What students and teachers are saying about The Milton Wolf Prize


“In all honesty, when I was first assigned this project, I was quite nervous about wanting to present an issue, and…I had no idea what issue I would want to present. But throughout this whole project, I slowly got consumed in the role of advocate. I want to help my community in some way, to assure that we can live more safely. That is why my group picked public safety in Newark, NJ.” Karina Pina, Newark, NJ

“I have learned that even the best of heroes need help, too. I have learned how to correctly organize a presentation. I have even improved time management skills, research skills, and communication skills.” Maya Pai, Charleston, SC

“The most meaningful part of the presentation was knowing that our work may be used to help someone out there who is struggling with mental health issues.”  Julie Tovar, Houston, TX 

“I learned how to effectively educate an audience on something that may be seen as controversial, in a way that challenges as well as considers other points of views for the topic of interest. I also discovered that my topic is actually something I am really passionate about, and would like to consider further studies with.” Sarah Choffin, Charlotte, NC


“The most meaningful part of the [Milton Wolf] project to me was our ability to help make our community better for the people living in it, and its visitors.” Adrianne Oliveira, Newark, NJ 


“Students were very driven to make their community more accepting of diversity and teach of the dangers of intolerance and apathy. They became more informed citizens who want to continue making positive changes in their communities.” Katie Batenhorst, 12th grade teacher, Clear Creek High School, League City, TX


“This worked wonderfully as an extension of the Graduation Project, where they had already researched an issue in their community. This project made them look more locally for solutions and leaders, as well as engaged them with their community. It helped the presentation and public speaking skills, too.”  Amanda Stockett, Providence High School, Charlotte, NC

About Centropa



Centropa staff, Budapest, July 2017

Centropa is a Jewish historical institute dedicated to preserving 20th century Jewish family stories from Central and Eastern Europe and the Balkans, and working with teachers to use those stories to engage their students in conversations about history, civics, and ethics.


Since 2000, Centropa has interviewed 1,200 elderly Jews still living in the 15 countries between the Baltic and the Aegean (from Estonia and Russia to Greece and Turkey), but we never used video nor did we focus primarily on the Holocaust. Instead, we collected and digitized thousands of family photos. Our interviewers spent up to twenty hours with each respondent, asking them to paint for us a picture of the world they grew up in - as well as the world they rebuilt for their families after the war (we also dutifully record everything our respondents wish to share with us about the Shoah).


The interviews are audio taped, transcribed, translated and entered into our searchable, keyworded online database at www.centropa.org. Using the photographs and stories, we make short, multimedia films of our most compelling stories, as well as documentaries to put them in context. We have over 40 films, ranging in length from 3 to 30 minutes, perfect for classroom use.  


We work with educators in over 500 schools in 18 countries, teachers who use our resources to teach history, social studies, English language arts, art, film, creative writing, foreign language and AP classes. We hold local workshops, national seminars, and an annual Summer Academy when we bring up to 90 teachers from about 15 countries to the great cities of Central Europe to study together, walk the streets of history, and create cross-cultural projects for their students to carry out during the year. 

Lauren Granite, US Education Director

Fabian Ruehle, Education Director, European Schools

Marcell Kenesei, Education Director, Hungary Programs and the Centropa Jewish Network of European Schools 

Esther Cotoarba, CSA Coordinator





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