NEW ORLEANS (February 22, 2013) — The National WWII Museum is excited to open its doors to welcome the state’s top notch history students April 20 for competition in the Louisiana History Day Contest. The prestigious academic research program and competition is for students in grades 6-12 and is part of a nation-wide hunt for the best budding historians. The Museum is the state sponsor for the competition, which is made possible by support from CenturyLink.
Students are placed in two divisions — Middle School and High School — and tasked with creating a paper, exhibit, documentary, web site or performance that explores an important historical episode or topic. The exhibits will be judged and the best will be entered in the National History Day competition to be held this June at the University of Maryland in College Park, Maryland.
"It’s an America’s-Got-Talent competition for our young historians," says Museum History Day Coordinator Nathan Huegen. "And we are definitely building on last year’s growth of the program statewide. The Museum’s sponsorship should enable Louisiana’s students to build on their strong showing at last year’s National Contest."
Regional contests will be held on the following dates:
- February 23, 2013 — A competition will be held in Lafayette at the Lafayette Science Museum
- March 2, 2013 — A competition will be held for students from Baton Rouge at the West Baton Rouge Museum
- March 16, 2013 — Students from Shreveport will attend a competition at the Louisiana State Exhibit Museum
- March 23, 2013 — A competition will be held for students from Monroe at the Chennault Aviation & Military Museum and New Orleans at The National WWII Museum.
The theme for Louisiana History Day 2013 is "Turning Points in History: People, Events, Ideas." Students are asked to focus their projects on local, national or international topics. Turning points include major political changes, but students can explore social, economic or cultural changes as well.
The top five projects per category from each regional competition will be entered in the state competition at The National WWII Museum, where a team of three judges will interview students and pick the winners. The projects will be on public display and an award ceremony will honor the top entries. The top two projects in each category from Louisiana will then advance to the national contest to be held June 9 – 13, 2013.
Thanks to a generous grant from the Selley Foundation, travel stipends are available for students from the Monroe and Shreveport regions to travel to New Orleans in April for the state’s History Day Contest. In addition, all students advancing to the National Contest from Louisiana earn stipends of up to $500 for travel to College Park, Maryland.
"We deeply appreciate the support from the Selley Foundation and CenturyLink, as well as the National History Day organization, in encouraging young scholars," said Dr. Gordon H. "Nick" Mueller, President and CEO of The National WWII Museum. "This competition inspires and can actually change the life direction for many bright, inquisitive students — the next generation of American historians."
Louisiana has enjoyed a good track record at previous National History Day competitions. In 2012, 49 Louisiana students advanced to the National History Day contest from the following schools: Lusher Charter School (New Orleans); Math, Science and Arts Academy-West (Plaquemine); Ben Franklin High School (New Orleans); Caddo Magnet High School (Shreveport); NP Trist Middle School (Meraux); Pearl River High School (Pearl River); Belle Chasse Middle School (Belle Chasse); Pointe Coupee Catholic (New Roads); Sci-High (New Orleans); Helen Cox High School (Marrero); and John Quincy Adams Middle (Metairie). Students from Helen Cox, Ben Franklin, and Caddo Magnet High School earned college scholarships ranging from $1,000 to $5,000 for their performance at the National Contest.
For more information on Louisiana History Day and registration details please visit http://louisianahistoryday.org.
The National WWII Museum tells the story of the American Experience in the war that changed the world — why it was fought, how it was won, and what it means today. Dedicated in 2000 as The National D-Day Museum and designated by Congress as America’s National WWII Museum, it celebrates the American Spirit, the teamwork, optimism, courage and sacrifice of the men and women who served on the battlefront and the Home Front. For more information, call 877-813-3329 or 504-527-6012 or visit www.nationalww2museum.org. Follow us on Twitter at WWIImuseum or visit our Facebook fan page.