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Panel Discussion Presents the Experience of Jewish Holocaust Survivors and Émigrés in ‘Coming to America’

(PDF) (DOC) (JPG)April 3, 2018

MAHWAH, N.J. –The Gross Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies of Ramapo College of New Jersey in collaboration with the Jewish Historical Society of North Jersey will present a panel discussion, “Coming to America: Victims of the Shoah and Emigres from the Former Soviet Union and Middle East. ” It will take place on Sunday, April 22 at 10 a.m. at Temple Beth Sholom in Fair Lawn, New Jersey (40-25 Fair Lawn Avenue) and feature the personal experiences of Sally Whitmore, Bella Miller, Bella Lisny and Rachel Harari.

The discussion will be moderated by Dr. Michael Riff, director of the Gross Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies. Admission is free and open to the community. Refreshments will be served and kashrut observed. Please RSVP to 201-300-6590 or

Northern New Jersey, along with many communities across the nation has experienced successive waves of Jewish immigration at least since the middle of the 19th century. While a number of Sephardic Jews settled in the state before the revolution, the first major spurt of settlement occurred with the influx of German and other Central European Jews in the 1840s. Joining them from 1880s onward were increasing numbers of Jews from Eastern Europe escaping the persecution in their native countries and seeking a better life.

Beginning with Jews from Germany, the advent of Nazism and fascism in Europe during the 1930s led to the next wave that continued after World War II with the resettlement of survivors of the Holocaust in the late 1940s and 1950s. Following the Israeli War of Independence and the persecution of the Jews in the Middle East, their brethren from places such as Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, and North Africa soon joined them. The most recent wave of Jews has come from the former Soviet Union. It began with the relaxation of emigration restrictions under communist rule and continued after the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1993.

The focus the program is the post-war period in which new resettlement and suburbanization coincided to make for new conditions on all sides for adaptation and integration.

For information on this event or to request disability-related accommodations for this event, please contact or call 201-684-7409.


About Ramapo College

Ramapo College of New Jersey is the state’s premier public liberal arts college and is committed to academic excellence through interdisciplinary and experiential learning, and international and intercultural understanding. The comprehensive college is situated among the beautiful Ramapo Mountains, is within commuting distance to New York City, was named one of the 50 Most Beautiful College Campuses in America by CondeNast Traveler, and boasts the best on-campus housing in New Jersey per

Ramapo College provides its students with individualized attention, mentorship, and supports; hands-on learning; and a range of opportunities for service and leadership development. Its graduation and retention rates exceed national averages and it places approximately 1,000 students per year in internships in New York City. The College is ranked #1 among New Jersey public institutions by College Choice; is recognized as the state’s top college on the list of Best Disability Schools by Great Value Colleges; is designated a “Military Friendly College” in Victoria Media’s Guide to Military Friendly Schools; and is recognized as a top college by U.S. News & World Report, Kiplinger’s, Princeton Review and Money magazine, among others.  

Ramapo College’s over 40,000 alumni are the confident, intellectually curious, self-aware, and humble people who are highly sought after and who make a positive impact at local, national, and global levels.  Ramapo College is distinguished as a Career Development College of Distinction by Every student at Ramapo is enrolled in its unique and award winning Pathways Program which equips and empowers students, across the continuum of their academic career, to secure internships, pursue graduate/professional school, and/or enter the job market. 

Established in 1969, Ramapo College offers bachelor’s degrees in the arts, business, data science, humanities, social sciences and the sciences, as well as in professional studies, which include business, education, nursing and social work. In addition, the College offers courses leading to teacher certification at the elementary and secondary levels, and offers graduate programs leading to master’s degrees in Accounting, Applied Mathematics, Business Administration, Contemporary Instructional Design, Computer Science, Creative Music Technology, Data Science, Educational Leadership, Nursing, Social Work and Special Education, as well as a Doctor of Nursing Practice.


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