Penn State Harrisburg

Kurt Moses named honorary Penn State alum

Kurt Moses

Kurt Moses


Long-time Penn State Harrisburg champion, Holocaust survivor, author, and lecturer Kurt Moses was named an honorary alumnus by the Penn State Alumni Association at a recognition ceremony June 3 at University Park.

One of five recipients of the award this year, Moses’ first-hand accounts of his experiences at Auschwitz, Westerbork and Terezin concentration camps have become powerful messages for more than 20 years on campus at Penn State Harrisburg and University Park. Encouraged long ago by his rabbi to share his story, Moses has spoken to standing-room-only crowds of several hundred students. His message is simple – the current generation is responsible for ensuring something like the Holocaust never happens again.

Penn State Harrisburg honored Moses and his wife, Doris, in 2009 for their lifelong dedication to Holocaust education and Jewish studies. Moses’ vision helped bring to completion the college’s Schwab Family Holocaust Reading Room—a place of contemplation and study, accessible to the public, that features an art gallery and taped oral histories of survivors and liberators.

“Kurt’s commitment to education and to the University has been exemplary,” said Penn State Harrisburg Chancellor Mukund Kulkarni. “We are grateful for his dedication to educating several generations of students about the Holocaust, and we are pleased that he has been recognized as an honorary alumnus in 2011.”

The Penn State Alumni Association has given the Honorary Alumni Award since 1973 to recognize individuals who, while not graduates of Penn State, have significantly worked toward bettering the University. Since the honor was established, nearly 100 individuals have received Honorary Alumni status. Recipients are granted a life membership in the Penn State Alumni Association.

James C. Byerly, former chair of the Penn State Harrisburg Board of Advisers, was named honorary alum in 2010. Other notable honorary alumni include former Penn State President H. Bryce Jordan, Congressman John P. Murtha, Football Coach Joe Paterno, and Sculptor Heinz Warneke, creator of the famous Nittany Lion statue.