Two Folly Beach residents advance to state history day competition

Special to The Folly Current

Folly Beach residents Sam Hull and Madison Grant were among 20 Palmetto Scholars Academy students who showed off their appreciation of the past and earned the right to put their knowledge on display at the state level of the National History Day competition.

The regional National History Day competition took place at Charleston Southern University on Saturday, Feb. 20. Palmetto Scholars Academy students submitted 10 projects that earned berths to the state championships to be held on April 23 at Westwood High School in Blythewood.

National History Day is an academic enrichment program for students in grades 6-12. Students select topics connected to an annual theme and complete their own in-depth research on the topic. This year, the annual theme is “Exploration, Encounter, and Exchange in History.” Students present their conclusions by creating museum-style exhibits, media documentaries, research papers, interactive websites, and dramatic performances.  At the regional level, judges chose three projects per category to advance to state without designating first, second and third places.

At each level of competition, students share their work with their peers, historians, educators and professionals in related fields as they compete for special awards and the opportunity to advance to the next level of competition, which ultimately reaches the national round to be held at the University of Maryland in June.

“I was so excited and nervous throughout the competition,” Hull said, who advanced in the Individual Exhibit category with her project, Leonardo Da Vinci and the Study of Human Anatomy. “It was really interesting to see how other kids interpreted the theme and how a lot of them picked stuff that was based on South Carolina history.”

Grant, an 8ht grader, teamed with classmates Camryn Beaufort, Brandi Buckley and Mary-Margaret Futch to advance in the Junior Group Exhibit category with a project about Mansa Musa, a 14th century African emperor.

The students were led by faculty advisers Lisa Hakamiun, Justin Gadsden and Leslie Sullivan.

The program continues to grow with more than 500,000 students participating annually from across the nation and overseas. The National History Day program in South Carolina is coordinated by Mary Katherine Marshall and sponsored by the Community Museum Society.

Palmetto Scholars Academy is a North Charleston public charter school for gifted and talented students in grades 6-12. As a member of the state school district, it is open to any resident of South Carolina.

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