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Hosova leads county in History Day effort

May 18, 2009

Washington County was well represented at Maryland History Day on April 25 at University of Maryland, Baltimore County.

More than 550 Maryland middle and high students competed for the honor of representing Maryland at National History Day.

Dominika Hosova from Boonsboro High School placed first in Senior Papers for the project, "Marian Rejewski."

Her historical paper focused on Rejewski, a Polish mathematician who helped build and later undermine the German "Enigma Machine" during World War II.

The "Enigma Machine" was a communications device used by the German military during the early years of the war.

She wasn't the only county student who had a good showing at the competition.

Sara Hetherington from Smithsburg Middle School received the Special Prize in Legal and Constitutional History, Junior Division, sponsored by Paul Mogin, Esquire, Williams and Connolly LLP, Washington, D.C., for the Individual Exhibit, "Chief Sitting Bull."

Loraine Viar from North Hagerstown High School received the Special Prize in Religious Freedom, Senior Division, sponsored by the Rev. Florence L. Ledyard, rector, St. Bartholomew's Episcopal Church, for the individual documentary "Pope John Paul II: A Beacon of Light in a World of Darkness."

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Marilou Chanel, Kirstie Coombs, Taylor Rigsby and Anne Rueckerl from Northern Middle School received the Barry A. Lanman Award for Oral History, Martha Ross Center for Oral History, UMBC, Junior Division, sponsored by John D. Willard V, for the group exhibit "Fred W. Besley: A Man of Vision."

Students qualifying for the statewide Maryland History Day competition were selected from more than 16,000 students from 16 counties and Baltimore City who entered projects at school and regional contests following this year's theme of "The Individual in History: Actions and Legacies."

The competition encourages students to develop their research and analytical skills. To that end, students worked individually or in groups to research and present findings for historical topics of their choice.

Student winners were chosen for both individual and group efforts in junior and senior divisions. Winners from five categories - research papers, museum-type exhibits, performances, Web sites and multimedia documentaries - will represent Maryland at the Kenneth E. Behring National History Day Contest June 14 to 18 at the University of Maryland in College Park.

The Maryland Humanities Council also recognized outstanding teachers with Maryland History Day District Teacher of the Year awards. From these, Margaret "Terri" O'Connell of Mayfield Woods Middle School was named the statewide Maryland History Day Teacher of the Year.

In Washington County, Donna Almany of Northern Middle School received the Washington County District History Day Teacher of the Year award.

For more information about Maryland History Day, contact Judy Dobbs at the Maryland Humanities Council at 410-685-4185 or jdobbs@mdhc.org.

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