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Friday, June 12, 2015
Twenty years ago, memories of the Holocaust were too painful for Liliane Weissberg’s parents to give their testimonies to USC Shoah Foundation’s Visual History Archive. But Weissberg herself has taken on the mantle of studying and remembering the Holocaust as a professor at the University of Pennsylvania and USC Shoah Foundation’s next Rutman Teaching Fellow.
Monday, June 15, 2015
Former indexer Alessandro Marazzi Sassoon may have left his job at the USC Shoah Foundation last year, but what he learned working with the Institute has had a lasting impact.
Wednesday, June 17, 2015
Emma Heintz and Natalia Podstawka had watched many testimony clips in search of the perfect one to use for their IWitness Video Challenge project. When they found Dina Gottliebova-Babbitt talking about a receiving a smile from a stranger, they knew it was the one.
Monday, October 5, 2015
Dan Morgan-Russell has always been very good at arguing for the importance of international action against genocide.As a member of his high school debate team in Denver, his most successful speeches were always the ones in which he spoke about human rights violations and the need for the international community to intervene. Naturally, as an undergraduate at the University of Southern California, he decided to major in international relations and wrote several papers about the Rwandan Genocide.
Wednesday, December 2, 2015
When Michael Russell joined the USC Shoah Foundation staff in 2008, it wasn’t the first time his family had crossed paths with Holocaust survivors.His dad, Sonny, worked with the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration after World War II, helping child Holocaust survivors get settled in England. Sonny even got to know Mayer Hersh, a well-known Holocaust survivor whose testimony is in the Visual History Archive.
Monday, August 31, 2015
The memorial service for Yevnige Salibian, one of the last remaining survivors of the 1915 Armenian Genocide, was held today in Mission HIlls, Calif. Salibian died August 29, 2015, at 101 years old.A force of nature well into her hundreds, Salibian gave testimony about her childhood experiences to USC Shoah Foundation in 2014.
Monday, November 2, 2015
We are sad to learn of the passing of Thomas Blatt, a Holocaust survivor who was one of the few people to survive an escape from the Sobibor death camp in 1943. He was 88.Born April 15, 1927, in Lublin, Poland, Blatt also served as a witness at the 2009 trial of the camp guard John Demjanjuk.
Thursday, December 17, 2015
Jerquila Slaughter’s students were inspired to make a real difference in their community after watching testimony in IWitness.After learning about IWitness at the Dallas Holocaust Museum Center for Education and Tolerance’s summer workshop for teachers, Slaughter began assigning IWitness activities to her students at Gilliam Collegiate Academy this semester.She used IWitness in her elective course that covers topics such as genocide and gentrification this semester and plans to also use IWitness in her Advanced Research course this spring.
Monday, October 12, 2015
The hero of Alex Teplish’s graphic novel Survivor: Aron’s Story isn’t a crime-fighter or science-fiction creature – it’s his grandfather, Holocaust survivor Aron Rabinovich.
Thursday, November 5, 2015
USC Shoah Foundation is sorry to learn of the passing of Aleksander Laks, the first Holocaust survivor to give his testimony to USC Shoah Foundation in Brazil and a special friend of the Institute. Laks passed away July 21 at age 88.Laks survived the Lodz Ghetto, Auschwitz and a death march as a teenager. He immigrated to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and became a leader of the survivor community there as president of the Sherit Hapleita (Holocaust survivors’ organization).
Friday, August 21, 2015
It wasn’t until she wrote her book A Guest at the Shooter’s Banquet, available now, that Rita Gabis learned the truth about her family’s complicated past.
Monday, April 20, 2015
Growing up, Addison Sandoval worked in his dad’s diesel repair shop in Compton, Calif., driving and delivering parts during the summers. It was there, encountering different people and places, that he learned to appreciate the values of humility, treating people with respect, and embracing people’s differences, he says.
Wednesday, April 22, 2015
When you use indexing terms to search through USC Shoah Foundation’s first 60 Armenian Genocide interviews in the Visual History Archive, or rely on the subtitles to understand the Armenian-language interviews, think of Hrag Yedalian.
Friday, September 4, 2015
When Tiffany Taylor, director of Teach for America – Detroit, first received an email inviting her to join the advisory board for USC Shoah Foundation’s IWitness Detroit program, she admits it was the first time she had heard of IWitness.But one line in the email caught her eye: “testimony-based education.” Taylor said she was intrigued by this idea and thought immediately about its potential for strengthening the educational movement in Detroit by uplifting student voices in a way that only firsthand experiences can.
Monday, January 12, 2015
On her first-ever trip outside North America, Barbara Fowler will join 24 other teachers from around the world to help commemorate the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz in Poland by learning new methods for teaching the Holocaust.
Tuesday, January 20, 2015
Marissa Roy says she didn’t quite know what to expect when she went to Rwanda on the 2013 Problems Without Passports trip – and she wants this year’s class to have the same experience.
Tuesday, August 25, 2015
One of the first steps in the UK’s National Holocaust Centre and Museum’s partnership with USC Shoah Foundation was for James Griffiths to participate in the IWitness Teaching Fellowship this summer.
Friday, January 16, 2015
The students in Lynne Ravas’ eighth grade English class at Lower Dauphin Middle School in Hummelstown, Penn., explore topics relating to the Holocaust not through research papers, but with videos in IWitness.
Monday, November 9, 2015
Nearly 20 years ago, talent manager and producer Steve Sauer was having a business lunch with Tony Thomopoulos, then-president of Amblin Television. Thomopoulos knew that Sauer’s parents were Holocaust survivors, so he asked Sauer if they had recorded their testimonies for Steven Spielberg’s Shoah Foundation yet.
Wednesday, March 18, 2015
Diane Wohl first visited USC Shoah Foundation when it was housed in trailers on the Universal Studios backlot nearly 20 years ago, and her support for its mission and programs has only continued to grow over the years.
Friday, December 11, 2015
With the partnership of Arnold Mittelman, students can now exercise their creativity in a brand new way when learning about the Holocaust in IWitness.Mittelman is a theater producer, director, educator and administrator who has created almost 300 productions of plays, musicals and special events. He helped found and lead not-for-profit theaters including the Coconut Grove Playhouse in Miami. He is founder, president and producing artistic director of the National Jewish Theater Foundation (NJTF), which celebrates creativity and preserves Jewish culture in the performing arts.
Thursday, October 1, 2015
By Eric LindbergUSC School of Social WorkAs an adoptee from Taiwan growing up in San Antonio, Texas, Priscilla Hefley struggled to find her identity.To avoid being seen as an outsider, she embraced the mainstream culture. It wasn’t until college that she began to reconnect with her roots and what it meant to be a Chinese American.“Adoptees can have a sense of not really being American and not really being Chinese,” she said. “It was a real struggle. Where exactly do I fit?”
Friday, October 23, 2015
During one of the most joyous times in her life, 13-year-old Mia Michaels decided to honor the survivors and victims of one of the darkest periods in history. Mia’s parents, Larry Michaels and Tamar Elkeles, have been USC Shoah Foundation donors for over 10 years, and her grandfather Gidon Elkeles fled Nazi Germany at age three while many other relatives were killed in the Holocaust. When it came time for her to decide on a project for her bat mitzvah, she wanted to connect to her family history and learn about how her past is part of her future, Tamar said.
Friday, December 4, 2015
Giving his testimony to USC Shoah Foundation in 1998 literally changed Hyman Schwartzblatt’s life.Schwartzblatt’s grandson, Jewish music producer and composer Eli Gerstner, said Schwartzblatt told his family almost nothing about his experiences during the Holocaust. And when he did happen to make an offhand comment about his survival, they never knew what to make of it. What was the truth?
Monday, January 19, 2015
Traveling to Poland for Auschwitz: The Past is Present will be a homecoming of sorts for Sabina Kobinski, who will return to her family’s homeland and the place where her own uncle was imprisoned during the Holocaust.
Wednesday, January 21, 2015
Bobbie Downs saw firsthand how genocide affects people when she taught Sudanese refugees in Cairo, and she will expand on this knowledge when she joins survivors, educators, students and thousands of others to attend the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz on January 27.
Monday, February 9, 2015
It is time for USC Shoah Foundation to welcome its next Austrian Holocaust Memorial Service Ambassador.
Wednesday, June 3, 2015
By Josh GrossbergUnwilling to acquiesce to the demands of a shameful ideology, a German Nazi rescues a group of Jews by putting them to work in a factory during World War II. He saves about 1,200 people, but by the end of the war, he despairs that he didn’t do enough. He returns to civilian life in anonymity, but is later recognized as a Righteous Among the Nations by the State of Israel.
Wednesday, August 19, 2015
By spending a year in Los Angeles as USC Shoah Foundation’s Austrian Holocaust Memorial Service intern, Florian Köppl is fulfilling a lifelong dream.Köppl is the 12th young man from Austria to work at USC Shoah Foundation as an alternative to his compulsory military service back home. The Austrian Holocaust Memorial Service, founded by Andreas Maislinger, places accepted applicants at Holocaust memorial institutions around the world, where they live and work for one year.
Tuesday, November 3, 2015
When it’s time for Kathleen Ralf’s class on Genocide and Human Rights to begin, her students log in from their homes all over the world. This semester, they were all able to take part in a common project through IWitness.

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