32 Iowa students win National History Day in Iowa contest


May 8th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Thirty-two Iowa students, including two from the Kirn Middle School in Council Bluffs, took top honors in a statewide history contest this week and will represent Iowa at the National History Day competition next month at the University of Maryland. Junior Division qualifiers Sam Hulett and Ben Price, under guidance of teacher Deb Masker, won for their project entitled “Star Wars.”

The 32 students competed against 375 other students in the junior division (grades 6-8) of the National History Day in Iowa contest this week at the State Historical Museum of Iowa in Des Moines. The students join 38 other Iowa students who competed last week in the NHD in Iowa senior division (grades 9-12) in advancing to the 2013 Kenneth E. Behring National History Day Contest held June 9-14, 2013, at the University of Maryland.

The group of 70 Iowa students will compete for scholarships and cash prizes against nearly 2,500 students from the United States, Guam, America Samoa, Department of Defense Schools in Europe, and Shanghai, China.

National History Day is an academic-enrichment program that helps students learn about historical issues, ideas, people and events. The year-long academic adventure fosters students’ enthusiasm for learning and encourages them to use primary, secondary, community and statewide resources on a subject of their choice related to an annual theme. The theme for 2013 is “Turning Points in History: People, Ideas, Events.

Nearly 10,000 Iowa students competed in the program this year, with winners at school and district competitions advancing to the state contests in Des Moines.