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NSU Hosting Holocaust Reflection Contest Winners to be Honored
- Consuls General from Israel and Germany are Scheduled to Attend
Published Monday, February 24, 2020


FORT LAUDERDALE/DAVIE, Fla. – “Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” – George Santayana 

Nothing could ring truer, especially when it comes to the Holocaust. A recent study showed nearly half of Americans did not know how many people perished in the Holocaust during World War II. Every year that passes is another year where this genocide fades from the general consciousness.

That’s why the Holocaust Reflection Contest is so important – it gets today’s generation involved in learning about, remembering and honoring the 6 million Jews and the millions of others who died.

“Nearly every day you read or hear a news report of an antisemitic act of violence somewhere in the world,” said Craig Weiner, who with his wife Barbara, co-founded the Holocaust Learning and Education Fund and also sponsor the Reflection Contest. “Education is the key, and that’s why Barbara and I are so passionate about ensuring today’s students remember and learn from the past so they can make for a better future for themselves and for society.”

The sixth annual event is scheduled for 10 am – noon Sunday, March 15th at Nova Southeastern University’s Alvin Sherman Library, 3301 College Ave.

This year will see the largest group of survivors – 10 – who will be on hand to share their experiences and meet with and hear the lessons learned by the winning students. In addition, Dr. George L. Hanbury, NSU president and CEO, will speak with the winning students and their parents, teachers and principals as well as NSU and community leaders.

This year, two special guests will attend and speak during the event – Ambassador Jonathan PeledConsul General of The State of Israel and Dr. Andreas SiegelConsul General of the Federal Republic of Germany.

“We’re honored that both Consuls General were able to find the time in their busy schedules to attend this year’s event in honor of these outstanding students and teachers ,” Weiner said.

Students will exhibit their award-winning essays, poetry, artwork and films created after studying the stories of Holocaust survivors. The winners were selected from more than 1,500 entries from across Florida. First-place winners in each category will be awarded $1,000, and their respective teachers and schools will receive $500 each. Second-place winners in each category will receive $250.

The winners’ work will be on display at the event and posted on the Holocaust Reflection Contest website. They include:


High School


1st Place: “Through Eva’s Eyes”
Student: Nicole Ashley
School: Cypress Bay High School – Weston

2nd Place: “Remembering the Past”
Student: Karyssa Pancake
School: Osceola County School of the Arts – Kissimmee


1st Place: “One Voice”
Student: Isabella Gallese
School: Jensen Beach High School – Martin County

2nd Place: “Tell the World How We Lived and How We Died…”
Student: Sofia De La Torre
School: Florida Christian School – Miami


1st Place: “Lessons From My Grandmother”
Student: Jonathan Tamen
School: Miami Beach Senior High School

2nd Place: “Echoes of the Holocaust”
Student: Victor San Martin
School: Terra Environmental Research Institute – Miami


Middle School


1st Place: “Holocaust Remembrance Essay”
Student: Reagan Lowe
School: NSU University School – Davie

2nd Place: “Who Are You?”
Student: Emma Stewart
School: Community Leadership Academy – Tallahassee


1st Place: “Resilience”
Student: Camila Moreno
School: Walter C. Young – Pembroke Pines

2nd Place: “Burning”
Student: Sohana Raisa
School: Sanford Middle School – Sanford


1st Place: “Feeling the Holocaust with Regina Lewin”
Student: Eva Gottesfeld
School: Donna Klein Jewish Academy – Boca Raton

2nd Place: “A Hidden Child”
Student: Grace Larson
School: Mandarin Middle School – Jacksonville

The Holocaust Reflection Contest began in 2014 at the bequest of the Holocaust Learning and Education Fund, Inc. (HLEF) co-founders Craig and Barbara Weiner. The couple established HLEF in 2013 to encourage the expansion of Holocaust education in the United States. The organization’s goal is to teach America’s students, through initiatives like the Holocaust Reflection Contest, how intolerance of others can lead to the destruction of our social fabric, while patience, compassion and understanding of others will always result in a safer and better world.  By learning from the past, we enrich the future.

The Craig and Barbara Weiner Holocaust Reflection and Resource Center provides NSU students and the community with a place to learn about and contemplate the atrocities that resulted from intolerance and hate. The Center – located on the second floor of NSU’s Alvin Sherman Library – provides access to thousands of Holocaust survivor testimonies; a Holocaust encyclopedia; archival images, more than 200 original artifacts, maps, and films; and links to Holocaust research museums and memorials around the world.


About Nova Southeastern University (NSU): At NSU, students don’t just get an education, they get the competitive edge they need for real careers, real contributions and real life. A dynamic, private research university, NSU is providing high-quality educational and research programs at the undergraduate, graduate, and professional degree levels. Established in 1964, the university includes 16 colleges, the 215,000-square-foot Center for Collaborative Research, a private JK-12 grade school, the Mailman Segal Center (early childhood education) with specialists in Autism, the world-class NSU Art Museum Fort Lauderdale, and the Alvin Sherman Library, Research and Information Technology Center, one of Florida’s largest public libraries. NSU students learn at our campuses in Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Jacksonville, Miami, Miramar, Orlando, Palm Beach, and Tampa, Florida, as well as San Juan, Puerto Rico, and online globally. Classified as having “high research activity” by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, NSU is one of only 50 universities nationwide to also be awarded Carnegie’s Community Engagement Classification, and is also the largest private institution in the United States that meets the U.S. Department of Education’s criteria as a Hispanic-serving Institution. Please visit www.nova.edu for more information.

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