SMU Human Rights in Poland 2014

Students blog about their experiences on a recent study tour of Holocaust sites in Poland.

Plaszow Memorial
Plaszow Memorial
Plaszow Concentration Camp Memorial

Twenty members of the SMU community participated in a study tour of Holocaust sites in Poland Dec. 18-30, 2014. 

Led by SMU Embrey Human Rights Program (EHRP) Director Rick Halperin, 16 SMU students traveled with two SMU staffers and Altshuler Distinguished Teaching Professor James K. Hopkins, who teaches European history in SMU’s Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences. The group visited cities and death camps throughout Poland, where, during World War II some 4,375,000 people were murdered during the Nazi, Germany, occupation.

Read entries from their blog.

Upcoming Human Rights Tours

Twelve students in SMU’s Student Leadership Initiative (SLI), sponsored by the Embrey Human Rights Program, will participate in a service-learning trip to Costa Rica Jan. 2-12, 2015. The SLI students will be led by Dr. Howard J. Recinos, Professor of Church and Society at SMU Perkins School of Theology, and Dr. Joci Caldwell Ryan, a lecturer in the women’s and gender studies program of SMU’s Dedman College of Humanities Caldwell-Ryan.

Another Holocaust-focused trip will have SMU students, faculty and staff visiting Budapest, Hungary, Jan. 7-13, 2015. Led by EHRP director Rick Halperin, 12 undergraduate and master’s level students will travel to the country along with Vicki Hill, SMU’s Assistant Dean for the University Curriculum. In an effort to address past, present and future identity issues stemming from what happened in Hungary before, during and after its Nazi-occupation in World War II, the group will meet with Holocaust survivors, witnesses and rescuers.

Blogs from earlier tours of Holocaust sites

In previous years, SMU students, faculty and staff have toured Holocaust sites as part of SMU' Embrey Human Rights Program. Read their blogs:

  • Human Rights, Poland. (Winter 2012) Eighteen professors, academic professionals, students and community members from SMU and across Texas traveled through Poland to study the Holocaust.
  • Human Rights, Germany. (Spring 2011) During spring break 2011, students, faculty and staff are visiting Holocaust sites in Germany.
  • Human Rights, Poland. (Winter 2011) During winter break 2011, SMU students and professors and Dallas community members traveled through Poland to study the Holocaust.
  • Human Rights, the Baltics. (Spring 2010) During Spring Break 2010, students, faculty and staff visited World War II sites in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, including the Bikernieki Memorial, where 40,000 Jews were slain; the Jewish Museum in Riga; and the Jungfernhof concentration camp.
  • Human Rights, Poland. (Winter 2010) In December 2010, the Embrey Human Rights Program is took students and staff on a tour to Poland, where they will visit World War II memorials and concentration camps.