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Living History Lesson From Nobel Winner, Holocaust Survivor

Over 20 Glen Cove High School tenth- and eleventh-graders had the opportunity to hear noted writer, professor, and political activist Elie Wiesel speak about his book, entitled Night, during a lecture recently held at Adelphi University. Glen Cove High School Library Media Specialist Arlene Munson organized the visit.

The students had read Mr. Wiesel’s book beforehand, to learn about his experiences as a prisoner in the Auschwitz and Buchenwald concentration camps. Mr. Wiesel, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1986, wove his experiences of the Holocaust into recent world events, such as the genocides in Rwanda and Darfur, as well as the ongoing conflict between Israel and Palestine.

Tenth-grader Emily Natale took away an important message from this lecture, “Elie learned to forgive. It taught me how to think about forgiving people in my life, too,” observed Emily.

 “It was inspiring to see how someone survived such hard circumstances,” added tenth-grader Tori Durso. Her sister, Emily, agreed, “His strength was inspirational,” she said.

Student Esteban Maraboli, who came to the United States from Chile, could also appreciate Mr. Wiesel’s words. “I’m very happy to know that he motivated people to change their lives,” commented Esteban.

The Glen Cove students gained firsthand insight into the Holocaust and received a valuable lesson in character education and tolerance of the many different cultures and religions that make up the world.