Diana Gergel, '09
Published: Spring 2008
Activities Outside the Classroom Round-Out This Student's Carolina Education
Diana Gergel is one of those people who make everyone else look like they’re standing still. Her campus involvement would overwhelm most of us—she co-chairs Student Government’s Academic Affairs Committee, serves as Peer Advising Program Director for the Office of Undergraduate Research, coordinates the Bina Initiative at Hillel and is the student representative on the Carolina Center for Jewish Studies’ Advisory Board.
Her busy schedule does not slow one bit during summer breaks. Last summer, she headed off to Washington, D.C. to work at the Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. There, she reviewed and chronicled newly-acquired documents. The team’s work will be published next year as primary source content for professors teaching the Holocaust.
“This internship was one of the best experiences of my life—I enjoyed every minute. The ability, as an undergraduate, to work so closely with Holocaust scholars and graduate students was a great learning experience,” said Gergel. “I felt the importance of the work because it is vital to continue to teach the lessons learned from the Holocaust.”
When not working at the museum, she was often found at the Library of Congress working on a research project that was funded by the UNC Office of Undergraduate Research. The focus of her work was the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission as related to the Nuremberg Trials’ “Never Again” legacy. This coming summer, Gergel hopes to continue this work in South Africa, interviewing people from the hearings.
“These types of research opportunities, plus knowing that Carolina had a Jewish Studies program and active Hillel, were all important factors in my decision to study here,” added Gergle. A History and Political Sciences major with Modern Hebrew minor, she plans to attend Law School after graduation from Carolina in 2009.