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By Bill Parry

A Briarwood teacher was one of only 25 educators from around the world chosen to participate in a unique professional development program in Poland as part of “Auschwitz: The Past is Present.” The program is part of the official observance of the 70th anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi death camp.

Archbishop Molloy High School’s Sabina Kobinski will join teachers from 11 countries representing four continents in attending a four-day workshop designed to deepen their understanding of the historical landscape of Poland before, during and after the Holocaust and increase participants’ knowledge of authentic sites including Auschwitz-Birkenau.

Kobinski and the other participants will have the unprecedented opportunity to meet with a large number of Holocaust survivors prior to attending the commemoration ceremony at Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum.

“Survivors share their stories because they understand how vital it is that future generations never forget what happened at places like Auschwitz,” USC Shoah Foundation Director of Education Dr. Kori Street said. “By bringing teachers to a place where so many atrocities occurred, is a way to show survivors that we take seriously our responsibility of keeping their voices strong forever.”

The program will begin in Warsaw Jan. 23 at the Museum of the History of Polish Jews and conclude at the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum Jan. 27.

“My journey to Auschwitz is very personal,” Kobinski said. “I hope that it will deepen the connection I have with my uncle, who is a survivor of Auschwitz, Gross Rosen, Schsenhausen and Dachau. I will carry this forever into my teaching career and to the benefit of my students.

Reach reporter Bill Parry by e-mail at bparr‌y@cng‌local.com or by phone at (718) 260–4538.

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