FASPE Fellowships at Auschwitz – For the Study of Professional Ethics

FASPE is an innovative program for students in professional schools designed to address contemporary ethical issues through a unique historical context. The Fellowships provide law, medical, seminary, journalism and business students a structured program of study that initially focuses on the role of their chosen professions in Nazi Germany and the Holocaust and uses that historic focus as a framework for the consideration of contemporary ethical issues. The various disciplines will explore topics such as The Rule of Law vs. “Lawlessness;” The Role and Limits of Bioethics, The Goals of Morality in the Face of Evil, The Responsibility to Report, and Ethical Limitations on Profit-Seeking. FASPE is under the auspices of the Museum of Jewish Heritage.  

Ten to fifteen students from each profession are chosen as Fellows each year through a competitive process that draws applicants from professional schools across the country. Following an introductory session in New York, each group of Fellows travels to Berlin, Krakow and Oświęcim (Auschwitz). In Germany and Poland, the in situ program looks at the role of the profession in the development and implementation of policies and programs that led to the Holocaust. FASPE is predicated upon both the potent symbolism of Auschwitz and the Fellows’ personal experience while in Germany and Poland to help the Fellows within each profession explore the power and potential of their profession along with the potential challenges they will face as professionals.  

FASPE programs cover all student expenses, including food, travel and lodging. Programs will be offered in 2010 to students attending schools of Law and Medicine; programs for the other professions will begin in 2011.    

The two-week program has the following structure: 

·        The group gathers at the Museum of Jewish Heritage in New York for a brief orientation that includes visiting the Museum’s exhibits, meeting with Holocaust survivors, and working with FASPE staff and guest scholars.

·        The first leg of the European portion is in Berlin, where the Fellows will have the opportunity to study the city’s historical and cultural sites, and also enjoy the vibrant social life of modern Berlin. Educational workshops will take place at the House of the Wannsee Conference, the site where, in 1942, representatives of State and Nazi Party agencies convened to discuss and coordinate plans for the “Final Solution.”

·        The Fellows then travel to Krakow, Poland, where they will explore the city’s rich Jewish, Catholic and Polish history. The Fellows will meet with Righteous among the Nations (rescuers) before departing for Oświęcim, the town the Germans called Auschwitz, where they will tour Auschwitz-Birkenau and work with the distinguished educational staff at the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum.

·        Back in Krakow for the final several days, the Fellows will focus exclusively on contemporary ethical issues facing their profession. Sessions will take place at Jagiellonian University, one of Europe’s oldest and most prestigious universities. 

To Apply:

Applications can be found at www.mjhnyc.org/teach_students_faspe.htm and are also available on the Student Portal. Applicants will be required to submit academic transcripts, the names of references, and a letter of recommendation, in addition to two essays. Completed applications must be received by December 15, 2009. The committee will inform all candidates of their decisions by January 31, 2010. All program costs, including travel, lodging and food are covered.

For more information, please review the “Overview of FASPE for Legal Students” on the Student Portal and visit www.mjhnyc.org/FASPE or email FASPE@mjhnyc.org.