Two OC projects named finalists at culminating National History Day event

Two projects from Orange County were named finalists at this year’s National History Day showdown in Maryland.

The 2018 National Contest, which was held June 10 through June 14 at the University of Maryland, featured more than 3,000 middle and high school students presenting documentaries, exhibits, papers, performances and websites connected to the theme “Conflict and Compromise in History.”

Zane Pert and his National History Day project
Zane Pert of Shorecliffs Middle School in the Capistrano Unified School District was named a National History Day finalist for his exhibit, “The Mono Lake Conflict: A Legendary Water Compromise.”

Sixty-two individual and team entries made the trip from California, including seven from schools in the Irvine Unified School District and one from Capistrano Unified.

Jasmine Chhabria of Irvine’s Sierra Vista Middle School was announced as a finalist in the Junior Division for her individual performance, “Mendez v. Westminster: Conflict and Compromise in Segregated Education.” Zane Pert of Shorecliffs Middle School in Capistrano Unified earned similar honors for his individual exhibit, “The Mono Lake Conflict: A Legendary Water Compromise.”

Additionally, Alvand Daliri of University High School in Irvine earned “Outstanding in State” honors in the Senior Division for her historical paper, “The Oneida Community: Conflict with Socioreligious Norms and Eventual Compromise.”

Projects from schools in San Diego, Riverside and San Mateo counties earned first-, second- and third-place medals, respectively, at the National History Day finals. For a complete list of medalists, visit

Each fall, more than 600,000 students in the U.S. begin the process of researching and creating National History Day projects that go on to compete in district, county, state and national contests. Entries, based on an annual theme, can take the form of museum-type exhibits, documentaries, websites, original performances or traditional research papers.

The National History Day-Orange County competition drew more than 450 young historians to the OCDE campus in March. The top entries advanced to the California National History Day event, which brought nearly 1,500 students from 270 schools to Rocklin, Calif. on May 5 and May 6.