Hey there, my name is Owen Smith I am a senior, a history/ education major, and an intern at the Hudson River Valley Institute. I come from a small village on Long Island called Greenlawn. Not many people have heard of this place mainly because Greenlawn is surrounded by larger and better known towns. In addition to coming from a small town, I graduated from a very small high school from one of the smallest school districts on the island. I decided to come to Marist because I appreciated that small school feel, with small class sizes. The thought of being a student in a class of a hundred at the bigger universities always scared the daylights out of me. So, once I heard that Marist had small classes and an excellent history department, I knew it was the place for me.
From a young age, I always found myself in the outdoors. I was always hiking, camping, or fishing with my dad. Later on in life I became a Boy Scout and continued to spend my time in the outdoors even after I received the rank of Eagle Scout before my 18th birthday. I also began hunting with my dad when I became old enough. Some of the best memories I have are of my friends and I telling jokes in a log cabin in the middle of nowhere before the opening day of deer season. I played basketball all through my middle school and high school. I was pretty good at both offense and defense, but defense was something I was really good at because of my size and weight. Another thing about me is that I have always been fascinated with history. Something about how people lived and seeing how society has changed over the years is really interesting to study. I also am really fascinated with war. My mom told me stories about how in second grade I would ask the teacher when we will learn about World War 2 and she told me not until much later. Whether it be technology, tactics, or political policies passed during time of war, I think all of it is so interesting. One of the most exciting moments of my life was taking a nine-hour tour of the Normandy beaches in France during the anniversary of the D-Day invasion. Seeing all the beaches and old battlefields seen in war movies and television shows really put everything into perspective, and to be in the same place where such historical events happened was really powerful. History is something I have always loved and that is why I hope to teach history at my old high school.
My plans for the future is to become a history teacher either in a high school or a middle school somewhere on Long Island. I hope to get a master’s degree in school administration so that one day I will become a vice principle, principle, or maybe even a superintendent. Although I love history, I have always taken an interest in how schools function and I hope to one day take part in that process. I also feel that there are problems with schools and if I was to become someone high enough in the ranks, maybe I would make an effort to fix those problems.