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2019 Educational activities – a summary report

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In 2019 the Sighet Memorial was visited by 39.847 students (individual or group visits)

In 2019, tens of groups of secondary and high school students visited the Memorial throughout the year as part of the programme School Otherwise.

The staff ot the Sighet Memorial conducted dozens of guided tours for students.



Round tables, meetings, workshops

January-December: Discussions with secondary and high school pupils who visited the Sighet Memorial as part of the programme School Otherwise.

February 19-29: Discussions about the daily life in communism with high school pupils from Sighetu Marmației after the projections of the movie Cold War (Poland, 2018).

March-June: Educational workshops for students as part of the project Monuments of Remembrance 1918-2018, with the participation of 88 students from Bucharest, Cosesti (Argeș County) and Sighetu Marmației. The workshops were organized to bring closer the knowledge about the ways in which monuments can be used to learn about history and therefore to better understand the role of memory in shaping identity and values was the aim of the project Monuments of Remembrance 1918-2018.

March-November: Essay competition How is Romania in 2019 different than how it was up until 1989? The Civic Academy Foundation partnered up once again with the Corneliu Coposu Foundation, which organized an essay competition in 2019. It invited competition essay entries from pupils and students, who were given an intellectual and moral challenge: thirty years after the fall of the Communist regime, they were asked to compare and explain the differences between Communist and Post-Communist Romania. Participants were encouraged to use both historical sources and oral history via personal interviews. The competition was open to pupils, undergraduate students, Master’s students and doctoral students from Romania, Bessarabia (Republic of Moldavia) and Bukovina (Ukraine), but also from other countries in Europe.

May 18-19: Documentary field trip at the Sighet Memorial for students of the Faculty of History and Philosophy, Department of International Studies and Contemporary History, Babeș-Bolyai University. The participants, 20 undergraduate and graduate students coordinated by Univ. Prof. Dr. Virgiliu Țârău participated in a round table discussion, which was held in the Memorial’s conference hall and moderated by historians Andrea Dobeș and Robert Fürtös, on the topic of political prisoners in Communist Romania and the political repression conducted by Communist authorities. The discussion was followed by a guided tour of the Memorial and a visit to the Paupers’ Cemetery.

May 19: Discussion and visit of students from Iași University, Catholic Theology Department, to the Sighet Memorial: In memory of Archbishop Anton Durcovici. A group of 45 students from Iași, along with Father Dr. Fabian Doboș, participated to the annual visit organized to the Sighet Memorial. A discussion was held there, moderated by Andrea Dobeș.

September: Workshops with high school students from Romania and Hungary in the framework of the educational project 30 years from the Fall of Communism in Romanian and Hungary, coordinated by prof. Akosi Zsolt, “Leőwey Klára” High School, Sighetu Marmației.

October: Workshops with pupils from Romania, Poland and Germany, participating in an Erasmus Project: Sighet. From the Holocaust to Communism, coordinated by prof. Ovidiu Sechel and Father Vasile Iusco.

October 18-21: Workshops with students from Babeș-Bolyai University and Baia Mare University in the framework of the international conference Resistance through Culture, in the Communist time and today.

November: Experiential guided tour. Another way to discover a territory. Students from Babeș-Bolyai University, Faculty of Geography, Sighetu Marmației Extension participated to several guided tours of the Sighet Memorial, as part of the project Le guidage touristique expérientiel, une autre façon de découvrir un territoire, which was run with the support of the Francophone University Agency (AUF) in the academic year 2019-2020. Guided tours and discussions with students were coordinated on behalf of the Sighet Memorial by Gabriela Kadar, museum educator.

December: 30 Years from the Fall of Communism round table with students of the Technological Forestry High School in Sighetu Marmației. The discussion was moderated by Andrea Dobeș, historian and researcher at the Sighet Memorial and Ioana Csillik, history teacher. The participants visited the temporary exhibition Iron Court Fall organized by Post Bellum Slovakia.



Dialogues with the victims of the communist totalitarian regime

February 20: Dialogue between Ion Ilban, former political detainee and students from Dragos Voda National College in Sighet, moderated by Andrea Dobeș and History teacher Marius Voinaghi

May 11: Dialogue between Peter Falk, former political detainee and students from Matei Basarab National College, Bucharest moderated by History teacher Nicolae Dița, part of the project ”Stories from Communist prisons”

June 6:  Students of the Babeș-Bolyai University in Cluj and High school students from Sighet and Cernăuți joined former political prisoners for the celebration of the Day of Memory, thus entering into an inter-generational dialogue


International Summer School “The Memory Culture and the Cultural Heritage for the younger generation”

August 23-29: the International Summer School “The Memory Culture and the Cultural Heritage for the younger generation” was organized by the State University of Moldova, the Ministry of Culture and Cultural Heritage, Center of Excellence the ProMemoria Institute in partnership with the Genocide and Resistance Research Centre of Lithuania (Vilnius), Institute of History (Chișinău), Ipotești Memorial – the National Center for studies “Mihai Eminescu” and the Sighet Memorial.



Autumn School ”Social Policies under Romanian Communism”

September 23-29: the 4th edition of the Autumn School “Social Policies under Romanian Communism”: Romanian cultural and political elites in the 20th century. From the integration into Great Romania to the disintegration in the communist gulag took place in Cluj and in Sighet. The Autumn School is organized within the Department of International Studies and Contemporary History of Babes-Bolyai University in partnership with Konrad Adenauer Foundation and Civic Academy Foundation – the Sighet Memorial to the Victims of Communism. The academic event dedicated to PhD students and master’s students from the Romanian history faculties specialized in recent history has reached in 2019 the fourth edition.




History classes

9 History classes held at the Sighet Memorial, on the topic of recent history, organized in partnership with history teachers: Ioana Roman, Secondary School, Borșa; Mariana Șuștic, dr. Ioan Mihaly de Apşa, Secondary School, Sighetu Marmației; Marius Voinaghi, Ileana Sauliuc, Vida Flaviu, Claudiu Holdiș, “Dragoș Vodă” National College, Sighetu Marmației; Ioana Csillik, Forest Technological High School, Sighetu Marmației; Akosi Zsolt, “Leőwey Klára” High School, Sighetu Marmației; Ovidiu Sechel, “King Ferdinand” High School, Sighetu Marmației.