Simpson students get Vietnam lecture from USM scholar

Simpson students get Vietnam lecture from USM scholar
Students from Simpson Academy listen to a lecture about the Vietnam War from USM professor of history Andrew Wiest. Photo credit WDAM.

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - Some high school students from Simpson County got a college-level lecture Wednesday on the impact of the Vietnam War.

Sophomores from Coach Amie Green's history class at Simpson Academy got an overview of the war and its importance in world history from University of Southern Mississippi history professor and author Andrew Wiest.

During the presentation at USM's College Hall, Wiest read portions of letters from soldiers who served and their family members.

"I speak about Vietnam to college groups and to community groups, but to have the chance to speak to young people who are perhaps hearing it for the first time, it's a great opportunity for me," said Wiest, who authored the book, "The Boys of '67: Charlie Company's War in Vietnam."

About three dozen students attended the lecture.

"I like how (Dr. Wiest) interviewed people and got reports of them and how (the war) affected them individually," said Caleb Garner, one of the students who attended.

"The Vietnam War was sad and it didn't end the way we wanted it to, but it's important for our generation to learn history because we don't want it to repeat itself," said Maci Scoggins, another student.

Wiest taught Green when he attended Southern Miss more than a decade ago.