The University of Massachusetts Amherst
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Portrait of Michael Moreshead

Michael Moreshead '15

Michael Moreshead caught the history bug in high school. His Advanced Placement U.S. History Teacher Cheryl Spear introduced him to primary sources and to the value of analyzing the past.

At UMass, Michael thrived as a History student, relishing the opportunity to learn about a wide range of histories and societies. “History allows you to learn about a variety of places and people. You can gain specific knowledge about a particular culture while also developing a broader understanding of how that culture changed over time.” From Germany to China to the Caribbean, Michael studied histories near and far. In the process, he learned to recognize and reevaluate the paradigms of his own culture and historical moment.

Michael’s education moved further beyond borders when he studied abroad in Oviedo, Spain in 2014.

As part of the exchange program, Michael lived with a host family, and he studied at the University of Oviedo, where all of his courses were taught in Spanish. The experience allowed Michael to refine his language abilities while also learning more about the art and culture of Spain.

After his time abroad, Michael used his mastery of Spanish to complete an honors thesis on public health in Revolutionary Cuba. “Mr. Moreshead has produced a truly significant work exploring Cuba's health care system in the early days of the Revolution,” notes his advisor, Professor Julio Capó, Jr. “Using a vast array of sources, he uncovers a ‘revolutionary’ Cuban discourse that was at once tethered to a socialist ideology and, in recruiting workers throughout the island, often pragmatic.”

Michael used his education at UMass to shape his future career goals. In 2013, he interned with UMass Student Legal Services. There, he sat in on client meetings, practiced drafting legal documents, and met with district attorneys and local judges. His history education, language skills, and practical experience distinguished him as a candidate for law school. Michael is currently a first year J.D. student at the Northeastern University School of Law, where he is pursuing an interest in immigration law. “As a lawyer, Michael will no doubt continue to hone his incredibly strong critical thinking and analytical skills,” Professor Capó remarked. From a high school passion to a viable career path, history has helped pave Michael’s way to a bright future.