My name is Paige Wright. I am a junior history major and ancient Greek and Roman studies minor. I am from Surprise, Arizona. I have loved my time at Valpo, especially because of my experience in the history department. Being a history major at Valpo has helped me to fully decide what I would like to do with my life. I plan to become a museum curator and Valpo’s history department has done a great job of preparing me for the next step in fulfilling my dream.
My project for the internship/independent study course focuses on former Valparaiso University President O.P. Kretzmann’s speeches and sermons. O.P. Kretzmann is held in high esteem at the University and helped bring the University recognition on a national level. President Kretzmann was a pioneer during his time, he pushed the University to be better and to continue to be a beacon of hope in a time of great chaos. Kretzmann was president from 1940 to 1968, a time when the country was being plagued with a number of issues. From civil rights to political unrest Kretzmann was there to lead Valparaiso University out of the woods. I chose to focus on how Kretzmann handled the issues of civil rights, race, and segregation at the University. I chose to look at the legacy that was left by Kretzmann in regards to this specific issue on the University today.
I was able to find information to answer this question through the help of Archivist Rebecca Ostoyich and Professor Kevin Ostoyich and the Valparaiso University Archives and Special Collections as a whole. This internship has given me the chance to get a closer look at the work I will be doing as a museum curator later on. I was able to learn how to research and then inventory different documents. I truly feel that I am much more prepared and confident in moving on to the next step of becoming a museum curator because of this internship. It is a great chance as a historian to hone my skills in an environment that is only looking to help me succeed.