PMHS students win multiple awards at the New York State History Day Contest


Mark Tarazi

In past years, students from Pelham schools have done exceptionally well in National History Day Contests. Students work hard to perfect their projects to be sent in and judged at multiple levels of competition. This year, four PMHS students succeeded at the New York State History Day Virtual Contest with one group advancing to the national contest.

Juniors Jack Anderson, Stephen Liaskos, and Mark Tarazi received first place in the category Senior Group Website for their website “Television’s Role in the Civil Rights Movement: Shedding Light On Unseen Problems and Causing Social Change.” As a result, they will compete at nationals in June. Their website describes the significant role of television in spreading awareness about the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s and 70s. In a time when television was gaining popularity, this awareness was able to cause needed reform and gain attention on the Civil Rights Movement.

Sophomore Julia Meyerson won the award, “Outstanding Entry in Native American or Ethnic History” for her entry in the category Senior Individual Documentary. Her documentary explains the critical importance of the Navajo Code in World War 2 and the lack of recognition for the Navajo people.

“I’ve been pretty interested about code-breaking, especially the development of it during World War 2,” Meyerson says. “For a project two years ago, I learned about the Navajo Code Talkers who were somewhat on the margins of history, despite the fact that it was roughly 400 of them that essentially guaranteed the US victory in the Pacific Front. It seemed like a great opportunity to research this topic.”

National History Day is typically an in-person event in which participants can go and present their projects. However, due to the pandemic, the competition was held virtually.

“Usually it’s pretty cool to go around during the National History Day Contest and see everybody else’s projects. It was kind of disappointing not being able to see other people’s projects this year,” Meyerson expresses.

A link to Jack, Stephen, and Mark’s website: https:\\\48473560

A link to Julia’s documentary: