MCS Library holds first virtual ME National History Day

National History Day in Maine held their first ever virtual State Contest May 2-4. Nearly 700 students from across the state participated in one of three regional contests that took place earlier this year. Finalist from these events were invited to compete in the state contest that was originally slated to take place in-person at the University of Maine. The state contest consisted of 225 students and 141 entries with over 70 judges from across the country assessing student work. All 52 first and second place winners are now preparing to compete against the top placing entries from all state affiliates at the national contest taking place June 14-20.  Special prizes were also awarded to projects highlighting Maritime History (sponsored by the National Maritime Historical Society), the Suffrage Centennial (sponsored by the Maine Suffrage Centennial Collaborative), and Maine’s Bicentennial (sponsored by the Maine Cultural Affairs Council).  A list of all the winners, a virtual showcase highlighting all the entries, and the award ceremony can be accessed at the links below.

Planning for next year’s contest season has already begun. Next year’s theme is Communication in History: The Key to Understanding. Regional contests dates have not been decided, but the state contest is tentative at the University of Maine on May 1, 2021.

National History Day in Maine is a co-curricular academic program that fosters in-depth research and critical analysis skills for students in grades 6-12.  Students select a topic relating to a national theme-this year’s theme is Breaking Barriers in History. Using primary and secondary resources, students research a topic and present their conclusions as a paper, documentary, exhibit, performance, or website. Projects are judged by professionals in the field including historians, librarians, archivists, educators, museum personnel, and lovers of history who volunteer their time to encourage young scholars.

Maine National History Day is co-organized by the University of Maine and the Margaret Chase Smith Library.  This year-long educational program for grade 6-12 students is made possible by the support of organizations and individuals throughout the state.  The major financial contributors this season are the Margaret Chase Smith Foundation, Museum LA, John Bapst Memorial High School, four units from UMaine, Orono (the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, the College of Education and Human Development, the Clement and Linda McGillicuddy Humanities Center, and the Department of History), the Maine Masonic College, the Maine Humanities Council, and the Maine Historical Society. In addition, donations of time and money from scores of schools, teachers, parents, students, and local historical societies and cultural organizations from across the state make the program possible.

2020 Winners list:–Winners.pdf

2020 Virtual Showcase:

2020 Award Ceremony: