Sala Kryszek Art & Writing Competition

The annual Sala Kryszek Art & Writing Competition for middle and high school students encourages youth to evaluate history, foster an awareness of the Holocaust, and broaden their minds in the areas of art, history, civics, sociology, and literature. For the competition, students are presented with a prompt that becomes their cue to create a piece of writing or a work of art. 

The prompts for the contest provide an opportunity for students to consider the circumstances in which a situation like the Holocaust can occur. We hope educators will encourage students to participate in the competition by helping them interpret this prompt in a way that is relevant to their classrooms. Entries can reflect a wide range of literary and world history topics, although we ask students to relate their responses in some way to what they've learned about the Holocaust. 

Important Dates

Entry Deadline: Friday, March 18, 2016

Awards Ceremony: Sunday, May 1st, 2016

2016 Creative Prompt

To thoughtfully respond to the prompt, carefully consider these questions: 
How could the Holocaust happen in a country like Germany, a country with abundant education and people who achieved great advancements in science, art, music, literature and philosophy? Do you think that something like this still happens in the world today?  What steps can you take now and in the future to offset these events from taking place? 

The Prompt
Using what you have learned about the Holocaust, create a piece of writing or a work of visual art that reflects your response to the above questions. Visual art submissions require a brief ‘artist statement’ of one or two sentences describing your association between Holocaust history and the artwork you created in response to the prompt.


A Grand Prize Sala Kryszek Award winner will be selected in both the writing and art categories. These students, along with one of their parents and one of their teachers, will travel to Washington, D.C., to visit the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. In addition, judges will award first, second, and third place prizes in two divisions: the senior high school division (Grades 9-12), and the junior middle school division (Grades 6-8). Honorable mentions may be awarded. All winners will receive a Certificate of Achievement.


Winning entries will be displayed at OJMCHE and potentially other exhibit venues where communities that extend beyond the classroom can celebrate your students’ outstanding achievements. 


The competition is dedicated to the memory of Sala Kryszek, a Holocaust survivor who came to Portland after the Second World War and lived here until her death in 1986. The Jakob Kryszek family generously funds the program.


2015 Winners


Entries for this year’s competition are due Friday, March 20, 2015. 


Winners will be notified during mid-April and will be invited to an awards ceremony on Sunday, May 3rd, 2015. 


Entries for this year’s competition are due Friday, March 20, 2015. 


Winners will be notified during mid-April and will be invited to an awards ceremony on Sunday, May 3rd, 2015. 


Entries for this year’s competition are due Friday, March 20, 2015. 


Winners will be notified during mid-April and will be invited to an awards ceremony on Sunday, May 3rd, 2015.