Caltech History Majors

        According to the most recent Caltech alumni directory (through 2004) there are 22 history majors spread out around the world. What does a Caltech history major do after he or she graduates?

Larry Shirley , Class of 1969

        After I graduated, I joined the Peace Corps and taught high school math in Sierra Leone (I had a double major at Caltech in Math and History). I returned to get a Masters in Comparative Educ at Illinois and then went to Nigeria, where I taught Mathematics Education (teacher preparation) for 15 years and also got my PhD in Math Educ. I also met my wife, who is a Ghanaian. We have two kids, one of whom is now a math-educator. Since 1989, I've been at Towson University, near Baltimore, teaching math education and especially, HISTORY(!) of Mathematics. I've published a little in the area of history of math and in the related area of ethnomathematics. Starting this year, I've been only halftime in the Math Dept and spend the rest of my time as Assoc Dean of the Grad College. (More information on homepage.)

Bill O'Meara , Class of 1975

        I am a construction Wireman with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers local #46 in Seattle. I worked in research for Weyerhaeuser 25 years ago as a technician in paper products testing, then as a scientist/computer programmer for the same company. I did scientific programming for various northwest companies while picking up bachelors degrees in Mathematics and Mathematics teaching here in Seattle. Then I was knocked on my proverbial butt by genetically linked epilepsy. Soon I was having one grand mal seizure a month and any occupation became impossible.

        After several years of trying various medical approaches my condition was stabilized by medication. But the computer field hadn't gone into pause mode when my career did. I did some soul searching and chose a new career by entering an apprenticeship program 12 years ago. I love the creativity and sense of permanence that comes with being a skilled craftsman.

Jeff Blair , Class of 1978 (entered with the Class of 1973)

        I've been teaching English in Japan since I graduated in 1978, with about 4 years off when I attended grad school at the University of Hawaii (in ESL=applied linguistics). (More information on homepage.)

Gary Cox , Class of 1978

        After picking up a PhD in Social Science from Caltech, Gary taught Political Science at various universities before settling into his present position at the University of California at San Diego. (More information on homepage.)

Cameron Campbell , Class of 1989

        I'm an assistant professor in sociology at UCLA. I actually double-majored in engineering and history at Caltech. The latter, of course, turned out to be more influential in my subsequent career path. (More information on homepage.)

Other Caltech history majors

The History Faculty

Then ...

Now ...

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Last updated January 2006
Copyright (C) 2002-2006 by Jeff Blair
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