More than 275 young students are headed to the Michigan History Day western regional contest at Grand Valley State University Saturday, March 16, from 9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. at the Kirkhof Center, Allendale Campus.
The West Michigan area middle and high school students have performed self-directed research on an individually chosen topic and will present their work through the allied disciplines of art, literature, music, drama, and visual communications, in addition to writing. This year’s contest, following the theme, “Turning Points in History: People, Ideas, Events,” will include performances, presentations, interviews and questions from judges in two divisions: Junior (grades 6-8) and Senior (grades 9-12). There is also a noncompetitive Youth division for fourth and fifth graders who may come to the competition for judging.
Entrants present in one of five categories: individual paper, and individual or group exhibits, documentaries, websites and performances. Judges are faculty and graduates from Grand Valley’s history department, local teachers and community historians. They will select the top three entries in each division and category, which will advance to the state contest, held at Saginaw Valley State University, on April 27.
It is the goal of the program to empower students with research skills, critical thinking skills and outlets for creative expression, which will enhance their academic abilities in all areas of study. Sponsors for the local event include Grand Valley State University College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the Department of History, The Historical Society of Michigan, The Michigan Council for History Education, Meijer, Amway, and The Richard and Helen DeVos Foundation.
For more information contact Sean O’Neill, professor of history, at (616) 331-3325.