Prizes, Schools History Prize, Schools History Prize Winners

WHN Schools History Prize 2021 – Prizewinners

Tahaney Alghrani  School’s Liaison Officer 

This year we challenged the students to create a poster which illustrates one of two themes:

  • Extraordinary women working for today and tomorrow.
  • Heroines who have made an impact locally, nationally or internationally in the past or the present.

We had some truly amazing entries at both junior and senior level. It was very difficult for the Steering Committee to judge; we were so impressed with all of the wonderful and thoughtful posters! The winners of the competition and highly commended will see their design featured on future WHN merchandise.

Senior Category Winner

Natasha described the design of her poster:

“The poster highlights the impact three heroines have had on the LGBTQ+ rights movement globally, due to their involvement in the 1969 Stonewall riots. The crowd at the bottom signified how, although these women were important, it was also a collective movement. Because of these three women starting the riots, we have the modern LGBTQ+ rights movement (signified by the pride flags). The monochrome sign in the bottom left is an insightful reminder of humbler beginnings. On an international scale, if it wasn’t for these heroines, LGBTQ+ people wouldn’t be as recognised legally and socially. This poster was made us command more attention to women in history who have made such a positive impact on an international scale”.

The student explained why they should be considered extraordinary heroines:

“Stormé DeLaverie was a crossdressing lesbian when women wearing less than ‘three pieces of female attire’ in the 1960’s was illegal. Sylvia Rivera was a transgender activist who co-founded Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries, which was dedicated to protecting homeless LGBTQ+ youth on the streets of NY. Marsha P. Johnson’s timeless quote (“No pride… all of us.”) has become a mantra of power for those voiceless all around the globe. These powerful, queer, POC heroines have no doubt positively affected millions of lives both in the past and the present. Due to their part in starting the Stonewall riots, many anti-LGBTQ+ laws were made desuetude, and the world has become more progressive in accepting LGBTQ+ people”.

The Steering Committee were very impressed with the entry and we are sure that everyone will agree that this is a worthy winner!

Junior winner

The Steering Committee were extremely impressed by Heidi’s explanation for her eye-catching design:

“For my poster I decided to do a collage of layers using coloured card and I used a lot of gold to signify the amount of gold medals Ms Biles has won over her career. The idea of my poster is to show that Simone is the best in the world and is respected globally for what she has done for the sport”.

Heidi on her choice of extraordinary heroine:

“Simone Biles has become one of the greatest athletes in the world. She has single handedly changed the face of gymnastics forever. Through hard work and perseverance, she has amassed more medals than any other living athlete.”

Heidi’s poster was submitted prior to the Olympic Games this year and another medal for Simone!  The Steering Committee did enjoy looking at your entry Heidi – well done!

There were so many very popular entries this year amongst the Steering Committee so we felt that we would display highly commended posters from both Junior/Senior categories.  

Highly Commended

Ada Lovelace by Jacob Ghani

Jacob explained how his special design was linked to his extraordinary heroine:

“A stylised drawing on Ada Lovelace, the world’s first computer programmer. Using ProCreate on the iPad, I drew Ada and some mechanics to represent that she was the first computer programmer. I like how her machine could repeat series of instructions, called looping, which I use sometimes”.

Well-done Jacob! We hope that you enjoyed researching this fascinating area of women’s history.

Wilma Rudolph by Evie Evans,

Evie explained her extraordinary heroine choice

“It is important to celebrate women’s who have done amazing things as in the past women have not been recognised for their achievements. Often when women did the work or discovered new things, they were not given the credit for it. Wilma Rudolph is an inspiration because she had a difficult start in life and was told she would never walk without her leg brace. But her mother believed she would walk again, and she believed her mother. With lots of hard work she managed to not only walk without her brace, but she became the best runner in the world”.

Very inspirational, great message to believe in the power of dreams and human spirit! Well done Evie!

 Mamie Phipps Clark by Srinidhi Balaji & Devanshi Sahoo

 Srinidhi & Devanshi fantastic poster and research, their explanation for their choice:

“Our project is on Mamie Phipps Clark, the first African American women to earn a Ph.D in psychology. Her research was mainly on the effect of segregation on Black children. The results of her ‘Doll Test’ were used in “Brown V. Board of Education” case and Supreme Court outlawed school segregation. She also founded Northside Centre for Child Development for Black children.”

Well-done Srinidhi & Devanshi! We hope that you enjoyed researching this important area of history and the extraordinary contribution of Mamie Phipps Clark!

Artemisia Gentileschi by India Brooks

India’s entry was unique in its design and explained her choice of heroine:

“My project is about a lady called Artemisia Gentileschi and she was an artist in Italy. She was an artist in Italy. She got bullied and got told what to do by men and my project is saying STOP and to let women do what they want to do. I think this lady is very important because she has worked really hard to put a group together to spread the message of women’s rights”.

Well done India, we hope you enjoyed designing and researching Artemisia Gentileschi!

Nancy Wake by Aleeza Ahmed

Aleeza explained why she felt that Nancy Wake is an extraordinary heroine:

“When WWII broke out, New Zealander Nancy Wake was living in France where she joined the resistance to help fight against the Nazis. After escaping to England in 1943, she had the courage to parachute back into France to train resistance fighters and help pilots who had been shot down, ferrying them across the mountains of Spain with fake identity papers so they could get back to England safely. She cleverly outwitted the Gestapo and reached the top of their most wanted list. Even in the toughest of situations she maintained her composure. When the war ended, she was awarded medals by Britain, France, Australia and New Zealand. This was an important project for me as I feel that women, even today, are not well recognised for their contributions to society. Nancy Wake is a symbol of strength, courage and composure which makes her a role model for young girls”.

Aleeza described how she designed her poster:

“My poster is an acrylic painting of Nancy Wake exhibited on a 25cm by 28cm piece of canvas paper done out of my fascination with history. It includes many varied tones with an outline of sharpie and a coating of gold paint. The background consists of tone shades of blue which nicely contrasts the olive-green waist coat, a colour known as the traditional colour of peace. On the other hand, the gold details that ornament the edges can symbolise triumph, success, value, and elegance”.

Well done Aleeza! We thought that your artwork was great!  We hope that you enjoyed researching the life of Nancy Wake.

Nadezhda Durova – The Cavalry Maiden by Mark Velichko

Mark explained his choice of heroine when studying the Napoleonic wars:

“Recently I have studied the history of the Napoleonic wars and have found out that in Russian army there was a female hussar, Nadezhda Durova.  She displayed bravery and heroism and broke the stereotypes of the position of women in the society in that era. On my picture there are scenes of from both aspects of her life, for example, a ball and a battlefield. The mirror portrays the way she saw herself”.

Well done Mark! We thought that your artwork was great!  We hope that you enjoyed researching the life of Nadezhda Durova.

Rosa Parks by Erin Hernon

Well done! Erin’s explanation for her heroine:

“The poster combines the historic example of Rosa Parks as an iconic pioneer of equality with the contemporary movement Black Lives Matter. This helps to show progress while reminding us that we still have some way to go”.

Chanel Miller by Stephanie Omorogbe  

Well done Stephanie! Great heroine and poem, Stephanie explained why she chose Chanel Miller

“A sexual assault victim who became a survivor then turned thriver, who tells her story and journey. Even though her assault happened some years ago, her case reflects an issue that has been around for a long time, decades and probably centuries…A modern day woman stood up not only for herself but for many others”.

100 women who changed the world by Rowan Walledge.

Rowan explained her design which included 100 heroines:

“My project has 100 different women on it from all different periods and countries. My aim was to get as many women on there that people may not have heard about before because there are so many great women out there who don’t get mentioned. It took 48 hours over 24 days and I really enjoyed making it”.

Well done Rowan! We hope you enjoyed researching for your poster!

Emmeline Pankhurst by Ruby Mills

Well done Ruby! Great use of colour to present your heroine Emmeline Pankhurst

A gallery of the entries we received (images being added all the time – check back later for more!)