Class of 2023


Taylor Berkley is working towards an MA in History as well as a MA in Curriculum and Instruction, Social Sciences 6-12. She is from Kenbridge, Virginia, and completed her Bachelor’s Degree in History from Virginia Tech in May of 2021. Her research interests include the history of true crime and representation of people and place in history. Upon completion of this program, she intends to become a high school history teacher and one day work towards her Ed.D.
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Caroline Brunner is a second year MA History student here at Virginia Tech. She is from Madison, Indiana and completed her Bachelor’s Degree in International Studies and History at Hanover College in 2018. Caroline’s work focuses on histories of Colonialism and Imperialism, specifically with regards to religion, culture, and economy. Her current research explores contemporary missionary movements and discourses in Pan-African contexts during the 1960s and 1970s. Upon the complete of her Master’s, Caroline hopes to continue forward at VT in the Alliance for Social, Political, and Ethical Thought (ASPECT) Ph.D. program.


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Miranda Christy is working towards an M.A. in history as well as a public history certificate. She completed her Bachelor’s Degree in History and Classics at Ohio University in 2021. Her research interests include African American history, Civil War history, and public history. Her thesis will explore the political and social history of African Americans in Southeast Ohio in the nineteenth century.


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Amanda Dean is working towards an MA in history as well as a public history certificate. She is from Pulaski, Virginia, and completed her Bachelor’s Degree in History from Radford University in 2021. Her research interests include the legal fight of school desegregation and the Black experience in integrated schools. Her focus surrounds Southwest Virginia, with an emphasis on Pulaski, Virginia. Upon completion of this program, she intends to work in public history.
Sara Evers is doctoral student in Curriculum and Instruction for Social Science Education and a master’s student in History. Sara’s primary research interest is in history as “difficult knowledge”. History is complex, dynamic, and multifaceted; historical knowledge is difficult to engage with when it challenges one’s worldviews or elicits uncomfortable emotions. Her research centers on engagement with “difficult history” in informal and formal learning spaces including: classrooms, historic sites and museums, and simulation and gaming spaces. Prior to her time at Virginia Tech, Sara taught history in Virginia public schools and volunteered with the National Park Service at Manassas National Battlefield Park. https://saraevers.carrd.co/

Katie Gibson is working towards a MA in history and public history certificate. She is from West Point, Virginia. She earned a BA from William and Mary in History and American Studies. Her research interest are Southern history, public health, Progressive Era, public history, and race. Future plans include museum work.

Andrew Grant is working towards a Dual MA in History and in Curriculum and Instruction. He is from Christiansburg, Virginia and completed his Bachelor’s Degree in History (with minors in Russian Area Studies and War and Medicine) from Virginia Tech in May 2021. His research interests include World War I, STS, military history, and disability studies. Upon completion of this program he intends to pursue a career path and teach History to high schoolers in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

Joseph Hearl is working toward an MA in history. He is from Madison, Virginia and completed his Bachelor’s Degree in History at the University of Mary Washington in May of 2020. His research interests include nineteenth and twentieth-century U.S. history, specifically colonial and imperial histories, and intersections between race, health, and bodies.

Bethany Stewart is pursuing a MA in History and a Public History Certificate. She completed her undergrad at Virginia Tech and earned a Bachelor’s in History. She minored in Leadership and Social Change as well as War and Society. She is from Christiansburg, Virginia. She has a strong interest in public history, oral history, and the editorial process. Topically, she is interested in how gender, race, and class intersect to form historical identities. After graduation, she plans to continue her education and apply for a Ph.D. or an MLIS program.