Smart Talk: Young Pennsylvanians don’t know much about the Holocaust and genocides

Penn State initiative aims to provide education to K-12 students

  • Scott LaMar
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Airdate: 01/11/21

The Holocaust, Armenia, Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur – all genocides that have occurred over the past century. Genocide is defined as the deliberate killing of a large number of people from a particular nation or ethnic group with the aim of destroying that nation or group.

Even though millions of people were murdered just because of their religious, ethnic or racial backgrounds, many Americans – especially younger – Americans don’t know many of the basic facts about what have to be considered some of the greatest tragedies in human history.

For example, a survey conducted by the PEW Research Center last year found that only 38% of American teenagers knew that six million Jews died in the Holocaust.

Penn State University is working with the Pennsylvania Department of Education and other non-profit organizations on the Holocaust, Genocide, and Human Rights Initiative to educate students about the events.

Appearing on Monday’s Smart Talk to provide details are Neil Leifert, Lecturer in History and Director of the Center for Holocaust and Jewish Studies, Penn State Harrisburg, Eliyana Adler, Associate Professor in History and Holocaust Scholar for the Holocaust, Genocide and Human Rights Education Initiative at Penn State University and Boaz Dvir, assistant professor in the Bellisario College and Director of the Holocaust, Genocide and Human Rights Education Initiative at Penn State University.

New air filtration technology that can eliminate COVID

Also on the program, the COVID-19 pandemic has spawned technology to help mitigate the virus.

LifeAire Systems developed an air filtration system that can kill infectious airborne pathogens, including the coronavirus, and the company also applied this technology to create portable, rapid decontamination units for N95 masks that kill COVID-19 and other pathogens within all layers of the mask.

Joining us on Smart Talk to discuss the new technology are Kathryn C. Worrilow, CEO and Founder LifeAire Systems, Laura Eppler, Chief Marketing officer, Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania, and Doug Engler, Lehigh Valley Regional Manager, Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania.

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