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Contest Details

Find Your Inspiration

Soon after their liberation from the Auschwitz and Buchenwald concentration camps, Holocaust survivors Viktor Frankl, Elie Wiesel, and Thomas Buergenthal published Man's Search for Meaning, Night, and A Lucky Child respectively. Their books analyze their and other prisoners' encounters in concentration camps, and, most importantly, they provide perspectives from which we can all learn.

The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Yad Vashem, the USC Shoah Foundation, and numerous other online resources offer a large selection of survivor testimonials and documented history. These stories offer unique insight on the impact of our daily choices and why we must avoid intolerance, hatred, racism, and bigotry as individuals and as a society.

How to Participate

The Submission Form will be available online December 2, 2019-January 20, 2020. Students are required to submit their entries using our online application. Parent Release Forms are also required for each student. For more information, please read the Frequently Asked Questions page.

This contest is open to all middle and high school students in the State of Florida commencing with the 2019-2020 school year.

  1. Begin by watching or reading Holocaust survivors testimonials.
  2. Select a testimonial or other historical reference (e.g., a family member's story of surviving the Holocaust) that inspires you. This will serve as your primary resource for understanding, analysis, and evaluation of the Holocaust and how the lessons from this period have an impact on your thinking and your future. (Please make note of the name of the Holocaust survivor and, if the testimonial is found online, bookmark the website. You will be required to include this information on the submission form.)
  3. Reflect on this piece of history, its meaning to you, and how it may impact your future. Why is this piece meaningful to you? How could you adapt it and take its meaning into your future? Submit your answers to these questions (and other related reflections you may have) in the form of an essay, a poem, a short film, or a visual art piece.
  4. To enter the contest, each student must have submitted the online application by January 20, 2020.
  5. To complete the entry, each student's parent/guardian must then submit the online Release Form by January 23, 2020 (11:59 p.m.). A link to the Release Form will be emailed to the parent/guardian after the student has entered the contest.

Submission Criteria

Each student may enter a maximum of one submission per category (i.e., one essay, one visual art piece, and one film). Group projects will not be accepted; only one student per submission.

Your name, school, and email address should not appear within the content of your submission.


  • An essay or a poem of no more than 500 words
  • Double-spaced
  • Font 12 pt.
  • Accepted file formats: .doc, .docx, .pdf

Visual Art

  • A two-dimensional image of any variety (a digitally created image, digital photograph, or a photograph of an original art piece)
  • Accepted file formats: .jpeg, .bmp


  • Running time not to exceed five minutes
  • Credits should be prepared but not saved as part of the submitted file
  • Accepted file formats: .mp4, .mpeg, .mov

Please note: Do not use symbols or blank spaces in the file names.


The winning students and their families are invited to a weekend of activities which include dinner, a private tour of the Craig and Barbara Weiner Holocaust Reflection Resource Center and dinner, as well as an awards ceremony and reception, on the Fort Lauderdale/Davie campus of Nova Southeastern University in March 2020. Teachers and principals are invited to the awards ceremony and reception. All students who enter the contest will receive a digital Certificate of Participation.

1st Place in Each of the 3 Categories (6 winners will be selected: 3 in middle school, 3 in high school)

  • $1,000 to be awarded to each winning student
  • $500 to be awarded to each winning student’s teacher
  • $500 to be awarded to each winning student’s school

 2nd Place in Each of the 3 Categories (6 winners will be selected: 3 in middle school, 3 in high school)

  • $250 to be awarded to each winning student

* Based on the discretion of the Contest Planning and Steering Committee, the number of prizes may be altered due to the quantity and quality of the entries.

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