Nearly 3,000 students representing schools from throughout the United States, surrounding territories and countries around the world gathered at the University of Maryland, College Park from June 12–16 to compete in the 2016 Kenneth E. Behring National History Day Competition. Two students from Calvert County Public Schools earned top awards.
Parker Nickels of Northern Middle School was honored with the bronze medal in the Junior Individual Exhibit category for his project “Brainstorm! William James – Pioneer of the Mental Frontier.”
Brian Holt of Huntingtown High School was honored with the U.S. Constitution Award, sponsored by the National Archives and Records Administration, for his senior individual website project, “The Iran-Contra Affair: Patriotism or Politics?”
Supervisor of Social Studies Rebecca Bowen said, “Brian and Parker worked exceptionally hard on their projects throughout the entire school year and truly went above and beyond with their research and presentation. To say that that their projects were amazing is an understatement. When I first reviewed their projects, I knew that Calvert County Public Schools was going to be a serious contender at the state and national levels.”
According to a press release from Maryland Humanities, the National History Day program allows students to explore an annual theme through research using primary and secondary sources and to create a final product to display their work. The 2016 competition encouraged students to contemplate “Exploration, Encounter, Exchange in History” and select a project in one of the following five categories: exhibit, performance, website, paper or documentary. Maryland students competed in school and county competitions as well as the statewide contest Maryland History Day, which is coordinated by Maryland Humanities, before advancing to the national competition in College Park.
Maryland Humanities is a statewide, educational nonprofit organization that creates and supports educational experiences in the humanities that inspire all Marylanders to embrace lifelong learning, exchange ideas openly and enrich their communities.