On Wednesday 5th February, Rockwood Academy welcomed a very special visitor to the school. Agnes Kaposi, an emeritus professor in electrical engineering at London South Bank University, is the second Holocaust survivor to visit the school as part of Echo Eternal’s ongoing Holocaust Remembrance project.
As it was Agnes’ first visit to Rockwood Academy, she was very interested in discovering the local community where the school is based, as well as how the CORE values of the school and community could benefit from her visit when she returns on February the 25th to meet the students of Rockwood.
Although Rockwood Academy, along with the other schools at CORE, has already been working hard on numerous projects as part of Echo Eternal’s wider Holocaust Remembrance event, Agnes is determined that her next visit will make an impact in different ways to what has been done before.
Agnes is working with Ms Mahmood and the science department to deliver a series of extended workshops focused on STEM. But, thanks to Agnes, these workshops will be a new experience in comparison to other STEM workshops that have previously taken place at Rockwood. Our special visitor intends to utilise her unique position as both a Holocaust survivor and a woman in STEM to talk about her own experiences in the engineering field setting up communication networks, and why women are an important addition to the engineering sphere. Students, therefore, will encounter first-hand the stories of the difficulties Agnes faced in her life and career leading up to her becoming the third ever female to be elected a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering.
What’s more, Agnes is planning assemblies based around the dangers of hate: her story and voice ready to be heard by all students at the school. An unconventional way for students to learn about the past, Agnes speaks as a living piece of history, enabling our students to connect to the Holocaust on an emotional level.
“When students have met Holocaust survivors before, their response was excellent – they could recognise the value of meeting someone in real life compared to rehearsing historical facts in the classroom. It’s a very valuable learning experience for them, allowing them to engage with history in ways they otherwise wouldn’t be able to,” says Mr Donaldson, Project Co-ordinator. He also thanks Agnes for her efforts: “because Agnes is willing to give assemblies to the whole school, all of our students are given the opportunity to engage with a real Holocaust survivor, which is a first for Rockwood Academy.”
We look forward to welcoming Agnes again on 25th February!