Holocaust and Genocide Studies

Holocaust and Genocide Studies

The Institute of Holocaust and Genocide Studies at RVCC stands in solidarity with our Jewish students, colleagues, and the broader Jewish community. The recent FBI warning of potential threats to NJ synagogues is unacceptable. Jews and non-Jews alike cannot tolerate threats such as these. We should all be able to go to our house of worship and feel safe. We should all, regardless of race, religion, nationality, sexuality, gender identity, or country of origin, be able to walk in the world and not feel afraid based on these identities. In November, we commemorate Kristallnacht, The Night of Broken Glass. This pogrom took place in Germany on November 9th and 10th, 1938. Jewish homes, businesses, and synagogues were destroyed, and 30 thousand Jewish men were arrested and put in concentration camps in Nazi Germany. We need to learn from the past and continue to speak out when we see such hate in our communities.


Our RVCC community stands in solidarity with people of all races, ethnicities, nationalities, sexualities, gender identities, faiths, countries of origin, and differently-abled people. We believe that racism and hate in any form toward any individual or group are unacceptable. We continue to strive to educate our community and beyond about existing structural racism and inequalities. We are dedicated to celebrating our diverse RVCC community.

Since 1981, The Institute of Holocaust & Genocide Studies has offered diverse educational programs for educators, students, and the community. Through our unique programming, the Institute—a collaboration between RVCC and the Jewish Federation of Somerset, Hunterdon & Warren Counties—promotes historical awareness and cultural understanding and addresses the implications of societal norms. The Institute offers educational seminars, workshops, and presentations for students and teachers about the lessons learned from the Holocaust and genocides that continue today. During the pandemic, we have expanded our outreach to the broader community through the presentations of virtual webinars. Additionally, "Learning Through Experience," the Institute's cornerstone educational program, began as a one-day program more than 39 years ago and has now grown into a two-day annual event. The program has educated more than 150,000 middle and high school students and educators with a unique series of guest speaker workshops addressing the Holocaust and genocide.

The work of the Institute is also a vital part of the educational experience on campus. The Morris and Dorothy Hirsch Research Library of The Holocaust, Genocide, and Racism is located on the second floor of the College’s Evelyn S Field Library. In addition to housing the travelling exhibits the Institute brings to campus, the Hirsch Research Library offers books, a video collection, reference materials for research and study, and an area for classroom instruction. The research library provides a wealth of new and current information directly connected to the programs and events offered by the Institute for Holocaust and Genocide Studies. RVCC professors are encouraged to bring their classes to see the exhibits on display, and students are frequently studying and researching using the extensive materials available in this space.

For information regarding programming, resource information, or annual events, contact Michelle Edgar, Program Specialist, michelle.edgar@raritanval.edu, 908-526-1200, x8735. 

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The programs are being co-sponsored by The Jewish Federation of Somerset, Hunterdon, & Warren Counties, The New Jersey Commission on Holocaust Education, and the Holocaust Education Center of the Shimon and Sara Birnbaum Jewish Community Center.

Holocaust & Genocide Institute
Holocaust & Genocide Institute
Holocaust & Genocide Institute
Holocaust & Genocide Institute
Holocaust & Genocide Institute

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