Duluth High School Students Take Title In State History Contest

By KBJR News 1

May 4, 2011 Updated May 4, 2011 at 2:46 PM CDT

Duluth, MN (Northland's NewsCenter)

High school freshmen Bill Menor and Adam Kneepkens spent last weekend setting up this cardboard display and standing patiently by it.
The display was for Minnesota's History Day Competition in the Twin Cities and the boys say the work was more fun than it sounds.

"It's extra long and they drag it out as much as possible which is extremely painful at times but in the end, it makes it more fun and enjoyable and suspenseful to wait for the results."

When the results were in, Menor and Kneepkens had won the senior group competition.
The history project covered the Bretton Wood Conference of 1944.

"They went to establish a new world monetary order to stabilize currency and help the world economy."

The conference led to the start of the International Monetary Fund.
The young men who made the display are life long friends and last year, won several history contests as middle schoolers.
This year, Menor goes to East High School and Kneepkens goes to Marshall so getting their research done wasn't as easy.
The result was another medal winner even though the topic of economic history may seem dry to many of us.

"If you talk to Billy and Adam, their topic would be anything but dry and you want students to go into those areas that they have a passion for that and can make that come alive."

The boys' passion for history came alive due to mentoring from Cass Lake social studies teacher Sue DeNio.
They credit her with their success and at least one of the students wants to follow her footsteps along his own career path.

"It's so fun to watch and listen to teachers help us and have everybody give their opinions and I think it is cool to have that and I think teaching would be really fun."

Billy says he will become a history teacher, of course.
Adam still wants to become a cardiologist which was the subject of last year's history project.
In Duluth, Dave Anderson, the Northland's News Center.

Next stop for Adam and Billy will be the national history competition in June.
They came in second there last year.
This year, it will take twenty seven hundred dollars to go.
Donations to defray costs can be sent to the Minnesota Historical Society.