Bringing Human Rights into the Classroom through Exploration of the Holocaust and Local Histories of Racial Injustice

Date: August 5-9, 2024
Location: Northern Virginia/Washington, D.C.

Photo: The Blue Ridge Parkway, Virginia

Educators interested in increasing their capacity to engage students in exploring human rights in their classrooms are invited to apply to this seminar, sponsored by TOLI and supported by partner organizations. Participants will explore the complexities of the Holocaust and the history of racial injustice, considering connections  between American Jim Crow laws and Nazi Germany’s Nuremberg laws and anti-Jewish policies as part of a larger framework of historic and contemporary antisemitism. Using inquiry and writing-based pedagogy, we will engage with texts and primary sources, including survivor testimonies, to gain insight into how resistance, remembrance, and reflection of tragic historical events can inspire change in today’s world.

Site visits include the US Holocaust Memorial Museum, ADL Headquarters, a local synagogue, and African American historical landmarks. Guest speakers include local Holocaust survivors and other notable community and academic leaders.

Teachers develop action plans to implement a Project-Based Learning unit in their classrooms focused on social justice issues explored in the seminar. By engaging with the stories of the past and present, the cohort will work together to critically analyze this painful past with an eye towards developing a pedagogy of hope.

Further details:

  • Books and materials provided
  • Meals: Breakfasts, lunches, some dinners
  • Professional development credit: 40 hours at no cost
  • Field experiences may include: US Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C., Anti-Defamation League offices, area African American historic sites

Click here to view our flyer.

Thank you to the following sponsors and local partners:

  • Loudon County Public Schools
  • Congregation Sha’are Shalom
  • JCRC of Greater Washington


  • Nicole Korsen

    Nicole Korsen is an English teacher at Dominion High School, teaching both Honors students and EL students who are relatively new to the United States. She is a Teacher Consultant with the Shenandoah Valley National Writing Project, a USHMM trained tour guide, and a Holocaust Educator trained through invitational programs in Washington DC (Belfer National Conference), Israel (the International School for Holocaust Studies at Yad Vashem), and New York (TOLI New York seminar and Leadership Institute). Nicole’s father, a Holocaust survivor, passed away in 2021. Honoring his legacy is and always has been what fuels her passion as a Holocaust Educator. She has found that by engaging the next generation(s) to share in the critical responsibility to apply the lessons from this past to the issues we face today is how real change can happen, echoing the TOLI tag line that “Never Again Begins in the Classroom.” Nicole has authored two recent articles for educators stressing the importance of Holocaust Education. She has presented on Holocaust topics numerous times, including LCPS PD sessions, the LIYLS summit, and was part of the TOLI panel at the 2019 NCTE conference.

  • Julia Berg

    Julia Berg is a middle school social studies teacher in Salisbury, Maryland.  She received her bachelor’s degree in English and Philosophy from Gettysburg College in 2005 and her master’s degree in English Literature from Chapman University in 2008.  Julia is an alumnus of the 2017 Maryland Holocaust Educator’s Network Summer Institute.  As an English teacher in Baltimore City, Julia taught 7th and 8th graders about the Holocaust and other human rights issues, and continues to infuse human rights topics into the middle school history curriculum.  She presented on social justice and the Holocaust at the National Council for Social Studies annual conference in 2019.  Julia is also the co-advisor for the Bennett Middle School chapter of Girls Learn International, an organization dedicated to advancing human rights and gender equality worldwide.


For more information about The Olga Lengyel Institute for Holocaust Studies and Human Rights (TOLI), please contact

TOLI is located at 58 East 79th Street in Manhattan. (get directions)