Two BCPS Students Receive Maryland History Day Awards, One Moves On To National Competition


Credit: Baltimore County Public Schools

BALTIMORE COUNTY - Two BCPS middle school students received awards at Maryland History Day.

Vedansh Sawhney of Parkville Middle School and Lila Kassouf of Dumbarton Middle School earned honors in the 2021 Maryland History Day competition.

To participate in the competition, students work solo or in small groups to create original documentary films, exhibits, performances, research papers, or websites exploring a historical topic of their choice on an annual theme. This year’s theme is “Communication in History: The Key to Understanding.”

Sawhney and Kassouf were among more than 300 middle and high school students who submitted extensive historical research projects online for the 2021 Maryland History Day competition.

In past years, the competition was held in person, but due to the lasting impacts of COVID-19, Maryland Humanities once again administered the contest in a digital format.

Sawhney, a student of teacher Molly Ricciardi, won second place in the junior individual website category for research on Nazi propaganda. As a second-place winner, Sawhney qualifies to compete in the National History Day competition.

Kassouf, a student of teacher Kathleen Barry, won the junior division Award for Excellence in Legal & Constitutional History, sponsored by Cynthia Raposo and Joseph Furey. Kassouf researched “How Frederick Douglass Viewed the Constitution.”

Baltimore County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Darryl L. Williams congratulated the students for their outstanding research.

“We are so proud of our students Vedansh Sawhney and Lila Kassouf for their achievements in the Maryland History Day competition and so proud of their teachers Molly Ricciardi and Kathleen Barry for preparing them to succeed,” Williams said.

Sawhney will be among students from six Maryland counties and Baltimore City to represent Maryland in the National History Day competition. They will compete among 3,000 participants from across the nation and beyond.

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