Institute News

Students Respond to Testimony for Siegelbaum Literary & Visual Arts Competition

Testimony clips about immigration will serve as the inspiration for students entering this year’s Siegelbaum Literary and Visual Arts Competition at the Holocaust Museum & Center for Tolerance and Education in New York.

The competition, now in its 21st year, is open to grades 6-12. Students are encouraged to submit works of poetry, prose or visual art. First, second and third place will be awarded for grades 6-8 and 9-12 in each category. Teachers of the first-place entries will receive $100 to spend on their classrooms.

This year, the theme of the competition is “The Power of the Immigrant Story.” USC Shoah Foundation provided six testimony clips from the Visual History Archive for students to watch for inspiration while working on their projects. In the clips, Holocaust survivors including Esther Clifford, Vera Gissing and Herbert Karliner talk about their experiences and struggles as immigrants.

Students may consider the following questions to help guide their artistic or written work:

What do immigrants bring to society?

How do immigrant quotas reflect our country’s position on refugees?

What difficulties do families face while deciding to emigrate or flee one’s homeland?

How do the testimonies of these Holocaust survivors move us to consider the potential consequences of closing borders to refugees and immigrants today?

Submissions are due to the Museum March 21, 2017. View contest guidelines here.

The Holocaust Museum & Center for Tolerance and Education is located at Rockland Community College in Suffern, New York. Over 200,000 students visit its museum exhibits and classroom space every year.