First-place wins by Sonoran Science Academy students in the statewide National History Day competition during the school year resulted in the students traveling to Maryland this month to compete in the national competition.
Earlier this year, SSA middle-school students Abrielle Agron and Kaili Martinez took first place at the Arizona National History Day competition.
Abrielle garnered first place for her individual website, junior division, and in the “best use of historical newspapers” division, while Kaili earned first place in the individual exhibit category, junior division.
Also qualifying to compete at the nationals were Zakaria Lamri, who took second place in the historical paper category, junior division, and freshman Stephania Vasilieva, who placed first in the historical paper category, senior division.
“This accomplishment reflects our school’s belief in a sound liberal arts foundation, where subjects such as social science are considered equally as important as math and science. By understanding and embracing history, students are able to see the relevance and consequences of daily events,” SSA history teacher Amanda Hanson said.
From June 12-16, the foursome were at the University of Maryland, where they competed against students from all 50 states, the U.S. territories and international military bases.
Stephania competed in the senior division with her historical paper, “Napoleon: Between Two Wives and Two Empires.” The remaining three students competed in the junior division: Zakaria with his historical paper, “How Should A Ruler Act?,” Abrielle with her individual website, “The Jungle and the Controversy It Caused,” and Kaili with her individual exhibit, “The Churchill v. Chamberlain Debate.”
“While our students did not medal in the top three places of their respective categories, it was a great experience for them,” Hanson said. “They were able to meet students from around the world. They visited Washington, D.C., toured the Capitol building, and met with Sen. John McCain and Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords’ staff member Jim Dennany.”