About me

About me

Bilbao, Spain

I was born and raised in Fredericksburg, VA to a military family of five. My father is a retired Navy commander and my mother is a former emergency room nurse. I am the youngest of three children, having two older brothers who are 25 and 24. When I was eight years old, my parents got divorced after a long separation due to my mother’s addiction to alcohol. This greatly impacted my life because it meant that I was raised differently than many of the kids I went to school with. In our society, it is fairly uncommon to be raised in a single father household, but my father took on the role as selflessly and passionately as he could. However, it would be a lie to say we didn’t receive the help of additional family members during this time.

Honolulu, Hawaii

My paternal grandfather had a tremendous role in our lives growing up. My grandfather was a retired Navy veteran, as well as my father. Being raised in a household of two former Navy men and all boys, I believe resulted in my interest in “masculine” interests and hobbies. Needless to say, I was a tomboy. I was taught how to kill a snake, change a tire, replace the oil in a car, play all forms of sports, how to shave my face, and tie a necktie. I watched action movies and played video games, a lot of which piqued my curiosity about my father’s and grandfather’s military careers. Listening to their stories was always one of my favorite childhood memories.

While my childhood was certainly different, it was a great childhood, regardless. While I was a senior in high school, my grandfather passed away around the time of my eighteenth birthday. I was devastated that I had lost one of my best friends. After that, I disconnected myself from a lot of people and changed as a person, but not necessarily in a bad way. I believe I changed into the person I was meant to become. I began reading more, focusing fully on school work and healing myself. During one of the darkest times in my life, I found that learning about history helped me feel confident and secure again.

During my primary education, I found that I excelled in social studies courses. I was always a very curious child and wanted to understand why things were the way they were. Learning history just made sense to me. I soon found myself looking forward to going to school solely for my AP European history class where I absolutely fell in love with European/world history. At this time, I started reading books and watching TV shows based on medieval and renaissance Europe. Learning about prominent women, such as Catherine de Medici, Mary Queen of Scots, and Elizabeth I not only intrigued me, but also inspired me. My father and grandfather always taught me to be a strong and brave woman and to pursue whatever career I wanted. I knew at the age of 18 that I wanted to pursue a career in history, specifically in teaching at the high school level.

My first year of college I attended Coastal Carolina University where I was a Middle Level Education major. I realized I was not where I wanted to be and moved back home to attend the University of Mary Washington, where I could challenge myself being a history major while simultaneously working to receive my masters in Secondary Education. The summer of 2017, following my sophomore year of college, I studied abroad for a month in Bilbao, Spain. I had traveled out of the country once before to visit a friend in Denmark where I got to explore the country and its Scandinavian culture. Just like in Denmark, during the study abroad I got to study the Spanish language while learning a brief history of Spain and living in its culture. Living in Spain changed my life. I got to experience a culture that barely speaks English, that does not care that I am American, and that experience of being immersed in another culture changed my perception of the world.

Bilbao, Spain
Copenhagen, Denmark

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My dream is to become a high school history teacher. I hope to teach world history so that I can open the eyes of future generations to what the world of history has to offer. I hope I can provide an environment for students where they feel safe, encouraged, confident, and challenged to build their character, just as I had when I was their age. The destination of where I wish to teach is unknown. However, after my experiences in Denmark and Spain, my dream is to teach, at some point, abroad in Ireland where many of my ancestors lived.

                                                                            BUT WAIT! There’s more…

 

Some of my interests include:

My favorite movie is Remember the Titans

 

My Favorite Show is Game of Thrones

My favorite food is burgers, I have never had a brain freeze, and I have a fear of birds.

 

That’s just a little glimpse into who I am. I hope you enjoy my blog!

-Kelsey Phillips

 

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