Siegal College & Case Western Reserve University form partnership for Jewish Studies continuing adult education




Siegal College, CWRU form partnership

Siegal College & Case Western Reserve University

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When it was announced earlier this week that Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) and Siegel College will combine their adult education into a new initiative, the Laura and Alvin Siegal Lifelong Learning Program at CWRU, representatives from all the involved entities expressed enthusiasm for what the future holds.

Michael Siegal, board chair of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, hopes that as the program takes shape for this fall, Northeast Ohio’s Jewish community will be equally excited.

“(The partnership) creates a perpetuation of a great Jewish studies program, and certainly it enhances Case, which I think is very important for the future of Cleveland,” he said. “We hope that the community recognizes that this positive outcome can lead to positive change. With the additional input of Case, this could be a much stronger program. I hope the community embraces it, and I hope the attention given to it will bring more support from the community.”…READ MORE

JBuzz News January 16, 2012: Joseph Massad: Barnard College cleared in bias case




Barnard College cleared in bias case

Source: JTA, 1-16-12

Barnard College was cleared of charges that a professor discriminated against an Orthodox Jewish student by steering her away from a class.

The U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights on Jan. 11 notified Barnard that it had halted its investigation into a complaint that Professor Rachel McDermott, then the chair of the college’s Asian and Middle Eastern culture department, had discouraged a Barnard freshman in January 2011 from taking a class with Columbia
Professor Joseph Massad, a critic of Israel who also has been accused of being anti-Semitic.

Barnard is affiliated with Columbia.

The Office of Civil Rights said it decided to halt the probe due to conflicting accounts of what occurred during the meeting between McDermott and the student, and because no other Jewish students have come forward to say that they also were steered away from the course.
“Because of the conflicting version of events and no other evidence to support the complainant’s allegation, OCR determined that there was insufficient evidence to substantiate the complainant’s allegation that the Chair discriminated against the Student, on the basis of her national origin, by discouraging her from enrolling in the Course,” the letter said.

The complaint was filed by Kenneth Marcus, director of the Initiative on Anti-Semitism at the Institute for Jewish and Community Research. Marcus told the Columbia Spectator student newspaper that he is looking into appealing the case. Marcus is a former head of the Office of Civil Rights.

JBuzz News January 15, 2012: David Shneer: University of Colorado Professor’s Book Finalist for 2011 National Jewish Book Award




Shneer’s Book Finalist for 2011 National Jewish Book Award

Source: Boulder Jewish News, 1-15-12

Professor David Shneer, Singer Chair in Jewish History at CU. (Photo by Glenn Asakawa/University of Colorado)

Congratulations to David Shneer, Professor of History and Director of the Program in Jewish Studies at the University of Colorado Boulder as his recent book, “Through Soviet Jewish

Eyes: Photography, War and the Holocaust” was selected as a finalist for the 2011 National Jewish Book Award in the Holocaust category.

As the longest-running North American awards program of its kind in the field of Jewish literature, the National Jewish Book Awards is designed to recognize outstanding books of

Jewish interest. Awards were given out for 2011 in fourteen categories. A complete list of the 2011 National Jewish Book Award winners and finalists is available at

JBuzz January 15, 2012: Brazil approves Jewish studies agreement with Israel




Brazil approves Jewish studies agreement with Israel

Source: JTA, 1-15-12

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff approved an agreement to allow students, teachers and researchers in Brazil to teach and research the Holocaust, anti-Semitism and other Jewish-related subjects.
Under the agreement, Hebrew-language and Jewish themes such as the Holocaust, anti-Semitism, racism, xenophobia and intolerance will be part of curricula in some schools, universities and other educational institutions in Brazil.

As part of an inter-country exchange, Portuguese will be taught in academic circles in Israel. Several scholarships will support the exchange.

The agreement is the result of a longtime effort by Osias Wurman, Israel’s honorary consul in Rio and ex-president of the Rio de Janeiro State Jewish Federation.

“Teaching the Holocaust in Brazilian schools is key in a moment when revisionist waves grow, notably from the Iranian government, which try to wipe the memory for future generations,” Wurman told JTA. “We must shed light on the past in order to clear the future.”

The Brazilian-Israeli agreement was signed initially in 2008, approved by the Brazilian Congress in 2010, and eventually sanctioned by the presidency this week to aid in “developing and strengthening the friendship ties between both countries.”
Rousseff, Brazil’s first female president, attended a Holocaust Remembrance Day ceremony less than one month after she started her term one year ago.

“The Holocaust is not and will never be just a historic moment. The duty of the memory should not be mistaken for passiveness of the ordinary remembrance,” she said at the time.
“Memory is the human weapon to prevent the repetition of the barbarism. We must not allow any kind of human rights violation in any country, and especially in Brazil. The Jewish tradition and dignity integrate the Brazilian nationality in a special way.”