Announcing our Emerging Scholars Lecture Program with the Jewish Studies Program at Kent State University

In partnership with the Jewish Studies Program at Kent State University, we are soliciting applications from emerging scholars without tenure-track employment to deliver one of three lectures in Spring 2022. Selected applicants will also offer a guest lecture in a Jewish-studies course at one of our institutions (or offer a workshop for faculty). All lectures and talks will be virtual. We intend for this to be an annual and ongoing program. The theme for this year is “Jews around the World.” For more information and to apply, please click here.

Youngstown Area Jewish Film Festival

The Center for Judaic and Holocaust Studies is a proud annual sponsor of the Youngstown Area Jewish Film Festival.

For information about this year’s film festival (2021) and to purchase tickets, click here.
We will post promotional materials as soon as they are available.
All films are free to YSU students.

We are particularly excited to announce that Dr. Stephanie Pridgeon (Hispanic Studies, Bates College) will be joining us on October 11 for a screening of El Último Traje (The last suit, Argentina/Spain, 2017). Click here for more details.

Dr. Pridgeon will also be offering a guest lecture in Dr. Labendz’s Jewish History course on October 12.

CJHS Hiring Student Assistant

ATTENTION YSU STUDENTS! The CJHS is hiring a student assistant for academic year 2021-2022.

“The Student Program Assistant will support the Director of the Center for Judaic and Holocaust Studies in all areas of administration related to the daily operations of the Center. They will assist the Director in coordinating and publicizing extra-curricular programming and other administrative tasks, which may also relate to course-preparation and research needs.”

To apply, click here.

Dr. Adam Fuller speaks at Israeli Conference on “The Americanization of the Israeli Right”

Dr. Adam Fuller, a member of the CJHS Academic Advisory Committee and affiliated faculty member, spoke on the first panel of a conference organized by the Center for the Study of the United States at Tel Aviv University, “The Americanization of the Israeli Right.” Dr. Fuller’s panel, “Neo-Conservatism,” also featured Ilan Peleg (Lafayette University), Gayil Talshir (Hebrew University), and Yitzhak Mor (Hebrew University). Guy Ben-Porat (Ben Gurion University) moderated.

To find Dr. Fuller’s talk (the only in English), jump to minute 19:30.

Available Here: Book on the History of Jews in Youngstown

Thanks to the graciousness and generosity of the Ozer family, visitors to the CJHS website can now read and download this important work on the history of Jews in Youngstown.

Irving E. Ozer, Harry Alter, Lois Davidow, and Saul Friedman, These are the Names: The History of the Jews of Greater Youngstown, OH, 1865-1990 (I. E. Ozer, 1994).

Click here to be directed to the book.

Roundtable Featuring Dr. Labendz Accepted for the 2021 Association for Jewish Studies Conference.

“Meetings and Movements Across Cold-War Boundaries: Jewish People and Artifacts in Contact”

The political discourses of the Cold War, and the first decades of reflection upon it following the regime changes in Central Europe in 1989 and the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, portrayed a world divided by ideology and bifurcated by militarized borders. Our roundtable explores areas and moments of contact between Jews and Jewish communities across Cold-War boundaries, with the goal of deepening our understanding of the Cold War as a global phenomenon, and of shared cultural patterns across the divides. We look at the meetings of individuals and organizations, as well as the circulation of artifacts and capital. We explore how local, national, and bloc politics conditioned the varied initiatives and experiences of stakeholders, while widening our focus to appreciate what so many instances of cross-boundary “contact” can teach us about the Cold War, in this case, with specific attention to Jewish politics, culture, and life in the postwar world.

Moderator: Rebekah Klein-Pejsova, Purdue University

Discussants: Amy Fedeski, University of Virginia; Rachelle Grossman, Harvard University; Jacob Labendz, Youngstown State University; Sasha Senderovich, University of Washington; Jonathan Zisook, CUNY Graduate Center

Burdman Family Fellowship Announced

We thank and congratulate the Burdman family for establishing a lasting fellowship that will benefit YSU students for years into the future. We, at the CJHS, are particularly proud. Bonnie Deutsch Burdman is a longtime member of our Community Advisory Committee. She and her fellow committee members help the CJHS reach and serve the public in the greater Youngstown area. The CJHS owes its existence to the generosity of our donors.

Read more, here.

“The YSU Foundation received a $250,000 gift to create a fellowship for the James P. Tressel Institute for Leadership and Teamwork at Youngstown State University.

The contribution was made by Lee and Bonnie Burdman and their children, Korey, Taylor and Lexi.

The Burdman Family Fellowship will provide a financial literacy peer mentor for undergraduate and graduate students at YSU. Financial literacy is one of the seven badges students earn, leading them to a certificate for completing the Tressel Institute program. Lee and Bonnie were also among the leading benefactors for establishing the James P. Tressel Endowed Chair in Leadership at YSU in January.

The program is designed to prepare and empower YSU students to direct organizations and guide individuals to succeed in their given endeavors.”
Mahoning Matters. Read more here.

Congratulations to Dr. Nancy Wagner!

Nancy Wagner headshot

We extend our heartfelt congratulations to Dr. Nancy Wagner on being named the inaugural President James Tressel Endowed Chair in Leadership at Youngstown State University. Dr. Wagner is a contributing member of the CJHS’s Academic Advisory Committee and an affiliated faculty member. She as led study abroad trips to Israel and coordinated student experiences at both Galilee Medical Center and Hadassah Medical Center in Israel.

Dr. Wagner directs the Centofanti School of Nursing, where she is a professor.

Read more here, via WKBN.


From The Jewish Journal 18, no. 8 (August 2021/Av-Elul 5781)

In Memoriam: Dr. Michael Jerryson

The CJHS joins with the rest of the YSU community in mourning the passing of Dr. Michael Jerryson. Michael was a beloved colleague, a gifted and popular teacher, and a superb researcher and writer. He embodied the conviction that scholars have an important role to play in society. We will miss him and will strive to honor his memory.

You can read more about Michael on his website: www.michaeljerryson.com.

Following a private burial, a service open to all will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, July 17 at Foxfield Preserve, 9877 Alabama Ave. SW, Wilmot, OH 44689. Unvaccinated guests are asked to wear masks and adhere to social distancing guidelines.

In lieu of flowers the family requests that memorial contributions be sent to Venmo account @InMemory-ofMichael.

Read this touching obituary to learn more about Michael and his work.

Jess Hardin at Mahoning Matters published this touching remembrance, which focuses on reflections by Michael’s colleagues and students. Thank you.

Youngstown State University circulated this obituary: