As early as kindergarten, Patrick Sobkowski knew his love of history would follow him into college. A history major at Carthage, Patrick has felt right at home with professors and other students who share that same love. He explained, “We are like one big family.”
When he’s not in class discussing Issues of European History with Dr. Leazer or making progress on his senior thesis, Patrick can be found in the TARC practicing with the swim team or participating in Greek life. He belongs to Tau Sigma Chi and Phi Alpha Theta.
“I plan to attend law school and live and work wherever a job takes me.”
How have Carthage faculty had an impact on your life or Carthage career?
“I cannot thank the entire department enough, but Dr. John Leazer was the first history professor with whom I had a class my freshman year, Issues in European History I. From there, I took a class with him for the next four semesters. So I thank Dr. Leazer from the bottom of my heart for showing me what history at Carthage is all about. Secondly, I would like to thank Dr. Stephanie Mitchell. She has become more important to me than I can say in brief. She kept me sane throughout my senior thesis last spring, and I thank her for that. Also, I would like to thank Dr. Tom Noer. He provided invaluable first-hand accounts as well as sources for my senior thesis. I have become especially close with these three professors, and I thank each of them from the bottom of my heart.”
“My favorite class has been Historiography with Dr. Noer. It really taught me about what history really is, why we study it, and how to (successfully) study it.”
“I am a member of the swim team, Tau Sigma Chi, and Phi Alpha Theta.”
“Senior Seminar has been the toughest class. I took it as a junior, and the workload is tremendous, and yes, even overwhelming at first. But, if you do exactly as the professor says and stay on top of deadlines, I promise you will do well.”
Internships or on-campus employment
“I am working as an intern at the Kenosha History Center. The executive director of the Center, Chris Allen, is a Carthage alumnus. Even if you do not plan on entering a career within the history major such as a museum curator, the experience is wonderful. The people are so kind and always willing to answer questions.”
Opportunities at Carthage
“I served as one of the student fellows for the History Department during the 2016-17 school year. I also served as the secretary of Phi Alpha Theta, which is a national honors fraternity for history majors. I also have swum three years for Carthage.”
Favorite moments and memories at Carthage
“I was a member of the 2017 CCIW Champion Carthage swim team — our first championship since 2012. I could not be more proud of my team! When I finished my senior thesis presentation and Professor Noer came up to me and shook my hand and told me it was ‘wonderful,’ I knew then that I had become a bona fide historian.”
Favorite spot on campus
“My favorite spot on campus is the pool.”
Biggest surprise so far
“Just how brilliant our students are and how close the members of the History Department are to each other. We are like one big family!”
What would your 8-year-old self think of you now?
“Since I was little, I’ve loved history. In kindergarten I could name the U.S. presidents in order. I’ve known I would major in history and attend law school all my life, so I think that my 8-year-old self would be very proud.”
Why should other students consider your major? What advice do you have for them?
“Do not be discouraged when someone asks, ‘What are you going to do with a history major?’ Major in something you love.”