BELTON, Texas (KWTX) Maya Richardson and Emily Muslovski are the first students in Bell County and Belton Independent School District to compete and place at “National History Day”.
The two attend North Belton Middle School and traveled to the University of Maryland College, Park and placed 5th in the nation with their documentary.
The competition is for students across the nation who conduct research on historical topics. This year the theme was "Taking a Stand in History" and students had to figure out a way to reach the audience.
Students are split up into divisions based on their age group. Categories included performances, papers, websites, documentaries and more.
The road to nationals started when Social Studies teach Elizabeth Howson made an announcement for students who were interested in “History Fair”.
Richardson and Muslovski decided to do a documentary on Żegota a secret organization that helped Jews escape during World War II.
Muslovski says persecution is still among the world today and they wanted to highlight someone standing up to it.
"They would not only risk their lives, but their families as well,” Muslovski said.
“Across the world persecution is still happening and we are glad that we can share that people always have a choice."
The dynamic duo worked hard for ten months advancing from school levels, to state and even finals at national. The road was tough and hard to deal with but they knew they had a story to tell.
“It was actually kind of hard to find pictures because they are such a secret organization,” Richardson said. “A lot of them are really gruesome and hard to look at.”
The two were shocked when they heard their name called for fifth place. They were also recognized for outstanding entry from the state of Texas.
Both students are grateful to everyone who supported them throughout their journey.