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Utah Students Excel at National History Day

COLLEGE PARK, Md. — Eight Utah middle- and high-school students placed among the top entries in the nation at the annual National History Day Competition at the University of Maryland, College Park. These exceptional young historians placed in the Top Ten in their categories among 3,000 competitors at the national meet.

Utah’s top finishers:

Outstanding Junior State Entry: Zachary Jessop, Midvale Middle School (Salt Lake): “Each Life is Worth a World: Gil and Eleanor Kraus and the Rescue of Fifty Jewish Children from Nazi Germany,” Junior Individual Documentary.

Outstanding Senior State Entry: Asher Ireland, Timberline Middle School (Alpine): “When the Jews Stood up to Grant: The Story of General Order No. 11,” Senior Individual Performance.

National Top Ten Entry: Hattie Ransom, Timberline Middle School (Alpine): “Andree de Jongh’s Stand: Rebellion and Resistance Against the Nazis During World War II,” 8th Place Junior Individual Website.

George Washington Leadership in History Prize:Tyler Pierce, Bethany Prettyman, Katie Snow, Mersedez Clifford, and Tessa Atwood, Carbon High School (Price): “The Secret Heroes of the American Revolution: The Culper Spy Ring’s Stand for Freedom,” Senior Group Documentary. Prize sponsored by Mount Vernon.

Fifty-nine Utah students qualified to compete at nationals (pictures) at the annual state competition, held in April. Their original historical research projects centered on the theme, “Taking a Stand in History.” During the rigorous week of competition, the students also toured the nation’s capitol and met with Senator Mike Lee and Congressman Rob Bishop. Utah’s National History Day program encourages students to delve into the past through historical research, critical thinking, and presentation. Students may choose a topic from local, national, or world history, ranging from politics and war to science, social history, and the arts. They then create museum-style exhibits, historical performances, original websites, documentary films, and research papers to showcase their work. Entries are judged in a series of competitions beginning at the local level and culminating in the national contest held each June.

“History Day is an exciting way to engage students and teachers in the study of historical issues, people and events,” said Wendy Rex-Atzet, state coordinator for the Utah History Day program. “This program truly makes history come to life for young people by offering the freedom to choose a meaningful topic, and then giving them the research and analytical tools they need to discover the past on their own.”

Utah History Day is the state’s official National History Day affiliate. Formerly called Utah History Fair, this program has operated continuously in Utah since 1980. The program was originally developed and housed at Utah State University. In 2014 it was transferred to the Utah Division of State History in Salt Lake City.

“Through History Day, students develop a deeper understanding of the past, along with better reading, writing, analytical, and presentation skills that translate to success in many other disciplines,” Division of State History Director Brad Westwood said.

Utah State Library Awarded Contract for Blind and Disabled Library Service

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah State Library will continue to provide blind and disabled library service to states west of the Mississippi River through a contract that is nearly $1 million and supports at least seven jobs in the state.

The agreement with the Library of Congress’ National Library Service for operation of the Multistate Center West is the largest service contract for the Utah State Library.

The contract’s renewal allows Utah blind residents to continue to have immediate access to materials not only in the Blind State Warehouse, but also available through the Multistate Center West. Currency Reader machines are also available to the blind in Utah through the Utah State Library.

“The Utah State Library is honored to be selected by the Library of Congress to continue to operate the Multistate Center West,” State Librarian Donna Jones Morris said. “The contract means that Utah continues to be a leader in blind and disabled library services.“

Housed in Utah State Library headquarters (250 N., 1950 W., Salt Lake City), the Multistate Center West is the National Library Service’s western distribution center for equipment and special format reading materials, including Braille and audio books. It also provides materials and machines nationwide through the Interlibrary Loan program.

The Utah State Library contracts with 19 states to provide Braille materials and full library service to Alaska and Wyoming. Library service for the blind and disabled is free for patrons who qualify to receive material.

Media Contact: Josh Loftin
Utah Department of Heritage & Arts
801-245-7205
jloftin@utah.gov

Applications Open for DesignArts Utah ‘17 Exhibit

Design Arts Utah logoSALT LAKE CITY — Utah designers from all fields are encouraged to apply for the annual DesignArts Utah exhibition.

The Utah Division of Arts & Museums’ Design Arts Program will host the 2017 exhibition Sept. 8 through Oct. 20 at the Rio Gallery in Salt Lake City. Applications can be uploaded here. Designers in any field are encouraged to submit their work. Realized, conceptual, or prototype designs are eligible. The deadline for applications is July 10, 2017.

DesignArts Utah celebrates the state’s great designers and provides a valuable platform for viewers to engage with the design community. Partners in this free public exhibition include Salt Lake Design Week and Craft Lake City.

Brooke Hodge, the director of the Palm Springs Art Museum Architecture and Design Center, formerly with the Cooper Hewitt, The Hammer and Los Angeles MOCA, will curate the exhibition. The designer selected as the Juror’s Award Winner will receive a $3,000 award. Two designers selected in the student category will each receive a $500 award.

In conjunction with Salt Lake Gallery Stroll and Salt Lake Design Week, a closing reception will take place Oct. 20th from 6-9 pm at the Rio Gallery. Admission for the public reception is free.

To learn more about Utah Division of Arts & Museums’ Design Arts program or to view past exhibition catalogs and images, visit visualarts.utah.gov. If you have any questions contact Mackenzie Morton (email or call 801.245.7270) or Jim Glenn (email or call 801.245.7271).

Media Contact:
Josh Loftin
Utah Department of Heritage & Arts
801-245-7205
jloftin@utah.gov

 

New Poet Laureate Celebrates Literary Voices Throughout Utah

Utah Governor Gary R. Herbert has named University of Utah English professor Paisley Rekdal as the state’s new Poet Laureate.

“The literary arts are an essential part of our state’s rich cultural heritage,” Herbert said. “Ms. Rekdal’s artistic accomplishments and teaching service make her ideally suited to continue the tradition of bringing poetry and literature to the people of Utah.”

During her four-year term, Rekdal will serve as the governor-appointed advocate for literature and the arts. She is also available to conduct readings and lead workshops for community groups, arts organizations, and educators. Continue reading

Public Art Proposals Requested for Southern Utah University Project

The Utah Public Art Program of the Division of Arts and Museums, in association with the Division of Facilities and Construction Management and Southern Utah University School of Business, has published a call for letters of interest and qualifications from artists or artist teams interested in creating public art for the new facility being built on the campus of SUU in Cedar City.

The School of Business Art Selection Committee is interested in working with an artist(s) to develop site specific work which is harmonious with the design of the building and contribute to an environment that inspires students to think creatively toward new heights. It is hoped this site specific work will encourage thought, exploration, and contemplation, while still being accessible in concept and intent.

The full description and how to apply is at www.publicart.utah.gov. The deadline for receipt of material from interested artists is 5 p.m. MST, June 9, 2017. Applications may be submitted online at www.callforentry.org.

The Public Art Program was created by the Utah State Legislature in 1985 with the passage of the Percent-for-Art-Act. This statute allows for 1 % of construction costs for new or remodeled State facilities to be added to the project for the commissioning or acquisition of art that is site specific to the facility and community. To date, over 230 works have been placed in State facilities statewide. For more information visit www.publicart.utah.gov or contact Jim Glenn at jglenn@utah.gov or 801-245-7271 or Mackenzie Morton at mmorton@utah.gov or 801-245-7270.

Rendering courtesy: VCBO Architecture