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Holocaust Remembrance and Genocide Awareness Week

Holocaust Remembrance and Genocide Awareness Week is a series of events held between mid-April and early May on the KWU campus (and often off campus as well) to remember those who died in the Nazi Holocaust of World War II and to raise awareness of the ongoing problem of genocide throughout the world. Begun in 2007 as "Holocaust Remembrance Week" by the KWU Department of History, the annual event has grown every year. It is characterized by cross-campus participation, diverse programs and events, sponsorship by a wide variety of local and national entities, and draws an audience that includes students from KWU and other schools, as well as many guests from Salina and outlying communities. In 2012 the name of the event was expanded to "Holocaust Remembrance and Genocide Awareness Week" to better reflect the trend seen at Holocaust museums, cultural and survivor associations, and academic programs to link the two topics as a way of confronting the ongoing threat of genocide.

The KWU 2020 Holocaust Remembrance and Genocide Awareness was, unfortunately, canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the need for social distancing. 

Our heartfelt thanks go out to all of the well-intentioned local sponsors and participants, as well as our friends and colleagues at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum's Speakers Bureau, who were on board for our 2020 week of remembrance and awareness before the decision was made to cancel campus events due to COVID-19. Please review the information for our 2019 events below (as well as previous events dating back to 2007 in the purple box to the right). We look forward to having a very special remembrance and awareness event in Spring of 2021.

KWU Presents the 2019 Holocaust Remembrance and Genocide Awareness -- April 8th - 10th, 2019.

This year's 13th Annual Holocaust Remembrance and Genocide Awareness Week is coordinated by the KWU Department of History and sponsored with generous financial support by Smoky Hill Museum, the KWU Alumni Association, and several private donors. Special thanks also go to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum's Speakers Bureau in Washington, D.C. for providing our guest Holocaust survivor speaker. All events are open to the public without charge.

Lecture: "Bonhoeffer: Theologian and Martyr"

Monday, April 8, 2019 | 7pm-8pm | Pioneer Hall, Room 325 

Dr. Meredith Drees, Assistant Professor of Religion and Philosophy, will explore the life and writings of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the pastor and theologian who wrote, The Cost of Discipleship and sacrificed his life in order to “suffer with those who suffered.” Dr. Drees will examine a selection of passages that display Bonhoeffer's extraordinary understanding of faith in times of conflict, his rejection of “cheap grace,” and his determination to do the will of God, even at the ultimate cost. A brief Q. and A. period will follow.

Video: "A Film Unfinished" (2010)

Tuesday, April 9th, 2019 |6:30pm-8:00pm | Pioneer Hall, Room 325 

The documentary: “A Film Unfinished” (Oscilloscope Laboratories, 2010)  provides insight into the Nazi propaganda machine during the Holocaust. Filmed in the Warsaw Ghetto in 1942 right before the ghetto’s liquidation, it illustrates Nazi techniques to stage their activities in Poland in a favorable light, while at the same time providing rarely seen footage of the horror perpetrated on the Jewish population of Warsaw during the Holocaust. Not Rated. A brief discussion period will follow the screening.

Holocaust Survivor Guest Speaker:

Wednesday, April 10th, 2019 | 7:00pm-8:00pm | Sams Chapel (2nd Floor of Pioneer Hall)

Mr. Emmanuel (Manny) Mandel will visit the KWU campus to share his experiences during the Holocaust. Of Hungarian origin, though born in Riga, Latvia in 1936, shortly after his birth the family moved back to Budapest, Hungary where his father became a cantor at the city’s main synagogue. Manny was eight when Nazi Germany occupied Hungary in 1944. His father was impressed into a forced labor gang and Manny, his mother, and brother were sent to the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in Germany. They remained there for six months and were then among a fortunate group traded by the Nazis to the Jewish Rescue and Relief Committee in exchange for trucks and other goods. They were taken to Switzerland and then immigrated to Palestine in 1945 once the war was over. Manny’s father also survived and soon joined them. The family then moved to the U.S. in 1949, settling in Philadelphia and becoming American citizens. Manny eventually became a practicing psychotherapist in Maryland until his retirement in 2014. His visit is made possible through the courtesy of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and arranged by the KWU Department of History.


Wednesday, April 10th, 2019 | 8:30pm | Brown Mezzanine of the Hauptli Student Activities Center (2nd Floor) 

Please join us and meet our guest Holocaust survivor speaker in a casual and comfortable setting shortly after his presentation in Sams Chapel has concluded. Light refreshments will be provided. Sponsored by the KWU Memorial Library.

Listen to an interesting interview on KSAL "Friendly Fire" show on Apr. 1, 2019:

Dr. Mike Russell discusses the 2019 KWU Holocaust Remembrance and Genocide Awareness Week and other aspects of the Holocaust with host Jeff Garettson and guest co-host Nancy Hodges. Note: due to original file size, the recording was provided to us in four segments. Also, the recording begins about 1 minute into the interview, missing the introduction, and cutting-in when Dr. Russell is discussing the important relationship between KWU and the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum.