Atlanta Jewish Academy juniors Ezra Blaut, Max Cohen and Ruby Jacobs are among 11 high school students selected as the Lynne & Howard Halpern Atlanta delegates for the Anti-Defamation League’s 16th annual Grosfeld Family National Youth Leadership Mission to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington from Sunday to Wednesday, Nov. 15 to 18.
“I want to participate in this mission because I have witnessed prejudice, especially anti-Semitism,” Ruby said.
The ethnically and racially diverse group of students will convene in Washington to wrestle with the issues of bigotry and intolerance in America.
“I think this trip will give me useful skills I can apply to my life both now and in the future,” Ezra said.
The centerpiece of the mission will be a visit to the museum, which will not only educate the delegates about the Holocaust, but also enable exploration of the issues of extremism and bigotry. The students will hear from Holocaust survivors and civil rights leaders.
“I am excited to participate because I have encountered hatred towards me and want to do what is possible to end those situations,” Max said.
The ADL developed the National Youth Leadership Mission to confront racial and ethnic tensions by motivating students to fight prejudice in their lives, their schools and their communities.
“This mission encourages open communication and frank discussion so our youth can learn the benefits of diversity and be given the tools to combat bigotry,” said Shelley Rose, the senior associate regional director of the ADL Southeast Region in Buckhead.
The ADL initiated the National Youth Leadership Mission in 1996. This year’s mission involves 130 high school students from Atlanta, Chicago, Connecticut, Denver, Florida, Los Angeles, New England, New Orleans, New York, California, St. Louis, and Washington, D.C.
Besides AJA, the Atlanta delegates, all juniors, are Kara Christopher, Erin Massey and Japjee Singh of Dunwoody High School; LaTivia McCowan, Chrystal McLeod and Cedric Tuggle of Cedar Grove High School; and Brittaney Jackson and Roland Pack of Benjamin E. Mays High School.