History professor finds success both in and out of the classroom

Texas A&M University history professor Adam Seipp has had a busy year.

He published his second book in March, helped arrange a World War I conference in September, published an article in October and received a prestigious teaching award. 

His book, "Strangers in the Wild Place: Refugees, Americans, and a German Town," chronicles Europeans displaced by the devastating effects of World War II when over 30 million were left homeless. He focuses on the town of Wildflecken, which became the largest displaced persons camp in Europe. 

In order to understand and comprehend history, Seipp believes that you have to analyze "transformations at the local level."

"Historians take these large processes and write about them and talk about them in human terms, our subject is humanity," said Seipp.

The transformation of Europe inspired him to assemble a conference to mark the centennial of World War I entitled "1914 and the Making of the Twentieth Century."

During the September WWI conference he lead the panel, "People, Borders, and the Wartime World," discussing how the First World War shaped the European twentieth century.

The conference was held through the College of Liberal Arts Dean's Strategic Development Initiative and brought together 23 scholars from around the world, ranging from historians to medical professionals to music specialists, to discuss the effects of World War I.

His article, “The Driftwood of War: The US Army, Expellees, and West German Society, 1945 – 1952,” was recently published in the 32nd edition of the “War and Society Journal,” stemming from research he conducted while writing his book.

As a historian, Seipp is driven by the "German catastrophe" and how its politics have shaped the landscape of Europe.  

"One of the ironies of the 20th century is that Germany has [now] been able to achieve entirely peacefully what they failed to through two wars, which is to be the hegemonic power in central Europe" said Seipp.

On top of his research, Seipp also was recognized for his efforts in the classroom, receiving the Former Students Distinguished Achievement Award for Teaching for the 2012 academic year.

"I was nominated by my colleagues based on student evaluations, so receiving the award has been a real honor," said Seipp.

Seipp credits Texas A&M and the College of Liberal Arts for allowing him to find success in his work.

"I love to teach and I love to teach because Texas A&M gives me the freedom to teach the things that I'm passionate about, and I like to hope that I carry that passion into the classroom," he said.