Amanda, Victoria, Emily and Valentina, students at Applegarth Middle School in Monroe Township, NJ and under the guidance of their teacher Christy Viszoki, contacted me a few months ago to request assistance in the research they were doing for their competition project. The theme for this year's competition was Conflict and Compromise in History. Students who participated were required to choose a topic and make a presentation in one of four different ways: an exhibit, a documentary film, a paper or a performance. For their topic, the girls chose to focus on the controversy that surrounded Disney's America, the unrealized theme park that had been conceptualized for an area in northern Virginia just outside of the nation's capital. Their project, an exhibit entitled "Disney's America Exposed," earned top honors at the competition held this past Saturday.
I was very flattered when the girls contacted me and asked me to share my knowledge and insights of the Disney's America project. And it was a real thrill when Christy contacted me over the weekend with the very exciting news. She noted, " The girls always go above and beyond in their work. They are amazing students, although even more significantly, exceptional human beings. I am very proud of and happy for them."
The girls now move on to the New Jersey state competition on May 3rd, and if successful there, will continue on to the final National History Day competition at the University of Maryland in mid-June.
Join me in extending Amanda, Victoria, Emily and Valentina congratulations and in wishing them the best of luck in the state competition.
Pictured above: Emily Jarosiewicz, Amanda Chin.