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Five USM Projects Advance to National History Day Finals

Congratulations to all 32 University School of Milwaukee Middle School HistoriCats, who presented 22 projects at the National History Day state competition on Saturday, April 13 in Madison, Wisconsin. Five USM projects were selected as national finalists, with students earning the opportunity to go to the national competition at the University of Maryland in June. Two other projects earned alternate recognition, while two additional projects won special awards.

“To say I’m proud of all of these young historians is an understatement,” said Chuck Taft, 8th grade American studies history teacher and history department chair. “It was a great day to be their history coach! A special thanks goes out to Laurie Walczak [8th grade American studies English and Tower Project teacher; Middle School English Department chair] and Francine Eppelsheimer [Middle School librarian] who help make these challenging yet rewarding research projects possible, and of course to the parents and families of our young historians who supported them along the way and spent the better part of the day with everybody in Madison.”

National Finalists (Students are all in 8th grade)
Zion Aiken-Velez and Alyssa Howe: “Mamie Bradley: Taking the Fight to the People”
Sarah Bentley: “Travis Roy, Triumph After Tragedy”
Cassidy Cleveland and Regan Staudt: “The All-American Redheads: Barnstorming Stereotypes and Paving the Way for Women”
Nathan Miller: “Isaac Cline: Tragic Natural Disasters Leading to Triumphant Weather Forecasting
Ronan More O'Ferrall and Max Watchmaker: “The Irish Potato Famine, from Oppression to Opportunity”

The following 8th grade students earned special awards:
Local History Award: Capri Oliviero and India Vielehr: “Jim Zwerg: Rides Towards Equality” (Also second alternate for nationals)
Geography in History Award: Margot Ferrer: “Agent Orange: A Chemical Chain Reaction”

The following 8th grade students presented at state:

INDIVIDUAL DOCUMENTARY
Alexandra Berryman: Aretha Franklin and the Civil Rights Movement
Talia Ciralsky: MKULTRA: The CIA’s Legacy of Mind Control
Adam Cotton: The History of Leaded Gasoline

INDIVIDUAL EXHIBIT
Hunter Kauffman: The Product of Tragedy

INDIVIDUAL PAPER
Sofia Lew: Destiny over Decency: The Annexation of Hawaii
Maddie Miracle: Terror and Tragedy in the Osage Valley
Dominik Nikolic: Yugoslavia During World War Two

INDIVIDUAL PERFORMANCE
Evelyn Graham: Nellie Bly Behind Asylum Bars
Lauryn Dixon: Patron Saint of the Rebellion

INDIVIDUAL WEBSITE
Julius Zakaria: Keeping the Culture (First Alternate for Nationals)

GROUP EXHIBIT
Einthiri Mudili, Mara Sadek, and Isabella Vesely: Federal Project Number One: Pursuing Creativity During a Time of Tragedy
Will Berrien, Jack Klemen, and Christian Hamilton Jones: Sunrise Over Iwo Jima

GROUP PERFORMANCE
Sophia Amplo and Katie Frick: Helen and Annie, From Teacher to Miracle Worker

GROUP WEBSITE
Jake DeToro and Casey Hakami: Earl Lloyd: Trailblazing into a New Era
Asma Kazi and Neomi Spellman: The Bullets of Flu
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