History continues to have a place in the present at Northshore Junior High.
Two students placed in the top five at the National History Day national contest in College Park, Maryland on June 16, the best pair of finishes in the seven-year stretch of entries from the Bothell junior high school.
Marissa McMaster finished fourth in the senior division for individual exhibits for her display on the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project. Daniel Ng finished fifth in the junior division for his paper on Wernher von Braun.
The contest had a theme of exploration and encounters, and drew 11 Northshore Junior High students to Maryland under the guidance of history teacher Bill Boniface.
McMaster, a ninth-grader, was competing for the second consecutive year after taking Boniface’s history class last year.
“She came to me this year and said she’d like to do it again,” Boniface said.
McMaster took first in the regional competition in March, then took first at the state competition at Green River Community College on April 23. Her exhibit project covered the first space flight mission in which the United States and Soviet Russia combined forces in the mid-1970s.
At nationals, each state picks an outstanding entry from the junior and senior divisions. Washington selected McMaster.
Ng’s paper on the German rocket scientist responsible for getting the United States to the moon was the first paper from Northshore Junior High to reach the national contest.
Ng took third at the regional competition, but because contestants are allowed to revise their work after receiving feedback from the judges, he returned to take first at the state competition.
Northshore Junior High performed well at state as a school, taking the Most Outstanding School trophy for the junior division for the third time in the last four years.
The contest, which chooses a new theme for each year, includes some 600,000 participants at the regional level. Around 3,000 students make the national competition, which began in 1980.
The 2017 theme is “Taking A Stand In History.”