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The Power of Place: 2024 JCRC Educator European Summer Institute

June 17 - June 29

rose on barbed wire

The Power of Place

2024 JCRC Educator European Summer Institute
June 17 – 29, 2024
Visit Warsaw, Berlin and Prague

Applications due Feb. 25, 2024

“Space stands as a witness to what happened.”
– Yitskhok Rudashevski, diary excerpt, Salvaged Pages

$2,425.00 + international airfare per person
(based on double room occupancy for hotel stays)
+ mandatory travel insurance

$3,425.00 + international airfare per person
(based on single room occupancy for hotel stays)
+ mandatory travel insurance

Professional/Continuing Education credits for K-12 educators available through Minnesota State University, Mankato.
Each participant will be contacted by a trip leader to arrange airfare and must purchase their own travel insurance.

Join us as we travel to authentic, historical sites to better understand the events of the Holocaust, WWII, antisemitism, as well as Jewish life today. Research has shown that traveling to authentic sites is an effective tool in moving people from empathy to action. In addition to gaining personal insight and knowledge, your students and community will benefit as you bring the lessons and experience home.  


June 17 (overnight flight from U.S. to Warsaw) 
June 18 – 28 (on the ground in Europe) 
June 29 (flight home from Prague to U.S.)  

Warsaw, Poland: 4 nights (Sofitel Warsaw Victoria)
Berlin, Germany: 4 nights (Westin Grand Berlin)
Prague, Czech Republic: 3 nights (Hotel Rott Prague)
Breakfast included daily at each hotel.  

We will have walking tours in each city with professional, local guides. Charter busses will transfer us to additional sites and will also be our transportation between countries.


Warsaw Ghetto remnants, Treblinka Museum (former killing center in Nazi-occupied Poland), Jewish Historical Institute – Emanuel Ringelblum Archive, Żabiński villa (original villa from “The Zoo Keeper’s Wife”), POLIN Museum of Jewish History, Lodz  

YAHAD-IN UNUM (“Holocaust by Bullets” – Father Patrick Desbois) – Spend one full day in the field with Yahad-In Unum staff members as we trace the footsteps of Jews who lived in Polish communities that were destroyed by the Nazis. Through archival research and in-field investigations, which include interviews with non-Jewish eyewitnesses to the Nazi crimes, they seek to identify each execution site and mass grave – remembering that each person has a name and a story and deserves to be remembered and memorialized. To this day, the organization has interviewed 7,925 non-Jewish eyewitnesses across Eastern Europe, and it has identified 3,293 mass graves. The one day in the field will give us an opportunity to investigate the fate of  two specific Jewish communities: to visit the sites of their life and death, to analyze the archival sources and to listen to eyewitness testimonies.

YIU – Father Patrick Desbois – His story


Site of Nazi Book Burning, Checkpoint Charlie, Reichstag, Topography of Terror, Wannsee House (where Nazi leaders met to discuss “The Final Solution”), Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp Memorial Site, Kindertransport Memorial, Berlin Jewish Museum


Jewish Quarter, Terezin Memorial and Ghetto Museum – spend a full day here with Education staff and guides, Lidice, and end our European Summer Institute with a 2-hour private river cruise along the Vltava River.  

Prerequisite includes attending three intro sessions via zoom beginning in 2024. Post requisite asks participants to design a project and/or program that furthers Holocaust awareness in their own community and communicate with the JCRC through photos, summaries, and reflections.

Meet your trip leaders:

Laura Zelle
Director of Holocaust Education, Jewish Community Relations Council of MN and the Dakotas (JCRC)

Laura is director of Tolerance MN and Holocaust Education at JCRC where she has been on staff since 2005. Laura oversees programming including writing grants and delivering curriculum, educator workshops, speakers, and film showings. She has been responsible for the vision and creation of numerous educational resources. Tolerance Minnesota was awarded the 2018 “Presidents’ Community Partner Award” from Normandale Community College.


Kristin Thompson  
Founding Director,  Humanus Network, Holocaust and Human Rights Education Consulting

Kristin is currently the founding director of Humanus NetworkPreviously, she was a classroom history teacher (19-yrs) in MN and Education Program Coordinator at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. (5 1/2 yrs) where her primary task was training teachers in Holocaust education.


Kyle Ward  
Director of Social Studies Education at Minnesota State University, Mankato

Kyle Ward is the Director of Social Studies Education at Minnesota State University, Mankato.  Along with working with future Social Studies teachers, he also teaches classes on US History and World War II and the Holocaust.  He began his career as a middle/high school Social Studies teacher before working at the university level.  He earned his PhD from Indiana State University and has written on, and researched topics related to World War II and historiography/historical thinking.  


Susie Greenberg
Associate Director of Holocaust Education

Susie Greenberg, Associate Director of Holocaust Education, has spent the last 15 years working at the JCRC, devoting much of her time planning, facilitating, and implementing programming around Holocaust education and remembrance. Susie focuses on the Twin Cities community and beyond  via an active speakers’ bureau, community trainings, charter trips to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, the annual Yom HaShoah Commemoration (Holocaust Remembrance Day), and more. Additionally, she co-curated Transfer of Memory, a traveling photography exhibit about Minnesota Holocaust survivors, and coordinated and supervised the exhibition, Kindertransport – Rescuing Children on the Brink of War in Minneapolis and curated the accompanying local component, The Story is Here


For more info contact:  Laura@minndakjcrc.org


June 17
June 29
Event Category:

Application for Power of Place 2024