusiast, a fan of Duke basketball, Pfeiffer soccer, the Carolina Panthers and the Charlotte Bobcats.  In my spare time I read theology and biblical commentaries.  I dive into well written biographies and consider autobiography the purest form of fiction. I try to keep abreast of the most compelling political issues and never allow ignorance to stand in the way of my having a strong opinion.

I look forward to retirement in June of 2011 in order to experience the luxury of creative writing, historical research, and living with spontaneity in the context of a fabulous marital companion.

Grace and peace,
George Thompson

Alumni Profile: Howard McDonald

h_mcdonaldHoward McDonald
HCCG, Inc
Health Care Consulting Group
Mooresville, NC
704 660-0054 x203 Office
704 421-4905 Mobile

Class of 2005.

Advise public and not-for-profit hospitals and healthcare organizations across the country on marketing and advertising strategies.  An example of current and past clients include Carolinas Healthcare System, University of Mississippi Healthcare and Trinity Health. 

As an account strategist, I am responsible for working with our clients' marketing and PR department and various stakeholders in devising effective strategies to ensure brand awareness and deliverable services while maintaining a positive ROI and messaging. 

Obtaining my history degree at Pfeiffer University allowed me to develop the skills necessary to research, analyze and deliver sound and thorough plans to our clients at all levels in their organization.  The ability to think about and view a multi-faceted obstacle from different angles is key to understanding history and has served me well in my professional life.  The ability to think, not just regurgitate facts and dates, is what has given my firm's leadership the confidence in me to work directly and independently with our clients.

Alumni Profile: Danny Hunt

d_huntClass of 1991.

I am currently employed at South Davidson High School as a social studies teacher and coach. I have nineteen and half years of experience under my belt. For what is it worth, I have been the chair of the social studies department for five years. Hopefully, I can make it the remainder of the way to retirement. My coaching career is winding down, and I am mulling over whether or not to pursue a master's degree. I recognize the need to prepare for a career after teaching. But, keeping up with twin teenage daughters is a daunting task. Especially, one who plays travel softball from April to November. By the way, I have coached travel softball the past four years. Over the past summer, I had the pleasure of coaching a 14-U team that captured an AAU national championship bracket. I have even given thought about moving to the college softball ranks after retirement.  

The one concept that I took from the History and Political Science department is the need to bring the student into the lesson with lively discussion. History is stale without thought provoking questions and the discussion that follows. All of my assignments are geared toward the model we followed in your department. Read the material first and then prepare for questions and discussion. We were practicing literacy strategies before the term came into vogue. Needless to say, my lessons are much more focused and structured because of my clientele. But, the model remains the same.

I included my great aunt, Euna Kennedy, in my photo. She is 94 years old and a great source for one of my hobbies, family history. It is amazing how family history is shaped and molded by our nation's history. One of my projects is interviewing each of my father's brothers and sisters and recording their recollections for future generations. Maybe a book in the making? We will see.