On April 26 and 27, roughly 1,000 students from across the Commonwealth will meet at the University of Louisville for the 51st annual Kentucky Junior Historical Society Conference and Kentucky History Day.
During their time in the Kentucky Junior Historical Society, KJHS students conduct research individually and in groups, cultivating skills of communication, collaboration and creativity and critical thinking.
Working in-depth on a personally-chosen project, participants collect oral histories, restore local landmarks, create dramatic interpretations of historical events and develop websites, competing to be one of the top students who will take their project to the University of Maryland in a bid for national honors.
The culmination of a year of work may lead up to just one day, but the impact can transform a student's life.
Take Emma, for example. "This has made a huge impact on Emma’s life," writes her mother, Rebecca. As a young child, Emma had a pronounced speech impediment affecting her confidence speaking in a public setting. Through years of speech therapy and small class settings she was able to present to her classmates, but it was her involvement with Kentucky History Day that changed everything.
"Kentucky History Day gave Emma an opportunity to become an expert in her topic of choice, which in turn, made her feel like she could speak with academic authority. The issue wasn’t about public speaking anymore; it was about sharing her expertise."
To ensure that any qualifying student has the opportunity to compete on the national level, the Kentucky Historical Society subsidizes the cost of each student's trip to Washington D.C. and the University of Maryland.
Donors are the people who make this dream a reality – state funding isn't available to send one single student to National History day.
Join Rebecca, Emma and other supporters of history education on April 24th as the KHS Foundation, in partnership with the Kentucky Nonprofit Network, participates in Kentucky Gives Day, a special 24-hour day of giving.
During this one-day event you can make a tax-deductible donation to the Kentucky Historical Society Foundation, instantly making Kentucky History Day a reality for more students like Emma!
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KJHS is administered by the Kentucky Historical Society, which is an agency of the Kentucky Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet and is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums. KHS is committed to helping people understand, cherish and share Kentucky's history by providing connections to the past, perspective on the present and inspiration for the future. For more about the Kentucky Historical Society and its programs, visit www.history.ky.gov.