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 Understanding Leadership: China in the 20th Century 
A National History Day Summer Institute for History Teachers
July 20 - August 1, 2013

Summer Institute 2013

National History Day announces an exciting and unique summer institute for middle and high school history teachers. Twenty middle school/high school teachers will be selected to participate in a two-week program in China. Teachers will be immersed in lectures presented by leading historians, participate in scholarly discussions with historians, meet with Chinese history teachers and walk in the footsteps of history in Shanghai, Nanjing, Changsha, Xi'an and Beijing.

Application Process

The teachers will be selected by the National History Day committee based on the following criteria:   

  • Teacher’s resume including full name, work title and institution; the applicant's home and work addresses and phone numbers (home and cell); and a work and home e-mail address.  
  • An essay explaining the applicants’ interest in the institute, stating the applicants’ philosophy of teaching, including how students are engaged in historical research in the classroom now and confirming the applicants’ willingness to make the two required presentations and other school based assignments. The presentations can be school-based, state or national.
  • A letter of support from the applicant's supervisor that attests to employment status in 2013-2014 and agrees to the applicant's making two presentations at workshops or conferences.


  • The institute covers room and board (double occupancy) during the institute, field trips, books and materials. 
  • The institute also covers domestic flights within China (flights between Nanjing, Changsha, Xi'an, Beijing, etc.).

Participants will:

  • Pay for the transportation costs to and from China.
  • Any costs incurred for travel, e.g. passports, travel insurance...
Please Note

In preparation for the trip and while on site, participants commit to taking part in serious academic study, completeing preparatory readings, actively and respectfully taking part in academic discussions and maintaining an open mind as we encounter controversial topics throughout the study program.
  • The history under examination is often controversial, requiring some sensitivity while discussing certain issues;
  • Participants commit to following the lead of the organizers in determing the appropriate place and time to discuss certain issues;
  • At times, accommodations and food along the trip will be quite different than most Americans expect while traveling;
  • Overall, an open mind, willingness to take on intellectually challenging material, flexibility and commitment to active, positive engagement in a group setting are the attributes that are sought in interested applicants.

Because of the physicality of the institute all participants must be able to stand for 45 minutes and walk for at least two miles. In addition, the complexity of the institute’s logistics does not allow for families to accompany the selected participants.

Deadline for Applications:

  • Complete applications for the 2013 National History Day Summer Institute must be received no later than February 15, 2013. 

    Application Submission Instructions:
    Download the application from the link below to your computer, fill out the information, save it and attach the application with all other required criteria to Cathy Gorn,
  • Applicants selected for the 2013 institute will be notified by e-mail no later than March 6, 2013. Questions concerning the 2013 National History Day Summer Institute may be directed to Cathy Gorn, or Mark Johnson,

National Contest Information

June 15 - 19