Cadet Megan Scheetz, '14
The VMI education is extraordinary, in part because much of it occurs outside classrooms and laboratories. One example: cadets learn about history and how people interact with history through the Shaara New Market Battlefield Scholar-in-Residence Program.
Funded by an endowment established in 1999 by best-selling historical novelist Jeff Shaara, the program brings a selected cadet to the Virginia Museum of the Civil War for a paid summer residency. Cadets also receive an autographed set of the Civil War Trilogy by authors Michael and Jeff Shaara. The Shaara Scholar rotates among the functions of the Museum, assisting the staff and becoming acquainted with all facets of museum operations. In addition, the Shaara Scholar will represent the Corps of Cadets to the visiting public.
The 2011 Shaara Scholar was Megan Scheetz ’14, a History major from Florida. “I applied for the internship because I have been to many museums, but I wanted to know what happened behind the scenes,” said Cadet Scheetz. “Learning how the museum works to interpret the history of the Civil War, the Battle of New Market, and VMI has given me a new appreciation for museums and the people who run them.”
“I have always been fascinated by history, and, at New Market, I am learning more about history every day, and not just about the Civil War,” she continued. Her time at the Museum also is reinforcing her decision about her plans after VMI, “I will head to graduate school, pursue a degree in archaeology, and become an archaeologist.”