Tyndale history student becomes National Youth Ambassador

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Desaree Rosskopf [BA History 2016] was named one of 50 Youth Ambassadors at this year’s National Youth Ambassador Caucus hosted by Global Vision. The event, which brings together the top young leaders in Canada, was held on June 5 to 8, 2015 in Ottawa.

“It went well,” says Desaree. She and the other ambassadors networked and heard from Members of Parliament as well as leaders in business, education, government and community from across Canada. They celebrated the 50th Anniversary of the National Flag of Canada and had the chance to showcase their ideas for local community events celebrating the nation’s 150th anniversary in 2017.

Desaree’s idea—the restoration of Camp 30 in Bowmanville, Ontario—came out of her love for Canadian military history. Camp 30 is a prisoner of war camp from the Second World War that has fallen into disrepair and vandalism. Desaree hopes that the site will be restored and preserved as a national historical site. “For me, [Canadian military history] is interesting because we have a rich military history and grand accomplishments but no one wants to talk about them,” explains Desaree. “I wanted to preserve and explore that.”

For her honours thesis, Desaree is focusing on a hypothesis called the Canadian Military ‘Myth.’ This states that the Canadian military has been historically better in military situations than their British and American counterparts, because of their balance of adaptability and regulation. She explains: “When we fought in wars—the War of 1812, the Boer War, World War I and World War II—Canadians were vital in terms of a military force. Britain called us their ‘shock troops,’ which the Germans adopted because we just wouldn’t quit.” Though it is impossible to prove 100 per cent whether the myth is true or not, Desaree is in favour of the idea that Canadians were very strong players in these conflicts.

After she graduates from Tyndale, Desaree plans to earn a master’s degree and PhD so she can become a professor of history. In a Canadian history course, she read Who Killed Canadian History? by J.L. Granatstein and discovered her own passion for Canadian history and professorship. “History in and of itself doesn’t get enough recognition,” she says. “For me, it was a way to preserve it. I want to satisfy my own curiosity. It’s a job where you can explore whatever you want and pass it on.”


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