Zoe Susser, SHU Sec ED/Music major and Survivor Fran Malkin.
The Perils and Promises of Diversity Initiative (PPDI), co-convened by the Center for the Study of Genocide, and co-sponsored by the Rutgers University English Language Institute and the Educational Studies Department at Seton Hall, hosted a Holocaust Remembrance event on Wednesday, February 12th. Secondary Education students had an opportunity to hear narratives of survival, and meet and speak with Survivor Fran Malkin.
The event opened with comments from Dr. James Daly, a founding partner in PPDI, and Professor Nela Navarro, a founding partner from Rutgers University. Opening comments on the history of anti-Semitism were offered by Igor A. Kotler, President and Executive Director of the Museum of Human Rights, Freedom and Tolerance in Millburn, NJ.
Zoe Susser introducing Survivor Fran Malkin.
Zoe Susser, a Secondary Education, and Music major had a grandmother and grandfather who survived the Holocaust. She shared the story of her grandfather. This personal narrative addressed the inter-generational experience of the event and the challenge for the young to keep the memories, stories, and lessons from the horrors of the Holocaust alive.
Fran Malkin then provided her recollections, supported by readings from a book one of her relatives prepared (also a survivor). The personal details of life in hiding, of the ultimate sacrifice her family was prepared to make, and of reflections on the time period were thoughtful, riveting, painful, and hopeful. The challenge to the audience of future teachers was to consider how they will work with their students to address bigotry, hatred, and evil – so that future generations also never forget.
Igor A. Kotler (President and Executive Director of the Museum of Human Rights, Freedom and Tolerance in Millburn, NJ.), Zoe’s Uncle, Zoe Susser, Fran Malkin, and Gideon Frydman (Deputy Director of Research and Development Museum of Human Rights, Freedom and Tolerance, Millburn, NJ).
This year's focus on PPDI is Hatred and Bigotry: Building Peace and Hope. The Initiative involves partnerships with elementary schools, middle and high schools, and universities in several countries. Scholars and activists are also partners. There are regular international zoom sessions (most recently on Saturday, Feb 1), and Seton Hall and Rutgers have hosted Scholars in Residence (in Spring 2019) Dr. Bob Mark of Israel, and hopefully this Spring Daniel Fernandez Fuentes, social communicator, artist and culture of peace researcher.
View more information about Survivor Fran Malkin.
Watch a documentary about Fran's experience.