FR 197: France and the Holocaust in Film and Literature
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Ellie Farber

Liberal Arts Major(s): Economics, History
Minor: French, Jewish Studies
Hometown: Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania

What was the best part of your experience?

The best part of my experience was being able to see the different places that we've been talking about in class throughout the semester. I think that being able to visit places with historical significance can greatly enhance learning about the topic in class, and I was really excited to see various memorial sites about the Holocaust and speak to different people about them. I also thought speaking to Holocaust survivors was a really meaningful experience, especially because we've been talking about witnessing and transmission of stories from the Holocaust a lot in our class. Many of the survivors made a point to tell us that we're all witnessing their stories, and we have to keep the memory of the Holocaust alive even as it becomes further back in history. It was really impactful to be able to hear their stories and was an unforgettable experience.

The best part of my experience was being able to see the different places that we've been talking about in class throughout the semester

How did this experience impact you academically?

After this experience, I felt like I was challenged to analyze the ways that people remember the Holocaust, and it gave me more background for our class. I am able to draw upon our experiences in Paris in the remainder of our class, as well as in some of my other history classes. Additionally, this trip made me want to study abroad in France and change my French minor to a major. It was my first trip to a Francophone country, and I really appreciated being able to use the language. However, it also inspired me to challenge myself with French more and learn the language to the best of my ability.

How will this experience impact your career goals?

This experience impacted my career goals by opening my eyes to different careers involving history and memory. We spoke to historians, employees at museums, and various other people who had careers in fields that, as a history major, I have been considering. Additionally, this experience also made me more aware of careers and other professional experiences in France in general because my professor talked to me a lot about teaching programs in France for Americans after they graduate. I would have never heard about this experience if I had never gone on this trip and spoken to my professor about these types of programs, and now I'm really considering applying to some of them after I graduate.

How has the Paterno Fellows Program had an impact on this experience?

The Paterno Fellows program affected this experience by helping me recognize the significance of this trip as part of my broader education.

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