USC Shoah Foundation launches new IWalk app

Wed, 04/10/2019 - 8:50am

After months of beta testing with educators around the globe, USC Shoah Foundation is launching the brand new IWalk app, which offers 29 IWalks in seven countries and eight languages.

Developed by USC Shoah Foundation and made possible by the generous support of the Philadelphia Holocaust Remembrance Foundation, the IWalk app unlocks a new window into our past. Visitors and students at authentic sites of history and memorials can discover curated IWalks – tours that connect specific locations of memory and memorialization with testimonies from survivors and witnesses of genocide, violence and mass atrocity.

 (Click here to download the new app for Apple devices; click here for Android devices.)

Carefully curated by USC Shoah Foundation’s team of educators and scholars, IWalks contextualize and humanize the history at sites of memory by using testimony, photographs and maps. The result is a unique multimedia experience that provides visitors a personalized learning experience at sites of memory around the world in multiple languages.

“We are thrilled to showcase the latest iteration of the IWalk app, whose new and exciting developments expand its functionality, improve its user interface and streamline the app experience,” said Jenna Leventhal, USC Shoah Foundation’s Deputy Director of Education.

The new version includes a refined layout and design, educator onboarding support and improved video playback.

Other new features include:

  • Additional language support
  • Ability to remove all downloads
  • Student/teacher profiles added for easy submission of student responses
  • Updated glossary

Student IWalks deepen learning by prompting students to respond to guided questions, which can be assessed by educators.

The IWalks in Europe connect viewers to the history of physical locations where significant events occurred during the Holocaust.

An IWalk in Poland located on the site of what was the Warsaw Ghetto gives viewers a sense of the daily struggle for dignity and survival for those inhabitants, guided by the testimony of survivors who experienced it.

Another in Romania takers viewers through a region -- called Șimleu Silvaniei – whose vibrant Jewish community was wiped out in World War II.

In Philadelphia, viewers are guided through the new Horwitz-Wasserman Holocaust Memorial Plaza.  A suite of IWalks explore thematic topics such as contemporary antisemitism, propaganda, and a general overview of the history of the Holocaust.

During one IWalk, viewers watch a clip of testimony from liberator and Philadelphia native Leon Bass. Bass reminds viewers of the dangers of antisemitism.

“The evil is still with us. It has not gone away. We have just to look at the news, on the television and in the papers. I’m talking about racism, antisemitism. I’m talking about bigotry and prejudice…and it’s up to us to deal with it. And we’ve got to fight it.”

Rob Kuznia