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State Finals

Join us for the largest Michigan History Day event of the year—the state finals competition. 

Registration for the State Finals will open on Tuesday, March 1, 2022.

Project Materials are due by 5 p.m. on Thursday, April 7.

The Awards Ceremony will be at 11 a.m. on Saturday, April 30. More details will be available soon.

I learned how significant history truly is. It is not just words in a textbook to me anymore.

- MHD Student


Who may participate at the State Final event?

The top three entries in each category per age division at each district or regional event are selected as State Finalists and invited to participate in the State Finals.

Deadlines and Fees

  • Online registration must be completed on or before 5 p.m. on Thursday, March 31, 2022. All project materials are due by 5 p.m. on Thursday, April 7, 2022. Your school being on Spring Break during the registration or project submission deadline does not excuse you from completing the tasks on time.
  • You will not be able to register until your district coordinator sends the results of your district contest to Michigan History Day. Students and teachers will receive an e-mail when they can register for the contest. Students cannot register for the State Finals until their teachers/sponsors/coaches register in the system.
  • All members of a group entry must complete their own registration forms and pay the registration fee. ALL GROUP MEMBERS MUST REGISTER!
  • The registration fee for the state event is $35 per student. You may pay using a credit card through the online registration system or you may send a check or money order payable to the Historical Society of Michigan. Please make sure the student’s first and last name are on the check.
  • Teachers can create an invoice for schools or districts paying for student registration. Please e-mail or call the Historical Society of Michigan at (517) 324-1828 if you have trouble creating an invoice. A video of how to create invoices is available here.
  • No refunds will be granted after Friday, April 8, 2022.

Special Awards

Special awards are a great way to recognize projects that focus on a specific topic or research tool. Winners of special awards receive a monetary prize courtesy of the generous award sponsors. 

Students can nominate their projects for up to three special awards. Judges will only consider projects that are nominated during the registration process through the online registration system. Nominations must be completed by 5 p.m. on Thursday, April 7, 2022. Students must include a brief explanation (250 words or less) of why their project should be selected for a special award.

  • Best Use of Economic History or Impact • The Huntington Foundation
  • The Best Entry in Michigan History • Sponsored by Meijer
  • Best Entry in Naval or Maritime History • Sponsored by the Continental Commandery of the Naval Order of the United States
  • The Elly Peterson Award for Michigan Women’s History • Sponsored  by the Michigan Women Forward
  • The Sam Breck Award for Best Entry in Railroad History • Sponsored by the Michigan Railroad History Conference
  • The Best Entry in Use of Newspapers • Sponsored by the Clarke Historical Library, Central Michigan University
  • James Campbell Award for Best Use of Oral History • Michigan Oral History Association
  • The Best Entry in Use of Primary Sources • Michigan Archival Association
  • The Best Entry in Use of Family History • Sponsored by the Michigan Genealogical Council
  • The Best Entry in African-American History • Sponsored by Merze Tate Travel Writers

Special Awards Descriptions and Details

How do I submit my materials for the contest?

Review the Rules
Please review the rules for the competition and your category in the National History Day Contest Rule Book



Uploading Process
Please see the Contest Guide for details about submitting your project. Students will upload a single PDF with their title page, process paper, and annotated bibliography and a link to their documentary to the registration system. The Contest Guide for the State Finals is available at


Uploading Process 
Please see the Contest Guide for details about submitting your project. Students will upload a single PDF with their title page, process paper, annotated bibliography, and exhibit to the registration system. Students will submit photos of their exhibit as a preview for judges. Exhibit students can make changes to their project in the weeks leading up to the contest but should be prepared to explain those changes to the judges. The Contest Guide for the State Finals is available at


The Uploading Process 
Students will NOT send in hard-copies of their papers. Please see the Contest Guide for details about submitting your project. Students will upload a single PDF with their title page, process paper, paper, and annotated bibliography to the registration system. The Contest Guide for the State Finals is available at



The Uploading Process
Please see the Contest Guide for details about submitting your project. Students will submit their written documents (title page, process paper, and annotated bibliography) before the State Finals contest whether it is in-person or virtual. If the State Finals are a virtual contest, you will be able to submit a video of your performance. Please read the Performance Video Submission Guidelines for suggestions and instructions. Contact your district coordinator for instructions about your district contest. You can find contact information for coordinators on the Contests page. The Contest Guide for the State Finals is available at


Submission Process 
Please see the Contest Guide for details about submitting your project. Students will share the link to their website in the registration system. The process paper and annotated bibliography will be embedded in their website. The Contest Guide for the State Finals is available at

Is attendance required to compete?

Attendance is required for an in person contest. All students are required to complete registration, provide payment, and submit project materials by the deadline to participate in the contest. Only one member of a group project must attend the contest to represent the project, but ALL students of a group must register for the contest.

Are you allowed to improve your project?

Absolutely! Students are allowed and encouraged to improve their projects between MHD competitions. Successful students use the feedback from judges at district events to make changes to their project before the State Finals.

How and when will students receive their judge evaluation forms?

After the event, judge evaluation forms will be available for students and teachers through the Zfairs registration system. Judges’ comments provide constructive feedback on how students can improve their work in the future and help them understand why their project received its rating. Feel free to contact staff with questions, however, please understand that all judges’ decisions are final.

Award Ceremony

Details will be available in the weeks before the ceremony. The ceremony will be on Saturday, April 30, 2022.

National Finalist Meeting

National Finalists and Alternates will be contacted about a meeting via Zoom the week following the Awards Ceremony.

College, University, & Organization Information Tables

We thank the following Colleges, Universities, and Organizations for their support of Michigan History Day. As part of the 2022 State Finals, they will provide information that students can explore in a variety of ways, including the possibility of one-on-one virtual visits with schools, as they consider where they might attend after high school. Click on the school to visit their website. Click on the video link to learn more about the college or university.

Calvin University (Video)
Central Michigan University (Video)
Delta College (Video)
Eastern Michigan University (Video)
Michigan State University 
Michigan Technological University (Video)
Northern Michigan University (Video)
Oakland University (Video)
Saginaw Valley State University (Video)
University of Detroit Mercy (Video)
University of Michigan (Virtual Resources) (Information Sessions) (Contact Information)
University of Michigan-Flint
Wayne State University (Video)
Western Michigan University (Video)

A girl puts together her exhibit
Registration Table