(JTA) — Yeshiva University has founded a new Holocaust and Genocide Studies Center.
The Emil A. and Jenny Fish Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies will train both school and university educators, offering them interdisciplinary graduate programs in Holocaust and Genocide Studies, incorporating history, Jewish studies, literature, law, philosophy and social work, the university said in a statement.
Emil Fish, who was born in Bardejov, Slovakia, was sent with his mother and sister to Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, and was liberated from there in 1945. After reuniting with his father, the family immigrated to Canada and in 1955 moved to Los Angeles.
Fish is the founder in 2006 and president of the Bardejov Jewish Preservation Committee, whose mission is to “restore the Jewish properties of Bardejov, Slovakia”; “build awareness of the cultural and historical significance of Jewish life in Bardejov and Slovakia”; and “advance knowledge of Jewish ancestry and heritage.”
“We must know the history about what happened and why, and what the implications are for today,” Fish said in a statement. “The Center will educate young people and adults about a singular event in history that, regrettably, too few people understand, including what conditions existed before the Nazis ascended to power, how they rose to leadership positions and why they targeted Jews.”
A university spokesman told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that “The Fish Family has committed a generous amount of time, energy and resources to ensure the center’s success.”