Students prepare for State History Day

April 19, 2011 — by Megan Benzing and Cecilia Hollenhorst

This year, more students qualified for the National History Day State competition than in any previous year. The state competition, scheduled for April 30 at the DoubleTree Airport hotel in San Jose, will be showcasing 16 different entries from 31 Saratoga students.

This year, more students qualified for the National History Day State competition than in any previous year. The state competition, scheduled for April 30 at the DoubleTree Airport hotel in San Jose, will be showcasing 16 different entries from 31 Saratoga students.

According to librarian Kevin Heyman, the breakdown of entries from Saratoga is: Group Documentary (2), Individual Exhibit (2), Group Exhibit(2), Individual Performance (2), Group Performance (1), Individual Website (2), Group Website (3) and Historical Paper (2).

After the first round of judging from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. any entries that qualify will compete in a final round of judging from 7-10 p.m.; the awards ceremony will take place May 1 at 9 a.m.

Junior Kenneth Leung’s group of five’s exhibit on the Vietnam War qualified for State.

“They judge you on how well your project relates to the theme of the year’s history day topic,” said Leung. This year’s topic is Debate and Diplomacy: successes, failures and consequences.

Junior Alton Fong and his group, juniors Vikas Nookala and Peter Chen, created a website on the Cuban Missile crisis and also qualified for the state competition.

“I think this year’s history topic is extremely relevant to what our country has done,” said Fong. “It gives us a better understanding of our country’s achievements and its failures.”

Between the county and state competitions, students attempt to make changes that judges suggested to improve their projects, as well as prepare for new questions that the judges may ask.

“[The judges] sometimes ask questions about how well you know your topic,” said Leung, “but we got all of our research done first semester, now it’s just the visual project.”

At the National History Day County competition, held on March 19, each county sends three entries in each category, said Heyman. California has 58 counties, meaning there could be as many as 174 entries in each category. California will send the top two qualifiers to the National History Day
Competition, which is held at the University of Maryland in June.

“Saratoga has never qualified an entry for the National competition,” said Heyman. “The competition at the State championships is fierce. Since we have very strong entries in every category, I am hopeful that this is the year that Saratoga sends competitors to Nationals.”

On April 21, a schedule will come out with the exact time each group will be competing. Documentaries and performances are open to the public during judging, but exhibits can only be viewed from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. on the day of the competition.

State Qualifiers:

Alina Sample, Sarah Lensch, Nicole Shadman, Olivia Chock, Mac Hyde, Brian Leung, Kenneth Leung, Danielle Savage, Savid Adler, Michael Chang, Arnav Dugar, David Eng, Vikas Nookla, Peter Chen, Alton Fong, Vivian Tsai, Elaine Chou, Stephanie Ong, Jocelyn Takahashi, Antara Rao, Meghana Rao , Megan Yen, Christine Tseng, Sanjana Chetia, Jennifer Yang, Alex Mabanta, Ariella Yendler, Josh Harris, Michael Coe, Anushree Dugar, Myron Zhang

2 views this week