The New Jersey Commission on Holocaust Education recently named the Center for Peace, Justice and Reconciliation (CPJR) at Bergen Community College as an official state Holocaust and Genocide Resource Center.
As part of a network of similar organizations under the commission, the CPJR has established a unique identity from other college-based resource centers with a mission rooted in the Armenian genocide – the first genocide of the 20th century. Through ongoing education initiatives like “teach the teacher” trainings at local schools accompanied by a CPJR-developed curriculum guide, the Center provides tools for educators to integrate genocide studies and conflict resolution into New Jersey classrooms.
“The Center establishes and supports connectedness, coherence and structure on campus, in the community and beyond,” Professor Thomas LaPointe, one of the CPJR’s five co-directors at Bergen, said. LaPointe, a professor of literature and composition, recently co-authored a book, “Hidden Genocides,” on topics such as the Armenian genocide.
Founded in 2009 at the main campus in Paramus, CPJR examines the issues of war, genocide and social justice by sponsoring awareness initiatives and special programming. The Center functions as the College’s on-campus research center offering electronic, print and new media resources for Bergen students, faculty and members of the community.
Bergen Community College (www.bergen.edu) based in Paramus is a public two-year coeducational college, enrolling nearly 17,000 students at locations in Paramus, the Philip J. Ciarco Jr. Learning Center in Hackensack and Bergen Community College at the Meadowlands in Lyndhurst. The College offers associate degree, certificate and continuing education programs in a variety of fields.