Letters to the Pilot

Tuesday, July 23, 2002

Thanks from a History Day student


Dr. Fred Moore, Buena Vista University, and Dr. Bill Kruse and the Storm Lake School Board:

I would like to express my gratitude for your support of the History Day program in the Storm Lake School District. This year, three Storm Lake students won at the state level and advanced to National Competition in College Park, Md. I was one of those students.

The three of us, along with our parents and teacher, Mrs. Roberta Moore, recently returned from our trip to Maryland. While in the Washington, D.C., area we took part in History Day competitions and activities, visited the Smithsonian museums, had supper in Chinatown, and toured the University of Maryland campus, among many other things. All of us making the trip had a wonderful time experiencing the nation's capital.

At nationals there is preliminary round judging in which every student who has advanced competes. From this round, judges choose 14 projects in each category to advance to finals. Both projects did wonderful in this round and represented Storm Lake very well. Unfortunately, neither of our projects were picked to compete in the final round. The outcome disappointed me, but I realize that the true victory is competing at this level. Every year, 700,000 students compete in History Day nationwide, but only 2,000 students compete at nationals. If it weren't for the support that you, the school board gives me, I wouldn't be able to be a member of this elite group.

Buena Vista University's support of National History Day in AEA V makes it possible for us to compete. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the university and all of the people associated with the History Day program within the university.

The countless things Buena Vista University does in support of the History Day program are extremely appreciated. I am grateful to have a local university that supports this program and its students. While in Maryland, I realized how fortunate I am to have this support. Many of the students I met in Maryland are not lucky enough to associate their project with a higher educational institution. I am very thankful to have a university in town that supports the program through workshops and competitions, as well as monetarily.

I would specifically like to thank Bill Feis and Dixee Bartholomew-Feis. They both put much effort into the program in our region. Both professors are deeply involved in assisting students with their projects. I often come to them with questions on topics, rules, presentations and bibliographies. This assistance allows me to present a quality project that fits the guidelines of the program. Also, without Professor Bartholomew-Feis' coordination of NHD in AEA V we would not have a regional competition at which to compete. I am very grateful for Dixee and Bill's involvement in the program - their work has made all of my opportunities possible.

The success of myself and the other History Day students in Storm Lake would not be possible if not for your university. The history department at Buena Vista guides and assists us in so many ways. Our success is due in a large part to that guidance. So, once again, I would like to give my thanks to Buena Vista University, Bill Feis and Dixie Bartholomew-Feis, the history department students, and specifically you, Dr. Moore, for all of the support that you give to me and other History Day students.

For the past four years I have participated in this program under the supervision of Mrs. Moore. My wonderful teacher has done everything she can to make Storm Lake students successful in History Day competition. She has taught us to live and breathe History Day, and for this reason she was awarded the Senior Division Teacher of the Year Award for History Day in Iowa. This is an honor Mrs. Moore truly deserves. At state competition Storm Lake won the award for being the best represented school in the Senior Division. Without Mrs. Moore's guidance this would not be possible. I would like to thank Mrs. Moore for all the assistance she has given me in the way of History Day and I know that no amount of gratitude could equal the hard work she puts into the program.

My experiences from this trip or my involvement in the program will not soon be forgotten. Because of your support, I was able to create memories of a lifetime and develop many useful skills. I have spoken to many students from across the United States that compete in National History Day. Most of these students come from school districts where the History Day program is not school supported. These students complete the projects without the support of a teacher or a school board and are responsible for all of the fees for the program. They made me realize how lucky I am to go to school in a district that supports its students like you do. And for this, I would once again like to thank you.

Rachel Hustedt,

Storm Lake