Midwest students receive top awards at USDs 44th annual Student History Conference

VERMILLION, S.D. -- Four students from three Midwest institutions won top honors at the 44th annual Student History Conference at The University of South Dakota.

Donovan Day, a student at Buena Vista University, received the prize for best paper in the history of war and diplomacy with “Jefferson’s Reformation of the Army” while Amy C. Heiderscheidt of Southwest Minnesota State University won first place for best paper in regional history with “The Spanish Influenza and Southwest Minnesota.” A pair of Creighton University students, Jillian Liesemeyer and Michelle Bae, also received top honors at the conference, which was April 23 at the Muenster University Center on the USD campus. Liesemeyer won the prize for best paper in the history of culture with “Greasy Grinds and Quasi-Robots: Rhetorics of Exclusion Against Jewish and Asian Students in American Universities,” while Bae won top honors for her paper in women’s history, “Comfort Women: Victims of Racism and Sexism.”

The conference, sponsored by the USD Department of History and the Zeta Mu Chapter of Phi Alpha Theta – the national honor society in history, featured 46 graduate and undergraduate students from 12 colleges and universities throughout the region. Students presented or commented on papers in local, American, European and world history. Winning authors earned certificates and book awards.