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Adjunct Professor Lands Competitive Fellowship as Holocaust Scholar

Jan. 7, 2009 -- Jaye Houston, an adjunct faculty member at Mount St. Mary's Weekend College, has been awarded a fellowship to attend the 2009 Jack and Anita Hess Seminar for Faculty: The Holocaust and Other Genocides: Historical Contexts, Legal Issues, and Ethical Dilemmas. The seminar was to be held the first week of January at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C.

Houston was selected as one of 20 Holocaust and genocide scholars from an international list of applicants.

The seminar will focus on teaching comparative genocides, with historical contexts, ethical dilemmas and legal issues related to genocides of the 20th century, and the first genocide of the 21st century, Darfur.

Faculty and students at Mount St. Mary's Weekend College have had a particular interest in teaching and learning about the Holocaust for many years. Almost a decade ago the College sponsored a travel/study course in which two faculty members took 30 students to the Holocaust Museum and then to historical sites in Prague, Poland, and Germany. In addition, Fred Simonelli, a Mount St. Mary's Weekend College faculty member who was one of the faculty leaders of the Holocaust trip, was invited by the State of Israel to conduct research at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial, and is currently writing a book on the American Catholic Church during the years of the Holocaust.

Houston's doctoral dissertation focused on Generations, Legacy and the Holocaust, and several years ago she taught her first Holocaust related course to Weekend College students titled: "Christianity in a Post-Holocaust World." She has continued to teach courses on the Holocaust at The Mount and is currently preparing for her Spring course, "Religions, Genocides, and Human Rights."

"The Weekend College students' response to the Holocaust course was phenomenal as most of them knew little of the connection between religion and genocide," Houston says. "My goal in all the courses I teach is to educate students about the various ways humanity can be inhumane to humanity."

"We are very fortunate to attract a first-rate faculty of teachers-scholars to The Weekend College," Merrill Rodin, Dean of The Weekend College said. "Drs. Houston and Simonelli are just two examples of Mount St. Mary's Weekend College faculty who strive to expand the minds of our adult students in so many interesting and compelling areas."

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