History Buffs Display Strengths at History Competition


Annie Qiao

Prior to freshman Grace Wen’s presentation and interview, co-president and freshman Jenny Won quizzes Wen with pre-written and carefully-crafted possible interview questions.

Annie Qiao and John Xie

Six members of National History Day (NHD) Club have been working diligently since November of last year to prepare for the yearly NHD-OC competition hosted at the Orange County Department of Education (OCDE) on March 10. This year’s theme for all projects was “Conflict and Compromise.”

Freshmen Angela Kim, Sandra Lu, Jenny Won and sophomore Julia Kim were chosen as finalists on March 10 and then selected on March 14 to compete in the state competition from May 5-6.

Students can participate by creating a performance, documentary, historical paper, exhibit or website on an event or person of their choice. During the competition, participants present their projects and are judged and interviewed by history teachers from Orange County.

For most of the morning, students ranging from elementary to high schoolers either enjoyed the rainy day with their classmates or walked around to view the various projects that are presented around campus.

“[NHD] is a great competition; it would be nice if we get more high school kids involved,” club adviser Wind Ralston said. “It is great if we get a group together that really wants to do this and [is] passionate about it.”

NHD Club is one of the more academically-intensive clubs on campus; participants are required to perform extensive research before beginning their projects.

“I just use a lot of the free time I already have into researching because I actually love the research, and I actually thought that it wasn’t work but something else fun,” club member and sophomore Elliot Yu said.

The club is designed to ensure that all participants are kept on track with deadlines throughout their projects, according to co-president Won. Gathered in Ralston’s classroom, the club meets every other Wednesday and often spends its time peer editing each other’s projects. Regular emails and updates on deadlines ensure that all members are communicating online.

Since the state competitors have been announced, Won and Kim will help the participants prepare for the competition and fundraise to pay for the costs of registration.

“I extremely enjoy participating in NHD, because not only does it give you different forms of participation, such as documentaries, websites or papers, but it really allows me to express my interest in history,” club member and freshman Grace Wen said. “I often find it hard to communicate with someone my interest in history, so having NHD is really an opportunity for me to express myself.”