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College of Arts & Sciences
Department of History

Katherin Schwichtenberg

History Spotlight

Katie Schwichtenberg


What made USC your college of choice?


When I began the college search process, I wanted a school with a beautiful campus, warm weather, great academics and a great football program. I am originally from the Chicago area, so USC was not a common choice for people that went to my high school. When my guidance counselor started to discuss college options with me, she mentioned that USC fit all of this criteria, plus had great scholarships available for out-of-state students. I decided to visit and fell in love with the campus and knew I wanted to be a gamecock.


Why did you choose to pursue History at USC?


I originally started out as a political science major at USC, but since I came in with AP credits, I had room to add a second major. I have always been passionate about history. Growing up, history was my favorite subject, and I have always gravitated towards movies and books with historical subjects. Once I realized I could add a second major, double majoring in political science and history was a no-brainer for me. I could pursue my passion for history while applying it to my political science classes. It is amazing how well the two majors complement one another.


-     What’s the most valuable thing you’ve learned as a History major? How has it changed your life?


As a History major, I have come to realize that history is incredibly relevant to debates and events of the present day. I hope to have a career in public service, and my experiences as a History major have allowed me to understand and learn from multiple perspectives from people across time around the world. Now, I am a firm believer that an understanding of the past is the best way to understand the present and the future.


-     How do you spend your time outside of the History Department?


      Outside of the classroom, I am involved with the College Democrats at USC and am a member of Pi Beta Phi and the Legislative Action Network. Last semester, I had the pleasure of being President of the College Democrats chapter, and we volunteered with various campaigns around the state. I also had the incredible opportunity of participating in the South Carolina Washington Semester Program, where I interned in the U.S. Senate and stayed through the summer to intern the U.S. House of Representatives.


-     What are your plans for the future?


So far I have no concrete plans after I graduate in May, but I am hoping to return to Washington D.C. Throughout my internships, I fell in love with policy work, and I would love to return to Capitol Hill or another public sector job involving policy. I also am considering moving back to my hometown of Chicago, so I am keeping my options open.


Favorite Book: Gone with the Wind

Favorite Quote:No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” –Eleanor Roosevelt

Hometown: Gurnee, IL

Organizations: College Democrats at USC, Pi Beta Phi, Legislative Action Network

Awards/Accomplishments: McKissick Scholarship, Capstone Scholars Fellow, pursuing Graduation with Leadership Distinction