Pete Wilson ’51 Fellows for Normandy Academy Announced

Each year, two MICDS students are selected to receive full scholarships (including flights, tuition, and meals) to participate in National World War II Museum’s Normandy Academy, a 12-day immersive summer learning experience in New Orleans, Louisiana, and Normandy, France, that challenges students to learn from the choices made before and during the historic D-Day landings. Thanks to the generosity of Mr. Edward “Tee” Turner Baur ’64, MICDS is able to offer the Pete Wilson ’51 Fellows for Normandy Academy scholarship. Interested 10th and 11th graders submitted applications, essays, and faculty recommendations this fall.

We are pleased to announce that Sebastian Joseph ’24 and Abby Wyckoff ’24 are this year’s Pete Wilson ’51 Fellows for Normandy Academy. “We had a remarkable group of students apply this year, all of whom have amazing strengths and assets. In the end, we are thrilled that Sebastian and Abby will be representing MICDS as 2022’s Pete Wilson ’51 Fellows for Normandy Academy,” said Carla Federman, JK-12 History and Social Sciences Department Chair. “They are both passionate about studying World War II and the Normandy invasion in particular, and thoughtful in how they approach these topics. They impressed us with their essays, their applications, and their interviews, and we’re tremendously excited for them to be able to experience this opportunity, and then bring their experiences back to MICDS next year.”

Wyckoff has long enjoyed learning about World War II and the time period of her great-grandparents. She said, “This trip offers the opportunity to literally go to the actual cities and battlefields rather than viewing them from a textbook. With Normandy, we get to go further and explore and see about many of the behind-the-scenes things, such as little-known plans, secret bases and communities, etc. I know that so many people have connections and relations to the War that it truly has such a global impact, even today. I hope to learn more for sure, but I also hope to be able to grasp just how D-Day and the rest of the War changed the lives of everyone, from my great-grandpa to the soldiers who passed away on the beaches. I’m really honored to be chosen and I can’t wait for this summer to come.”

Joseph has also held a great interest in World War II, and a long-standing family commitment to the military, with both his father and grandfather having served. Joseph is interested in a future in military aviation himself and has not only done extensive research on the topic but also built his own computerized flight simulator. For him, the trip will provide an opportunity to see D-Day through a new lens: “I want to connect further with the topic by gaining firsthand knowledge,” he said. He’s especially looking forward to the trip to Normandy as he “hope[s] to understand and sympathize with the soldiers who were present on the 6th of June, 1944.”

Joseph and Wyckoff will be joining three other MICDS students, past winners of the Fellowship, this summer. The last two years’ trips were canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, so Cate Cody ’22, Jackson Strelo ’22, and Aanya Tiwari ’23 will also participate this summer.

Congratulations, Normandy Academy Fellows!