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Reflect on the Lessons of Holocaust Survivors

The powerful stories of Holocaust survivors provide wisdom and inspiration. The annual Holocaust Reflection Contest enables middle and high school students across the state of Florida to study the testimonies of Holocaust survivors in a creative way.

Find a survivor story that inspires you, and present your reflection in the form of:

  • an original essay or poem
  • a digital video or presentation
  • a visual art piece

2021 Winners

HIGH SCHOOL

Essay/Poem

1st Place | “That Suitcase”
By Ava Rosenblum
NSU’s University School

2nd Place | “The Everlasting Violinist”
By Abigail Scimeca
Spanish River Community High School

 

Art

1st Place | “Only Survivor”
By Sophie Araque-Liu
Martin County High School

2nd Place | “We Became the Target”
By Yair Sabag
David Posnack Jewish Day School

 

Digital Story Telling

1st Place | “Helen Borenstein's Saviors”
By Elizabeth Patrick
Osceola County School for the Arts

2nd Place | “A Heroic Act in the Shadows”
By Rida Yousuf
Charles W Flanagan High School

 

MIDDLE SCHOOL

Essay/Poem

1st Place | “The Tale Long Forgotten”
By Ariel Camhi
David Posnack Jewish Day School

2nd Place | “When Will You Know?”
By Mary Zephir
Little Flower Catholic

Art

1st Place | “Peak of Hope”
By Ava Biltswitch
Watson B. Duncan 

2nd Place | “The Reflection”
By Carolina Flores
Florida Christian School

 

Digital Story Telling

1st Place | “Dr. Edith Eva Eger: Loss, Healing, and Choice”
By Mia Gordon
The Greene School

2nd Place | “Examining the Heroes Without Capes”
By Drew Bank
Falcon Cove Middle School

Prizes

If your project wins, your teacher wins too! Each winning student receives:

  • 1st Place $1000
  • 2nd Place $250
  • an invitation to attend an awards ceremony on the NSU campus in Fort Lauderdale*
  • private tour of the Craig and Barbara Weiner Holocaust Reflection Resource Center*

Every student who enters the contest receives a digital Certificate of Participation.

* Due to COVID-19 precautions, we may change the in-person activities to a virtual award ceremony.

How to Participate

  1. Begin by reviewing Holocaust survivor testimonies, and find one that speaks to you.
  2. Reflect on the lessons you can learn about perseverance, compassion, kindness, and the strength of the human spirit in helping those in need, rather than the destructiveness of hate and prejudice. How can these lessons influence your life in today’s world? Your teacher can help you explore these topics and your thoughts about them.
  3. Create an original essay, poem, digital video or presentation, or visual art piece that clearly expresses what you learned about yourself and modern society by studying this survivor's story.
  4. Use the Student Checklist to ensure you're on track to successfully submit your project.
  5. To enter the contest, complete the online application and upload your project by the deadline.

 

What Do Student Participants Learn?

"While doing this project, I learned that you have to forgive people while not forgetting what happened to you in order to live in a peaceful world. It is important to think that there may be a light at the end of the tunnel. By thinking like this, it can encourage a person to get through the difficult times in their life."
2019 winner from Pembroke Pines Charter West Middle School

 

"I realize no matter how good or bad I have it, I need to wake up each day thankful for my life because someone somewhere else is desperately fighting for theirs." 
—2018 winner from The North Broward Preparatory Schools

 

"I learned to always be kind to others no matter what. And above all, you must not be afraid to use your voice to stand up against violence and prejudice."
—2018 winner from Barbara Goleman Senior High School

 

"An ordinary person can become extraordinary if they do the right thing. It has inspired me to be active in social justice to help illegal immigrants in my community."
—2018 winner from Nautilus Middle School

Contact Us

Please read the Contest Details and Frequently Asked Questions pages to see if we address your questions. Send questions to holocaustessay@nova.edu.

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