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News from the 19th Floor – Alfred Lerner Fellows – January 2020

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News from the 19th Floor

2019 European Study Program Lerner Fellows at the Zeppelinfeld, Nuremberg, Germany


Information on the JFR 2020 European Study Program to Germany and Poland was sent out last month and we have begun to receive applications.  The dates of the 2020 European Study Program are July 5 through July 19, 2020.  The Study Program starts in Munich and ends in Auschwitz where we spend four nights.  Professor Robert Jan van Pelt is our scholar for the program. It is possible for teachers attending the 2020 Summer Institute for Teachers to participate in the European Study Program.  Please let Stanlee know if you are interested in joining us this July. Click here for information and an application for the 2020 European Study Program.


We are looking forward to welcoming 25 Lerner Fellows to the 2020 Advanced Seminar over Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. weekend.  This year the Advanced Seminar will start Saturday morning, rather than after lunch.  We are devoting the entire day, Saturday, January 18, to a study of antisemitism and how to teach to this complex subject in the classroom.

Ira Forman, Adjunct Professor on Anti-Semitism – Center for Jewish Civilization at Georgetown University and the former Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism, U.S. Department of State, will present on anti-Judaism and antisemitism. Günther Jikeli, the Erna B. Rosenfeld Professor, Institute for the Study of Contemporary Antisemitism at Indiana University, will lecture on antisemitism.  Simone Schweber, the Goodman Professor of Education and Jewish Studies, at the University of Wisconsin – Madison, will present on how to teach this complex subject.

Stefan Hördler, the former director of the Mittlebau-Dora Memorial site, will lecture on “Holocaust Photography: Chances and Limits of a Critical Photo Analysis” and “New Research on the Evolution of the Nazi Concentration Camp System, 1933-1945.”  We met Stefan in the summer of 2018, during our European Study Program to Germany and the Netherlands.  Dr. Hördler personally took our group through the memorial site.  Dr. Hördler has a wealth of information to share.

On Sunday, Robert Jan van Pelt will lead participants through the “Auschwitz Exhibition – Not Long Ago. Not Far Away” at the Museum of Jewish Heritage.  Professor van Pelt curated the Auschwitz Exhibition.

We are going to start planning the 2021 program shortly.  If you would like to have a specific topic or area addressed or to hear from a particular scholar, please let Stanlee know.

2019 Advanced Seminar
Roman Kent, JFR Board President.


January 27th is the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz.  Consider showing your students the award winning documentary the JFR produced on Roman Kent, JFR’s President and an Auschwitz survivor.  Click here for a link to the documentary, A Survivor’s Journey, The Life of Roman Kent The documentary is perfect for a class period.


In December 2019, Stanlee was at the State Museum Auschwitz-Birkenau to discuss the Artifact Box with Museum staff.  We have finalized the list of artifacts and we are working on the fabrication of the artifacts.  The Teachers Guide is also being written.

Prisoners cap from Auschwitz-Birkenau. (Photo courtesy of Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum.)
Oksana A., from Ukraine


In December, the JFR sent rescuers a special award of $1,750 for the purchase of food during the Christmas holiday season, for home heating fuel, and for medications. When we sent the special award, we asked for photos of the rescuers.  We would like to share some of their thank notes and photos. Click here to see them. Thanks to the generosity of our donors, we are able to make a difference in the day-to-day lives of the rescuers.


We have a new telephone number – 973-736-1800. 


If you change names, home address, place of employment, telephone numbers, emails – please do let us know so we can keep your record current.

As we start a new year, I wish everyone only good things! Please do stay in touch.

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