Every year, the Holocaust Commission invites middle and high school students in grades 6-12 to participate in writing and visual arts competitions named in honor of Nobel Laureate and Holocaust Survivor, Elie Wiesel.  

2022 Winners

Writing Competition

Multimedia Competition

Visual Arts Competition

Visual Arts Virtual Art Show 


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Elie Wiesel was a Romanian-born Jewish writer, Nobel Laureate, and Holocaust survivor. He wrote more than 60 books, including Night, a work based on his experiences as a prisoner in the Auschwitz and Buchenwald concentration camps.

The writing and visual arts competitions take place in the winter, and guide students in their exploration of moral courage, the dangers of prejudice, peer pressure, unthinking obedience to authority, and indifference. 

Student winners receive cash prizes, and classroom teachers who submit a minimum number of student entries, regardless of awards, will receive a set of Holocaust-related books for their classrooms or a gift certificate for art supplies. Winners are honored and their entries are shared at the annual Yom Hashoah program in the spring. Winning and notable art entries themselves have been displayed in a gallery exhibit at the Chrysler Museum of Art, Old Dominion University Virginia Beach Center, the Meyera C. Oberndorf Virginia Beach Central Library, The Simon Family Jewish Community Center, and other prominent local art venues.

Prize winners are selected by independent judges and are based on each year's competition prompts. 

The competitions are underwritten by the Simon Family Foundation and Towne Bank.


2021 Elie Wiesel Competition Booklet


2019 Elie Wiesel Student Art Exhibit in the News


2016 Elie Wiesel Student Art Exhibit in the News

Students explore the lessons of the Holocaust through art at Virginia Beach exhibit - The Virginian-Pilot, May 25, 2016


2015 Elie Wiesel Student Art Exhibit in the News

Norfolk student among winners of Elie Wiesel competition - Norfolk Compass, May 31, 2015


The awarding of prizes to written and digital material submitted by students is not an endorsement of opinions expressed in the submissions, which belong wholly to the student writers and artists.