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2 January 2018

The Gratz College Holocaust and Genocide Studies Program

Focuseing on the Holocaust, its contemporary significance, and the broader phenomenon of genocide in modern times.

We have just begun a new year, and 2018 holds the promise of renewal, resiliency, as well as the opportunity to engage with learning. One of the questions I am frequently asked by educators is how they can continue to learn about the Holocaust; in particular what programs are there for distance education at a post-secondary level. Gratz College, located in Melrose Park, PA, has  developed graduate level programs to meet the specific needs of contemporary students; in particular those who are looking for distance learning opportunities. The Holocaust and Genocide Studies (HGS) Program offer a Masters as well as a Ph.D. level course of study.

I have been impressed with Gratz’s dedication to excellence in education and their commitment to reaching learners wherever they live. Recently, I accepted the opportunity to become an adjunct faculty member at Gratz College and have begun teaching a course in the Ph.D. stream called Gender and Genocide.

One of the strengths of the Gratz College HGS program is that doctoral students engage in the study of the Holocaust and genocide through a diverse range of academic approaches—historical, sociological, geographical, psychological, legal, literary, gender, theological and scientific—to inform their work.  In the course that I am teaching, there is also a large focus on survivor testimony and students are encouraged to explore the recorded testimonies of Holocaust and genocide testimonies from collections such as the USC Shoah Foundation, The Fortunoff Archive, or Gratz College’s own Holocaust Oral History Archive.

The USC Shoah Foundation’s Archive has expanded significantly in recent years to include survivor and witness testimony from: the Armenian Genocide (1915-1923), the Nanjing Massacre (1937), the Genocide Against the Tutsi in Rwanda (1994) and the Guatemalan Genocide (1978-1996). Analyzing and interpreting oral testimonies from a gendered perspective can contribute significantly to our understanding of these events.

Check out the range of distance education programming available at Gratz College; learning should be, after all, a lifelong journey.


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Carson Phillips Ph.D.

Written byCarson Phillips Ph.D.

Carson Phillips holds a Ph.D. in Humanities from York University, Toronto, Canada and is Managing Director of the Neuberger Holocaust Education Centre. He served as a Canadian delegate to the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance from 2009-2014 and currently continues as an advisor to the Funding Review Committee. In addition, he is an adjunct faculty member at Graz College, USA.

He is the recipient of numerous scholarly awards including the 2013 BMW Canada Award for Excellence from the Canadian Centre for German and European Studies. His research interests focus on post-Holocaust conceptualisations of gender, Väterliteratur and cultural representations of the Holocaust in screen and visual culture.