National History Day in Missouri Students Selected for Virtual Smithsonian Exhibit

The National History Day contest is currently underway for 2022! Hosted virtually this year, students from all over the United States are competing in five project categories: documentary, exhibit, performance, paper, and website.

Recently, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History selected 51 student National History Day projects to showcase as part of a two-week online exhibition. The project of two eighth-grade students from Odessa Middle School was selected to take part. The interested public can view The Newsboy Strike: Fighting for a Diplomatic Compromise online now through June 27 on the Smithsonian Learn Lab website.

Students Kiley Thomas and Rebekah Thurston, with assistance from teacher Paula Hawk of Odessa Middle School, prepared the showcased exhibit which explores the debate over poor working conditions for newsboys in New York during the 1890s and the diplomatic actions taken to improve working environments.

“Creating this project was difficult and we had a lot of bumps along the way, which made it a great learning experience,” said Thurston. “In the end, it was so worth it.”

National History Day in Missouri is sponsored and organized by the State Historical Society of Missouri, in partnership with Missouri Humanities and additional sponsors.

“The opportunity for students to showcase their projects on a national scale at institutions like the National Museum of American History provides them not only with real-time experience in the public history field, but also with valuable experience for their academic and professional pursuits,” said Danielle, Griego, educational program coordinator for the State Historical Society of Missouri.

Find the winners from the state contest on the National History Day in Missouri website at The awards ceremony for the national contest will be held on June 18 on the NHD website.