National History Day Competition: Some Are Off to Nationals

Eight Dimond freshmen won National History Day honors at the State level and will represent Alaska at the National History Day competition in June in Washington, D. C. Students eligible to compete at the national level include Collin Dieckgraff, Rebecca Hoshaw, Kalie Suellentrop, Jessica Fontaine, Sydney Laudon, Keenan Price, Dawson Glover and Alaina Hawley. Every year, freshmen at Dimond High School are put to work at a project that tests their abilities as students. National History Day, commonly referred to as NHD, is a massive project that is mandatory for freshmen. The project can be presented in many formats such as websites, exhibits, documentaries, essays and even acting a performance. The project is, for most history classes, a huge portion of the grade, which means it requires a lot of work and attention. For many freshmen, the projects can be very stressful and not entertaining in the least. But for some, NHD can actually be quite enjoyable. “The project itself wasn’t actually all that bad,” said freshman Chris Slaten. His NHD partner, freshman Victor Charoonsophonsak, agreed. “The end of National History Day was fun. We got to see our own projects after they were completed and look at all of the work everyone else did, too,” he said. The students that placed at the school competition include: • Alaina Hawley • Janelle Feller • Chelsea Garritson • Johanna Jeffryes • Colin Dieckgraff • Ellie Asay • Kalie Sullentrop • Veronica Janezich • Jessica Fontaine • Keenan Price • Jennifer Holganza • Jackson Ursin • Cory Chan • Isabel Mills • Marion Woods • Rachel Land • Alex Ripley • Matt Falconer • Dawson Glover • Chris Slaten • Victor Charoonsophonak • Sydney Laudon “I’m really looking forward to going to D.C. It should be really fun and I think we have a good chance of winning,” said Keenan Price. “I’m so happy the journey of NHD isn’t over and I look forward to placing at nationals,” said Rebecca Hoshaw. National History Day started out when the ninth- grade history teachers at Dimond were looking for a project that could do together in the Freshman House. Someone brought up National History Day and the teachers were hooked, said Mischell Anderson, Honors History 9 and AP Psychology teacher. Although NHD takes a lot of time out of the curriculum, Anderson thinks that NHD is great. “National History Day is the best thing we do in History. It allows the students to develop the skills to do their own research, ” she said. This year’s theme was Innovation in History. “The theme this year wasn’t as good as other years. But it definitely isn’t the worst. One year, the theme was the Individual in History and it seemed like every student was writing a biography. “My personal favorite [theme] would have to be Conflict and Compromise,” Anderson said. “If I were to do a project for National History Day, I would want to something in Women’s rights. Probably Alice Paul’s civil disobedience that helped earn U.S. women the right to vote.”