University of Minnesota
Immigration History Research Center

Immigration History Research Center's home page.

2007 History Day

State History Day Participation

Background and Details

Andy Urban, IHRC Faculty and Student Advisory Council member, worked with American Studies professor Lary May to select the 2007 winners (judges’ comments below). Congratulations to the following students:

Junior Division:

Winner:   Ian Glidden - Horizon Middle School 

Title: From High Spirits to Heartbreak:Medical Exams Curb  Immigration

"This exhibit looks at European immigration to Ellis Island and the medical tests and quarantines that immigrants were subjected to. Designed in an innovative manner, the exhibit allows visitors to question the relationship between immigration and public health, and to explore how nineteenth and early-twentieth century officials linked these issues. This exhibit complicates the idea that the U.S. greeted all immigrants with open arms, showing that fears about disease weighed heavily in the government's mind."

Senior Division:

Winner:  Marysa Lai, Joe Simon, Angel Rien from DeLaSalle High School

Title:  The Vietnamese People: A Triumphant and Tragic Search for Freedom

"This documentary film on Vietnamese immigration offers a nuanced look at the tragedy and triumph that comes with having to leave one's home and establish a new one. The film uses oral histories and interviews to illustrate the difficulties immigrants faced as "boat people" fleeing Vietnam, as refugees in camps awaiting placement, and as immigrants forced to adjust and cope with different American ways and discrimination. The film explores how Vietnamese immigrants, despite being political refugees in part because of the US's Cold War policy, were nonetheless often forced to make it on their own. The film alludes to the present-day Iraq War and how American foreign policy there might provoke a new refugee crisis."


Return to Top