PASCAGOULA, MS (WLOX) - A group of students from Colmer Middle School in Pascagoula are getting ready for the trip of a lifetime. The students will travel to Washington D.C. next month to compete in the National History Day competition.
Students from all 50 states will be in attendance. There will even be students representing several foreign countries. The students and their teacher set this goal months ago.
At Monday’s school assembly, the nine students competing were cheered by their classmates. Later in the library, some of the parents were cheering, as well.
It all began with a research paper. It grew from there, according to teacher Larry Bates.
“When they finished the final conclusion, they had a phenomenal. I would say even collegiate caliber research paper,” said Bates.
The students are competing in five different categories.
“They had a website, a performance, an exhibit, a documentary or research paper that had footnotes and things of that nature,” Bates explained.
For these students learning and competing go hand in hand.
“It was fun because I got to learn a lot about history and about something that I didn’t know about,” said student Justice Hasty.
The historic topics they tackled explored details beyond the actual event.
“My project was on the French Revolution, and I really enjoyed learning all about this history and the fact that if you put power in the wrong hands it can go bad really, really fast,” said student Shirley Cornelius.
The students say the work was very hard, very long and very intense. But they also say, in the long run, it was well worth it.
“I’ve never been to Washington D.C., and I feel like it’s a very big accomplishment for me to be going to such a big place like this, and it’s one of the goals that I’ve been setting for myself. So, this is a very good honor,” said student Ja’Shaylee Minor.
And with this project in the books and ready for judging, the sky is the limit for the students.
“I really hope that that it gives me bigger opportunities in the future since I do enjoy learning about history, and I’m a writer,” said Cornelius.
The Pascagoula-Gautier School District has contributed a good bit of money for the students to make the trip. But more donations are needed to help offset the cost. If you’d like to give any amount, call Colmer Middle School at 228-938-6473.