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Congratulations to Anthony Labib ‘26 who was named the Middle School Winner of the 2022 The Mount Vernon Prize for Excellence in Civics and History in Honor of Dr. Jennifer London. The prize is awarded to two projects each year recognizing outstanding middle and high school students who apply their understanding of Washington’s life to extend his legacy of public service and scholarship within their classrooms, schools, or communities.

Anthony used the current environment of the COVID pandemic as inspiration to study how people in the past handled similar situations. His paper lays out the challenge Washington faced through the threat of Smallpox while serving as Commander in Chief of the Continental Army. His paper was extremely well researched and provides great background information on the devastation of the disease and how/why it affected the British and American sides differently. He does a great job presenting the challenge Washington faced, the large decisions he made to confront those challenges, and the impact those decisions had on both the health of soldiers and the outcomes of the war.

Middle School History Department Chair and Ethics Coordinator CherylAnne Amendola says, “Anthony did superb work as a student of history and dug as deeply as he could at his level to prove his thesis and demonstrate Washington's continued relevance in the contemporary world. His research communicates to our community the importance of public health, even in the founding era, Washington's reliance on science as a strategy for containing disease and winning the war, and his concern for the health of the nation and the general welfare.”

Sadie Troy, Mount Vernon’s Manager of Student Learning explains why Anthony was chosen, “Anthony used the current world around him to study how people in the past handled similar situations. It is a great case study on Washington’s leadership actions during difficult times and highlights the impact that a person’s actions can have on other people.”

Anthony will receive a $1000 award and a family membership to Mount Vernon.

Mount Vernon is dedicated to supporting teachers and students about the life and legacies of George Washington, with educational resources designed to support further exploration into Washington’s world both in and out of the classroom. Allison Wickens, Mount Vernon’s Vice President for Education, is pleased to support this important recognition, “This award positions us to hear from students about why they think Washington’s biography is important and relevant to their lives today. Because of the generous support of Dr. London, we are thrilled Mount Vernon offers this prize and honors students of the year.”

Mount Vernon, the home of George Washington, is owned and maintained by the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association, the oldest national historic preservation organization in the United States. The estate is open to visitors and includes a Mansion, a museum and education center, gardens, tombs, a working farm, and a functioning distillery and gristmill. It also includes the Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington.