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Tuesday through Saturday10 a.m. - 5 p.m
Eugene and Marilyn Glick Indiana History Center 450 West Ohio Street, Indianapolis, IN 46202
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National History Day Announces Rural and Urban Outreach Program Supported by the Bezos Family Foundation

October 26, 2023

National History Day® (NHD) is proud to announce the first phase of its Inclusive History Initiative (IHI), funded by a grant from the Bezos Family Foundation. This initiative is a series of programs and publications that promote diversity, equity, access and inclusion within the NHD network and organization. Inclusive history refers not only to a diversity of topics, events, people and ideas but also to how NHD can make participation more accessible to students and educators from various backgrounds, educational levels and socioeconomic statuses.

The first phase of this program will involve a program piloting outreach to urban and rural schools in four states. In partnership with NHD affiliate programs in Alabama, Indiana, North Carolina and Oklahoma, NHD will co-lead a series of professional development workshops to engage teachers and strengthen NHD programs in:

  • Jefferson County and Mobile County, Alabama (with the Alabama Humanities Alliance)
  • Marion County, Indiana (with the Indiana Historical Society)
  • Swain County and neighboring counties of western North Carolina (with the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources, Office of Archives and History)
  • Western Oklahoma (with the Oklahoma Historical Society)

“National History Day is proud to partner with the Bezos Family Foundation on this important initiative,” shared NHD Executive Director Dr. Cathy Gorn. “We are excited to collaborate with schools and teachers in these communities to engage more students in the process of historical research. Quality history education helps young people gain a deeper understanding of our shared history and encourages students to become involved and active citizens. By empowering students to develop historical literacy, critical thinking and digital literacy, NHD equips them with the tools to engage in their communities and shape the future. They are also empowered to bring missing narratives to light, investigating and sharing the historical experiences and contributions of people whose stories have not often been told.”

“For nearly 50 years, National History Day has bolstered an interest in history and civics education,” said Marilyn López, Program Officer of the Bezos Family Foundation. “We are excited to support their geographic expansion and ensure a more inclusive history is made available for all young people.”

The second phase of the Inclusive History Initiative will include expanding NHD’s Moving Freedom Forward series. This series of teacher sourcebooks will include essays from prominent historians, model lesson plans written by NHD master teachers, primary documents, graphic organizers, and other classroom-ready materials. In addition to the printed version, there will be an online video component featuring expert historians who will help place topics into historical context. The first volume (coming soon) focuses on African American history, and the second volume will focus on Jewish and Jewish American history.

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