Monday, July 22, 2013

Daemen Students in Przemysl

Przemysl is a beautiful city (pop. 66,756) located in eastern Poland. Ukraine is only a few miles away, and the thousand-year history of Przemysl is closely connected with the western region of today's Ukraine.

View of the Old Town in Przemysl.

The winding streets of Old Town are dotted with old churches. Pictured below is the Roman Catholic Archcathedral, which was extensively renovated in the 18th century in the Baroque style.

Roman Catholic Archcathedral, with Bell Tower to the right.

A legend tells the story of a hunter who killed a huge bear on the site at which the city was later established. The bear has served as the symbol for the city of Przemysl for centuries.

Bear fountain in Old Town.

There are new developments in Przemysl, too. The National Museum of the Przemysl Land opened to the public in 2008.

Daemen students on the roof of the National Museum on the edge of Old Town in Przemysl.

One permanent exhibit at the National Museum features dozens of paintings and devotional items from the Polish and Ukrainian Christian traditions. Many of the icons were painted by artists from the Przemysl region.

Medieval icon depicting St. George slaying a dragon.

The National Museum also currently features a temporary exhibit of works by contemporary Polish artist Jozef Wilkon.

A more whimsical dragon on exhibit in the National Museum in Przemysl.

Students from Daemen College and PWSW began their coursework in Przemysl on 8 July. The lecturer for the first week was Dr. Tomasz Pudlocki (Jagiellonian University). Dr. Pudlocki is pictured below in Old Town, after a business luncheon with other faculty.

Pictured left to right: Agata Obratanska, Andrew Wise, Tomasz Pudlocki, and John Hartman.

The PWSW campus features a splendid palace built by the Lubomirski family in the 19th century.

The Lubomirski Palace on the PWSW campus.

Restoration work on the palace and the surrounding grounds is ongoing. Recently the garden area was restored to fit with the original vision.

Newly renovated gardens on the PWSW campus.

Coursework in Przemysl focuses on the theme of Polish-Jewish relations in the twentieth century. A service learning project engages Daemen and PWSW students in the continued restoration and preservation of the local Jewish cemetery that was damaged during World War II. Dr. John Hartman has led these efforts for two decades, and his foundation (Remembrance and Reconciliation, Inc.) oversees any related project.

Faculty and students outside the Jewish cemetery in Przemysl.

Dr. Hartman travelled to Przemysl to spend a week providing lectures and orientation tours of the Jewish cemetery for students.

Dr. Hartman with students on the PWSW campus.

Daemen and PWSW students are engaged in mapping the cemetery, which will provide precise locations for each grave. In years to come, images and biographical data will be added to an online guide that will help family members around the world find information about their ancestors and the location of their graves in the Jewish cemetery in Przemysl.

On 15 July, Dr. Joseph Sankoh (Associate Professor of Political Science) arrived from Daemen College to conduct a seminar on service learning and take part in the program.

Dr. Sankoh, Dr Hartman and students discussing the service learning project.

Look for blog updates on the service learning project in the coming days.

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