Inspired by art: Students use creativity to learn from the Holocaust

Inspired by art: Students use creativity to learn from the Holocaust

This year’s Jacob Friedman Holocaust Writing, Art, and Digital Media Contest, sponsored by the Washington State Holocaust Education Resource Center, received 700 entries from students across the state. Here are excerpts and artwork from several of the winners:

Digital Media

1st Place: Marina LaBossier, Grade 10, Eastside Catholic High School, Sammamish. “Little Red Shoes.” Watch the video online at


1st Place, 5th/6th Grade Writing Category
Mena Bova, Grade 6, Lake Washington Girls Middle School, Seattle
“These people, with their amazing stories of bravery inspire me. What I can do is be the person who speaks up when someone is pushed down, the person who takes a stand
against injustice. I can be the person who makes sure everyone has a say. I can be the person who spreads good into the world. I can be the person who brings hope, resistance, and change into this world.”

1st Place, 7th/8th Grade Writing Category
Attiya Khan, Grade 8, Meridian Middle School, Kent
“I have learned. I have learned that such injustice, regardless of the circumstances,
is inexcusable. I have learned that we all have a choice to prevent and stop such crimes,
and a duty to be affected by such crimes, whether it is I or a fourteen-year-old girl in middle school or eighty years from now. The events that have taken place are to inspire and break the hearts of this generation and many to come.”

1st Place, 9th-12th Grade Writing Category
Tulasa Ghimirey, Grade 12, Foster High School, Tukwila
“Since my family tragedy, it has been really hard to relate to anyone else’s sorrow
or experience. Reading ‘Night’ by Elie Wiesel has helped me understand a little bit more about the sacrifices and
challenges that all refugees face. His book reminds me of the power of resilience…. I wonder how my mom would react if she was still here watching me now.
I wonder how his mother would react if she could see what her son had become. Both our mothers died in anguish and in unfamiliar circumstances and maybe both mothers would be proud to see how their sacrifice has strengthened their children and given them
motivation to become the best and be an inspiration to other people in anguish.”

2nd Place, 9th — 12th Grade Writing
Category Jonathan Tan, Grade 10,
Jackson High School, Mill Creek
“The mentally disabled throughout history have proven their worth in
society over time by showing others that we can carry out tasks by ourselves
without the need of others. At the age of 13, my parents told me I was diagnosed with autism…. The characters in the book ‘Night’ and the story
of Helen Lebel have inspired me greatly to stay strong and firm during difficulties.”

Art Winners


1st Place: Jessica Kim, Grade 10, Bellevue High School, Bellevue.


1st place: 5th/6th grade: Rylee Grant, Grade 6, Cedar Park Christian School, Bothell.


1st place: 7th/8th grade: Ethan Hunter, Grade 7, St. George’s School, Spokane.