Sarah’s Key

lindsey_stefanThe potential reader should be prepared for Sarah’s Key. While reading, you might like to keep a picture of cuddly puppies nearby. Maybe you would prefer a strong drink. It may move you to check on your sleeping children again or it might just make you really angry. Here’s why – while this novel by Tatiana de Rosnay is a work of fiction, it is based on actual events. These actual events are sure to stir up some very actual emotions.

The book follows two parallel characters – Sarah, a young girl living in Paris in 1942, and Julia, an American journalist living in Paris in 2002. Julia is assigned an article about the commemoration of Vel’d’Hiv, the 1942 roundup of French Jews by French police forces. As Julia researches this little-known atrocity, Sarah is living it. Sarah and her parents are taken early one morning and herded into a local arena, where they are contained for day without food or water. Sarah worries not only about what will happen to herself and her parents, but also for her brother, who she left behind in what she thought was a safe hiding place. After a hellish few days, they are taken on to a place even more inhumane and terrifying.

Julia is appalled by the French indifference to their history. She finds herself increasingly drawn to the story of the Vel’d’Hiv victims, putting her quest for answers above all else, even her own family. “I had always been acutely aware that everything I had read about the roundup had been true. And yet, on that hot spring day, as I stood looking at the grave, it hit me. The whole reality of it hit me. And I knew that I would no longer rest, no longer be at peace, until I found out precisely what had become of Sarah Starzynski.”When she discovers a connection between her family and Sarah, Julia must reevaluate what she thought about her family, her commitments, and herself.

Sarah’s Key is a compelling novel. Even though Julia’s research discloses early in the novel what happens at Vel’d’Hiv, her determination to find out what happened to Sarah and her family all those years ago will keep the reader turning pages. DeRosnay is a skilled and sensitive writer. She is dealing with a terrible subject and could have easily vilified some and elevated others. But DeRosnay knows that it is not so simple – during times of great horror and crisis, what lengths will any of us go to in order to survive? What scars do those choices leave us with? Sarah’s Key is a beautifully written book dealing with the darkest moments of humanity during World War II and in our present day.

Sarah’s Key

lindsey_stefanThe potential reader should be prepared for Sarah’s Key. While reading, you might like to keep a picture of cuddly puppies nearby. Maybe you would prefer a strong drink. It may move you to check on your sleeping children again or it might just make you really angry. Here’s why – while this novel by Tatiana de Rosnay is a work of fiction, it is based on actual events. These actual events are sure to stir up some very actual emotions.

The book follows two parallel characters – Sarah, a young girl living in Paris in 1942, and Julia, an American journalist living in Paris in 2002. Julia is assigned an article about the commemoration of Vel’d’Hiv, the 1942 roundup of French Jews by French police forces. As Julia researches this little-known atrocity, Sarah is living it. Sarah and her parents are taken early one morning and herded into a local arena, where they are contained for day without food or water. Sarah worries not only about what will happen to herself and her parents, but also for her brother, who she left behind in what she thought was a safe hiding place. After a hellish few days, they are taken on to a place even more inhumane and terrifying.

Julia is appalled by the French indifference to their history. She finds herself increasingly drawn to the story of the Vel’d’Hiv victims, putting her quest for answers above all else, even her own family. “I had always been acutely aware that everything I had read about the roundup had been true. And yet, on that hot spring day, as I stood looking at the grave, it hit me. The whole reality of it hit me. And I knew that I would no longer rest, no longer be at peace, until I found out precisely what had become of Sarah Starzynski.”When she discovers a connection between her family and Sarah, Julia must reevaluate what she thought about her family, her commitments, and herself.

Sarah’s Key is a compelling novel. Even though Julia’s research discloses early in the novel what happens at Vel’d’Hiv, her determination to find out what happened to Sarah and her family all those years ago will keep the reader turning pages. DeRosnay is a skilled and sensitive writer. She is dealing with a terrible subject and could have easily vilified some and elevated others. But DeRosnay knows that it is not so simple – during times of great horror and crisis, what lengths will any of us go to in order to survive? What scars do those choices leave us with? Sarah’s Key is a beautifully written book dealing with the darkest moments of humanity during World War II and in our present day.

Putting an End to Democrat Control of Congress

Have we had enough yet or are we gluttons for punishment?  Isn’t it time to put an end to the Democratic controlled Congress approach to fixing the economy, increasing spending, increasing debt, increasing taxes, high unemployment rate with no job growth in sight, and a new healthcare plan which most people did not want?

One of the route causes of the above problem issues is our current District 6 Congressman, Frank Pallone.  In fact, he even views them as feathers in his hat for a job well done.  The people of District 6 as well as the rest of the country have reached the point to now say, “Enough is Enough.”  It is time for a significant change in the way that our 6th District, our state, and our country is being run by putting new people in those jobs who are ready, willing and able to listen to the people and what they want, rather than the other way around.  That time is almost at hand and we have just such a person in Anna Little who is running against Pallone for our District 6 Congressional seat on November 2nd.  She knows of the problems facing our state and our country and she knows the importance of listening to the people and doing what the people want.

Please join with me in voting for Anna Little for Congress on Nov. 2nd to help bring our economy and our country back.

Bill Thorne

Ocean Twp., NJ

 

Putting an End to Democrat Control of Congress

Have we had enough yet or are we gluttons for punishment?  Isn’t it time to put an end to the Democratic controlled Congress approach to fixing the economy, increasing spending, increasing debt, increasing taxes, high unemployment rate with no job growth in sight, and a new healthcare plan which most people did not want?

One of the route causes of the above problem issues is our current District 6 Congressman, Frank Pallone.  In fact, he even views them as feathers in his hat for a job well done.  The people of District 6 as well as the rest of the country have reached the point to now say, “Enough is Enough.”  It is time for a significant change in the way that our 6th District, our state, and our country is being run by putting new people in those jobs who are ready, willing and able to listen to the people and what they want, rather than the other way around.  That time is almost at hand and we have just such a person in Anna Little who is running against Pallone for our District 6 Congressional seat on November 2nd.  She knows of the problems facing our state and our country and she knows the importance of listening to the people and doing what the people want.

Please join with me in voting for Anna Little for Congress on Nov. 2nd to help bring our economy and our country back.

Bill Thorne

Ocean Twp., NJ

 

Pallone Turns His Back On America

Congress leaves Washington without voting to extend the Bush tax cuts. Who was responsible for casting the deciding vote, none other than Congressman of CD6, Frank Pallone, who by the way mimicked Nancy Pelosi’s vote once again!

With our economy being in the fragile state it’s in, this is the worst possible news for America. What this means for us is this, the two major tax-cutting bills, the Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001, and the Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003 will be phased out come December 31st.  According to Forbes Magazine, these two laws cut taxes across the board for earned income, long-term capital gains and dividends. The law also expands the child tax credit, eliminates the “marriage penalty” by giving couples filing jointly twice the deduction, and many taxpayers will lose as much as 80% of their itemized deductions depending on their income. Democrats like Frank Pallone would like us to believe that only the top two brackets will face higher taxes should the Bush cuts laps, but this couldn’t be further from the truth! The reality is,   rates will go up for everyone including the lower and middle class, bringing greater havoc to our economy.  This is Frank Pallone’s agenda and it proves he is dangerous for America.

In a September 30th article titled, Little: Pallone Cast Deciding Vote To Adjourn, Before Acting To Prevent Massive Tax Hike, Republican Congressional challenger Anna Little, sharply criticized her opponent, Frank Pallone. She states, “Today Frank Pallone showed why it’s time for him to leave Congress. With an economy in the ruts, his deciding vote will lead to continued uncertainty about the nation’s job creators, and will make job creation that much more difficult in the weeks and months to come.”

It is time for Americans to take a stand!  The voters of Congressional District 6 should ask themselves; do we want more of Frank Pallone’s economic progressive agenda or do we want a candidate who knows fiscal responsibility and truly cares about Americans? On November 2nd we must get out the vote for Anna Little. The only way to rid ourselves of the existing scourge is to vote them out of office!  This is the power granted all Americans by the Constitution. Unlike the Healthcare Bill, it is a relatively short document but it speaks volumes. This is the wonderful, democratic process we live by, WE THE PEOPLE…

God Bless America!

 

Sincerely yours

Susan Christopher

Asbury Park, N.J.

Pallone Turns His Back On America

Congress leaves Washington without voting to extend the Bush tax cuts. Who was responsible for casting the deciding vote, none other than Congressman of CD6, Frank Pallone, who by the way mimicked Nancy Pelosi’s vote once again!

With our economy being in the fragile state it’s in, this is the worst possible news for America. What this means for us is this, the two major tax-cutting bills, the Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001, and the Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003 will be phased out come December 31st.  According to Forbes Magazine, these two laws cut taxes across the board for earned income, long-term capital gains and dividends. The law also expands the child tax credit, eliminates the “marriage penalty” by giving couples filing jointly twice the deduction, and many taxpayers will lose as much as 80% of their itemized deductions depending on their income. Democrats like Frank Pallone would like us to believe that only the top two brackets will face higher taxes should the Bush cuts laps, but this couldn’t be further from the truth! The reality is,   rates will go up for everyone including the lower and middle class, bringing greater havoc to our economy.  This is Frank Pallone’s agenda and it proves he is dangerous for America.

In a September 30th article titled, Little: Pallone Cast Deciding Vote To Adjourn, Before Acting To Prevent Massive Tax Hike, Republican Congressional challenger Anna Little, sharply criticized her opponent, Frank Pallone. She states, “Today Frank Pallone showed why it’s time for him to leave Congress. With an economy in the ruts, his deciding vote will lead to continued uncertainty about the nation’s job creators, and will make job creation that much more difficult in the weeks and months to come.”

It is time for Americans to take a stand!  The voters of Congressional District 6 should ask themselves; do we want more of Frank Pallone’s economic progressive agenda or do we want a candidate who knows fiscal responsibility and truly cares about Americans? On November 2nd we must get out the vote for Anna Little. The only way to rid ourselves of the existing scourge is to vote them out of office!  This is the power granted all Americans by the Constitution. Unlike the Healthcare Bill, it is a relatively short document but it speaks volumes. This is the wonderful, democratic process we live by, WE THE PEOPLE…

God Bless America!

 

Sincerely yours

Susan Christopher

Asbury Park, N.J.

Attacking Bad Teachers

On Sep 28, I attended Governor Chris Christie’s townhall meeting in Old Bridge, focused on his proposals for education reform. It’s the first time I go to a townhall organized by someone I support. The ones I’ve attended before were organized by Democrats and resulted in a lot of frustrated attendees, vociferations, protests and so on, due to the extreme views of the speakers. Rush Holt even decided that “townhalls have a negative connotation”, without thinking that maybe his ideas have negative implications. So in a way I expected a lot of discontent union members to show up, especially in Democratic Old Bridge from Democratic Middlesex County. To my surprise, most of the people inside the packed room (a few hundred peoples) were supporting the Christie Reform Agenda, were enthusiastic about his proposals, and have him many rounds of standing ovations.

The Governor started kinda like an E! channel show, with about five minutes dedicated to movie reviews. He talked about The Cartel, but especially about the newly released Waiting for Superman. There’s no coincidence, as these movies are about failed public school systems. So he went straight to the topic of the day – education. And today he didn’t speak about compensation, benefits, guaranteed pay raises or (lack of) contributions to health insurance, but about one thing: teacher performance.

His first example, as it relates to his recent joint appearance with Mayor Booker of Newark and CEO Mark Zuckerberg (or Zuckerman as Booker repeatedly called him) of Facebook, was about the abysmal Newark school system. Over there, only 1 in 2 children graduate from high school. You can say this is bad enough. But 95% of those students who decide to go to college need remedial education to bring them up to the level of college admission knowledge! What this means is that high school tests are rigged so those teachers can make themselves look good and keep their jobs!

The problem with public (unionized) education in NJ (and other states) is that it doesn’t take into account AT ALL teachers’ performance. The system doesn’t reward good teachers and punish bad teachers. It just maintains a status quo where everyone has a guaranteed job, a guaranteed salary, a guaranteed pay raise. Imagine another enterprise, a private company, where at the end of the year, the boss comes to one of the worst employees and says “Congrats for surviving one more year! Here’s your bonus and your 5% raise for next year!”. Does anyone see that possible?? Well, it’s the reality of unionized education, where the only test you have to pass in order to keep your job and get a raise is “to breathe”. That’s all you have to do!

Chris Christie said “I don’t attack teachers. I attack BAD teacher”. And later: “I don’t bash teachers, I bash stubborn, self-interested unions”. It’s the unions that have created the so called “rubber rooms” in New York City. A rubber room is a room where the worst teachers are sent to just do nothing… watch TV, read newspapers, play cards, while getting paid full salary and benefits. Just because it’s so hard and expensive to fire them that it’s more economically feasible to pay them full salary to do nothing! That’s the reality of public education.

The Governor said the NJ Legislature needs to act on several bills. One is about prohibiting using seniority as a basis for deciding compensation. It goes back to the previous example. Right now, salaries, benefits and pay raises are obtained automatically, simply by breathing for one more year. It doesn’t matter if you’re the best or the worst teacher, you get the same. I don’t think it’s even necessary to ask what’s then the incentive to be a good teacher?? Christie’s proposal is very simple: compensation should be based only on merit. Good teachers get paid more, and bad teachers get paid less or get FIRED. Also, he suggested that additional degrees shouldn’t be a criteria for boosting a salary, as a lot of teachers get free Masters’ degrees (I mean, paid by the taxpayers) in non-related subjects, just to get a pay increase.

Chris Christie’s 2nd legislative proposal is about tenure. The way tenure is used now in public education is illogical. Tenure was introduced in higher education in order to stimulate professors to be free thinkers and to engage in creative debate, without fearing for their job. But it’s been adopted by the public education system as a synonym for “job guarantee”. 3rd grade teachers don’t engage in phylosophical debates, the hide behind tenure as an excuse for their performance. Imagine the following discussion a principal can have with a parent: “Your daughter’s 3rd grade teacher is really bad, but you know we can’t fire her. Lucky us, we got more funding from the state, so we’re gonna give her a pay raise this year, and try to talk to her into bettering herself. And who knows, maybe next year she’ll do a better job”. The thing is that the daughter of that parent has only one year in 3rd grade. And that more money won’t make that teacher better. But this is the reality of our public, unionized education.

I think teachers should be like eveybody else working in this country: you do your job well, you keep it. You do a bad job, you get fired. Chris Christie’s proposal wasn’t that common sense (or “radical”, as the Democrats would call it), he just proposed that tenure should be granted or revoked based on teacher performance. I’m sure it would still be very hard to revoke someone’s tenure, but it’s a small step forward.

After his speech, the Governor said he’s ready for “the fun part of the program, the one most likely to get on YouTube”: questions from the public. He responded pretty much on point to all of them, as they were about common sense issues like education (mostly) or public employees. He seemed a little bit upset only when the issues of accrued sick time was raised. In case you didn’t know, public employees are allowed a certain amount of sick days per year, which accrue unlimited over their career, and when you retire you get PAID for all those unused sick days. Sounds sick, doesn’t it??? The Governor errupted saying that “if after 20 years on the job you haven’t used any sick days, you shouldn’t asked to be paid for that, you should go to church, get on your knees, and thank God for your good health”. But really, can anyone find any similar arrangement in any other American enterprise? There were people who retired this year and were paid by the State (meaning us, taxpayers), $900,000 (Nine Hundred Thousand Dollars) in accrued sick time. This makes ME sick! The best the Governor could do was to cap those payments at $15k/person. Still a lot, but the best you can achieve with a Democratic legislature driven by special interest groups (read: Unions).

Someone asked about RGGI, which is the local equivalent of Cap & Trade, used by several liberal Northeast states. I was looking forward to hearing the Governor’s opinion about this, and can’t say I was very satisfied. He said he’s a bit opposed to it, because big industrial states like Pennsylvania are not participating, so the program is totally ineffective and even more, creates higher costs of doing business in NJ, while Pennsylvania can attract more of those businesses away from NJ. But Chris Christie didn’t specifically address the fact that it costs small businesses a lot of money and ultimately we, the citizens of NJ, have to pay all those costs associated with Tax&Trade.

Finally, Chris Christie’s best quote about Democrats came as related to a question about vouchers and charter schools: “They don’t like choice, because it allows people to walk away from failures”. This is true about so many aspects about our life. Democrats would like to mandate and regulate everything (what to eat, what car to drive, what light bulbs to use, etc), because people won’t “choose” something they don’t like unless they’re forced to or left with no other choice.

Chris Fotache
Middletown, NJ

Attacking Bad Teachers

On Sep 28, I attended Governor Chris Christie’s townhall meeting in Old Bridge, focused on his proposals for education reform. It’s the first time I go to a townhall organized by someone I support. The ones I’ve attended before were organized by Democrats and resulted in a lot of frustrated attendees, vociferations, protests and so on, due to the extreme views of the speakers. Rush Holt even decided that “townhalls have a negative connotation”, without thinking that maybe his ideas have negative implications. So in a way I expected a lot of discontent union members to show up, especially in Democratic Old Bridge from Democratic Middlesex County. To my surprise, most of the people inside the packed room (a few hundred peoples) were supporting the Christie Reform Agenda, were enthusiastic about his proposals, and have him many rounds of standing ovations.

The Governor started kinda like an E! channel show, with about five minutes dedicated to movie reviews. He talked about The Cartel, but especially about the newly released Waiting for Superman. There’s no coincidence, as these movies are about failed public school systems. So he went straight to the topic of the day – education. And today he didn’t speak about compensation, benefits, guaranteed pay raises or (lack of) contributions to health insurance, but about one thing: teacher performance.

His first example, as it relates to his recent joint appearance with Mayor Booker of Newark and CEO Mark Zuckerberg (or Zuckerman as Booker repeatedly called him) of Facebook, was about the abysmal Newark school system. Over there, only 1 in 2 children graduate from high school. You can say this is bad enough. But 95% of those students who decide to go to college need remedial education to bring them up to the level of college admission knowledge! What this means is that high school tests are rigged so those teachers can make themselves look good and keep their jobs!

The problem with public (unionized) education in NJ (and other states) is that it doesn’t take into account AT ALL teachers’ performance. The system doesn’t reward good teachers and punish bad teachers. It just maintains a status quo where everyone has a guaranteed job, a guaranteed salary, a guaranteed pay raise. Imagine another enterprise, a private company, where at the end of the year, the boss comes to one of the worst employees and says “Congrats for surviving one more year! Here’s your bonus and your 5% raise for next year!”. Does anyone see that possible?? Well, it’s the reality of unionized education, where the only test you have to pass in order to keep your job and get a raise is “to breathe”. That’s all you have to do!

Chris Christie said “I don’t attack teachers. I attack BAD teacher”. And later: “I don’t bash teachers, I bash stubborn, self-interested unions”. It’s the unions that have created the so called “rubber rooms” in New York City. A rubber room is a room where the worst teachers are sent to just do nothing… watch TV, read newspapers, play cards, while getting paid full salary and benefits. Just because it’s so hard and expensive to fire them that it’s more economically feasible to pay them full salary to do nothing! That’s the reality of public education.

The Governor said the NJ Legislature needs to act on several bills. One is about prohibiting using seniority as a basis for deciding compensation. It goes back to the previous example. Right now, salaries, benefits and pay raises are obtained automatically, simply by breathing for one more year. It doesn’t matter if you’re the best or the worst teacher, you get the same. I don’t think it’s even necessary to ask what’s then the incentive to be a good teacher?? Christie’s proposal is very simple: compensation should be based only on merit. Good teachers get paid more, and bad teachers get paid less or get FIRED. Also, he suggested that additional degrees shouldn’t be a criteria for boosting a salary, as a lot of teachers get free Masters’ degrees (I mean, paid by the taxpayers) in non-related subjects, just to get a pay increase.

Chris Christie’s 2nd legislative proposal is about tenure. The way tenure is used now in public education is illogical. Tenure was introduced in higher education in order to stimulate professors to be free thinkers and to engage in creative debate, without fearing for their job. But it’s been adopted by the public education system as a synonym for “job guarantee”. 3rd grade teachers don’t engage in phylosophical debates, the hide behind tenure as an excuse for their performance. Imagine the following discussion a principal can have with a parent: “Your daughter’s 3rd grade teacher is really bad, but you know we can’t fire her. Lucky us, we got more funding from the state, so we’re gonna give her a pay raise this year, and try to talk to her into bettering herself. And who knows, maybe next year she’ll do a better job”. The thing is that the daughter of that parent has only one year in 3rd grade. And that more money won’t make that teacher better. But this is the reality of our public, unionized education.

I think teachers should be like eveybody else working in this country: you do your job well, you keep it. You do a bad job, you get fired. Chris Christie’s proposal wasn’t that common sense (or “radical”, as the Democrats would call it), he just proposed that tenure should be granted or revoked based on teacher performance. I’m sure it would still be very hard to revoke someone’s tenure, but it’s a small step forward.

After his speech, the Governor said he’s ready for “the fun part of the program, the one most likely to get on YouTube”: questions from the public. He responded pretty much on point to all of them, as they were about common sense issues like education (mostly) or public employees. He seemed a little bit upset only when the issues of accrued sick time was raised. In case you didn’t know, public employees are allowed a certain amount of sick days per year, which accrue unlimited over their career, and when you retire you get PAID for all those unused sick days. Sounds sick, doesn’t it??? The Governor errupted saying that “if after 20 years on the job you haven’t used any sick days, you shouldn’t asked to be paid for that, you should go to church, get on your knees, and thank God for your good health”. But really, can anyone find any similar arrangement in any other American enterprise? There were people who retired this year and were paid by the State (meaning us, taxpayers), $900,000 (Nine Hundred Thousand Dollars) in accrued sick time. This makes ME sick! The best the Governor could do was to cap those payments at $15k/person. Still a lot, but the best you can achieve with a Democratic legislature driven by special interest groups (read: Unions).

Someone asked about RGGI, which is the local equivalent of Cap & Trade, used by several liberal Northeast states. I was looking forward to hearing the Governor’s opinion about this, and can’t say I was very satisfied. He said he’s a bit opposed to it, because big industrial states like Pennsylvania are not participating, so the program is totally ineffective and even more, creates higher costs of doing business in NJ, while Pennsylvania can attract more of those businesses away from NJ. But Chris Christie didn’t specifically address the fact that it costs small businesses a lot of money and ultimately we, the citizens of NJ, have to pay all those costs associated with Tax&Trade.

Finally, Chris Christie’s best quote about Democrats came as related to a question about vouchers and charter schools: “They don’t like choice, because it allows people to walk away from failures”. This is true about so many aspects about our life. Democrats would like to mandate and regulate everything (what to eat, what car to drive, what light bulbs to use, etc), because people won’t “choose” something they don’t like unless they’re forced to or left with no other choice.

Chris Fotache
Middletown, NJ

New Jersey Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial Foundation to Host Public Forum

Teachers Encouraged to Attend – Professional Development Hours Offered

HOLMDEL, NJ – On Friday, October 15, 2010 from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., the New Jersey Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial Foundation will host the 12th annual interdisciplinary forum at the Robert B. Meyner Reception Center in Holmdel. The Forum includes three panel discussions, a luncheon with keynote speaker, and a visit to the Memorial and Museum.  The Vietnam Era Museum & Educational Center is a registered Professional Development Provider with the NJ Department of Education.  Participating teachers may receive five Professional Development hours for full day attendance.  Pre-registration is required.

This year’s theme is “Now and Then:  Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan.”  Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan share similarities — insurgency, unknown enemies and difficult environmental conditions, but much has changed from one conflict to the next.  The Forum will highlight the changing trends of the people who served in terms of their gender, generation, and voluntary or involuntary participation.  It will also provide participants with experience-based educational tools, which will help develop comparisons between the past and present.  The panels will consist of three individuals who will share their own experiences and knowledge while encouraging audience participation.

Marianna P. Sullivan of Rydal, PA, is the keynote speaker.  Sullivan received her Ph.D. in Foreign Affairs from the University of Virginia and is Emeritus Professor of Political Science and International Studies at The College of New Jersey (TCNJ) where she has taught courses in United States Foreign Policy, the Vietnam War, International Studies and European Politics.

For more information or to register call (732) 335-0033 or visit our website at www.njvvmf.org.  Discounted participant fee of $60 remains through October 6th. After October 6th, the fee is $70.  For NJ Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial Foundation members, the price is $50. Breakfast and lunch are included.

The Memorial and Museum are located off exit 116 of the Garden State Parkway.  The Museum is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.  The Memorial is open 24 hours, 7 days.

New Jersey Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial Foundation to Host Public Forum

Teachers Encouraged to Attend – Professional Development Hours Offered

HOLMDEL, NJ – On Friday, October 15, 2010 from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., the New Jersey Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial Foundation will host the 12th annual interdisciplinary forum at the Robert B. Meyner Reception Center in Holmdel. The Forum includes three panel discussions, a luncheon with keynote speaker, and a visit to the Memorial and Museum.  The Vietnam Era Museum & Educational Center is a registered Professional Development Provider with the NJ Department of Education.  Participating teachers may receive five Professional Development hours for full day attendance.  Pre-registration is required.

This year’s theme is “Now and Then:  Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan.”  Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan share similarities — insurgency, unknown enemies and difficult environmental conditions, but much has changed from one conflict to the next.  The Forum will highlight the changing trends of the people who served in terms of their gender, generation, and voluntary or involuntary participation.  It will also provide participants with experience-based educational tools, which will help develop comparisons between the past and present.  The panels will consist of three individuals who will share their own experiences and knowledge while encouraging audience participation.

Marianna P. Sullivan of Rydal, PA, is the keynote speaker.  Sullivan received her Ph.D. in Foreign Affairs from the University of Virginia and is Emeritus Professor of Political Science and International Studies at The College of New Jersey (TCNJ) where she has taught courses in United States Foreign Policy, the Vietnam War, International Studies and European Politics.

For more information or to register call (732) 335-0033 or visit our website at www.njvvmf.org.  Discounted participant fee of $60 remains through October 6th. After October 6th, the fee is $70.  For NJ Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial Foundation members, the price is $50. Breakfast and lunch are included.

The Memorial and Museum are located off exit 116 of the Garden State Parkway.  The Museum is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.  The Memorial is open 24 hours, 7 days.