Department of History

History Day

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History Day 2020 - CANCELED

"To ensure the safety of students, teachers, judges, and MNHS staff, the Minnesota Historical Society has made the difficult decision to suspend remaining in-person Regional History Day competitions and move them to a virtual format within the month of March.

Our nine remaining events would have brought together an intergenerational mix of almost 3,000 students, more than 650 judges, and spectators.

While we recognize this may cause inconvenience to parents/teachers and disappointment to students, making the decision now allows Minnesota History Day staff the lead time and staff capacity to rework the remaining Regional contests into a virtual format before State and National Contest deadlines. Thank you for your understanding and patience."


Breaking Barriers in History

Central Minnesota History Day Regional Competition - March 28, 2020

History Day at St. Cloud State

National History Day is a yearlong program that engages students in grades 6 through 12 in the study and analysis of history. Students choose a topic that relates to a national theme – the theme for 2020 is "Breaking Barriers in History" – and gather primary and secondary materials on that topic. The students then analyze the information they discover and present their findings at competitions in a dramatic performance, a documentary, a museum-like exhibit, or an historical paper. Local and regional competitions take place in early spring, the Minnesota History Day competition is in early May, and for students who advance to the final level, the national competition takes place each year in June at the University of Maryland, College Park. Learn more about the state contest and teacher registration.

History Day offers an opportunity for students to explore their interests in history in greater depth, accumulate valuable research and analytical skills, and discover for themselves the value of the study of the past. For the community, History Day offers a chance to participate as local students create their own learning opportunities and examine topics relating to world, national, state and local history. Judges will not only show support for students’ enthusiasm for history, but also will give students the opportunity to interact with leading citizens of the region and demonstrate to the students that this community has an interest in their projects and research. Past judges include current and emeriti history faculty from St. Cloud State University, history faculty from the College of St. Benedict and St. John’s University, state representatives and senators, graduate students in history, undergraduate history majors and Social Studies Teaching majors, as well as alumnae in both these areas, central Minnesota teachers and administrators.

St. Cloud State University has hosted this contest for over 25 years. It has enjoyed participation from public and private schools in St. Cloud, Sauk Rapids, Rice, Little Falls, Cold Spring, Murdock, Otsego, Forest Lake, Long Prairie, Willmar, Chisago Lakes, Buffalo, Milaca, St. Francis, Albany, St. Joseph, Cedar Creek, Eden Valley, Watkins, Zimmerman, St. Michael, Albertville, Holdingford, Big Lake, Becker, Princeton, Elk River, and Cokato, as well as a number of home schools and charter schools in central Minnesota.

The 2020 Contest is scheduled for Saturday, March 28, from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at Atwood Memorial Center. The awards ceremony will be held the same day at 2 p.m. in Ritchie Auditorium in Stewart Hall.

Topic Information: "Breaking Barriers in History"

The 2020 History Day theme is "Breaking Barriers in History". Students should look beyond the topics that first come to mind and begin to understand the many different areas of history that can connect to this theme.

History Day Helpers

We provide support for teachers and students involved with Central Minnesota Regional History Day.

2020 Interns: Zachary Griffiths, Samuel Poppen, Sonya Smetana, and Patricia Wollan: Our role is to provide direct student support through school visits and library days at St. Cloud State's University Library and the St. Cloud Public Library.

For further questions, please contact: Robert W. Galler, Chair, History Department,

St. Cloud State University, 720 - 4th Avenue South, St. Cloud, Minnesota 56301-4498


History Day Judging

Who:  People with an interest in History and want to make a difference in the lives of local students.

What:  Free lunch and free T-shirt provided for a fun filled day of judging History Day projects!

When: Saturday, March 28, 2020 approximately 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Where: Saint Cloud State University in the Atwood Memorial Center (AMC), Cascade Room

How to become a volunteer judge: Complete the online form.


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