Central Academy History Day Competitors Advance to State Competition

Twelve Central Academy students will compete in the state History Day competition on Monday, April 29 at the State Historical Building.

Winning projects were selected at the district History Day competition held on April 6 at Grandview University. Des Moines students competed against all Central Iowa high schools. Only the top two projects in each category are selected to advance to the state competition each year. State winners advance to the National History Day competition held in Washington, DC.

This year’s History Day theme was ‘Turning Points in History.’ Central Academy teachers Canada Snyder, Amy Finnegan and Diane Morain organized the project to be cross curricular in AP US history and American Literature so students could learn the connections between research and historical writing, American literature and American history.

“We are very proud of all the students who participated in the history day contest and realize the amount of work and dedication required for this year-long project,” said Canada Snyder, Central Academy AP US History teacher. “We are excited to see our students compete at the state level and wish them the very best.”

Students who advanced to the state History Day competition and their home schools are:

Jake & Ted Appel Group Website: Power and the Louisiana Purchase Roosevelt
Lily Comito & Riley Johnson Group Performance: Woodstock ’69: How it Changed a Nation Roosevelt
Michael Duede Ind. Website: James Van Allen, The Explorer Lincoln
Elena Hildebrandt Ind. Performance: Pearl McGill Roosevelt
Vaughn Hommerding Ind. Website: The Impact of Psychotropic Medication Roosevelt
Liz Macro Ind. Exhibit: Lifting the Bamboo Curtain Roosevelt
Cole Rehbein Ind. Performance: Kit Carson: Tamer of the West Lincoln
Anna & Elaina Steenson Group Documentary: Shostakovich: A Voice for the People Roosevelt
Ryan Utke Paper: The Development of Calculus Hoover

In addition, the following students also won special awards at the district competition:

  • Geneva Gaukel (Roosevelt) – Superior knowledge of topic for her website Jackie Robinson: Breaking the Racial Barrier
  • Ellen Leys (Roosevelt) – Outstanding bibliography/local topic for her paper The U of I: A Cornerstone of Women’s Rights
  • Tyler Stone (Roosevelt) – Outstanding bibliography for his website, The Ascent of Modern Biology: Charles Darwin and the Theory of Evolution (and was also runner-up to State)
  • Ryan Utke (Hoover) – Superior knowledge of topic for his paper The Development of Calculus

National History Day (NHD) is an exciting academic enrichment program that helps students discover historical issues, ideas, people, and events. This year-long academic adventure fosters students’ enthusiasm for learning and their love for history. The National History Day in Iowa program has been coordinated by the State Historical Society of Iowa since 1994. Major funding comes from the State Historical Society, Inc. of Iowa City, the Obermann-Beck Foundation, and the American Legion of Iowa Foundation.