New Holocaust Field School Study Project at the University of Victoria

The Department of Germanic and Slavic Studies at the University of Victoria will be offering a new program in Central Europe beginning in May 2011 called the I-Witness Holocaust Field School Project. This field school is designed to explore ways in which the Holocaust has become “memorialized” in Central Europe by focusing on memorial sites, museums, and monuments of the Holocaust and acquiring a deeper understanding of antisemitism, racism, religious intolerance, homophobia and the stigmatization of the mentally and physically disabled communities. The program will run from May 2-28, with the first week of classes taking place at UVic and the following three weeks in Europe. Participants will travel to Berlin (Germany), Cracow, (Poland), and Vienna (Austria).

This 3-unit advanced undergraduate course will combine classroom study, an intensive field school experience, and pre- and post-reflections and analysis on the course content. The field school will appeal to students across disciplines and is designed to promote inter-cultural learning by allowing participants to engage with the people and culture of their surroundings via guest lectures, class discussions, and interactions with European students. Upon return, participants will share their experiences through formal presentations and discussions. The field school course is taught by Dr. Helga Thorson, Associate Professor in the Department of Germanic and Slavic Studies at UVic. Both Dr. Thorson and the Associate Program Director, Michael Gans, will accompany participants to Europe for the program. The cost of the program is $2750. Participants will also need to pay for tuition, roundtrip airfare from Victoria to Berlin, travel insurance, and meals (except breakfast). A limited number of scholarships and bursaries are available.

The application deadline is November 1, 2010. For more information, please contact the Associate Program Director, Michael Gans at 250-721-7318 or via email ( This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) or visit the program website [www.uvic.ca/geru/iwitness]. Since this is the first year of the program, we are hoping to increase the amount of scholarships and bursaries available to program participants. If you are interested in helping provide students with a life-changing educational experience, we ask that you consider donating to the field school project. Please contact the UVic Humanities Development Officer, Karen Whyte, at 250-853-3893 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it if you would like to support this new initiative.