John K. Roth, PhD, a professor and researcher known internationally for
his expertise on Holocaust studies, has been selected as the keynote
speaker for the 18th annual commencement ceremony of Western University of
Health Sciences (WesternU).
The ceremony will be held at 1 p.m. on Friday, June 4, at the Anaheim
Convention Center. Three hundred and fifty candidates for graduation from
six programs are expected to participate.
The title of Dr. Roth’s speech, “”Healing the Nation’s Wounds,”” is adapted
from a phrase in Abraham Lincoln’s second inaugural address. His
presentation will focus on the responsibility of medical professionals to
maintain the health of society, both physically and mentally, and will
include references to the war in Kosovo, the high school shooting in
Littleton and the recent tornadoes in the Midwest, as well as the
“”I’ve been on the WesternU campus several times and I have great
admiration and respect for the University,”” said Dr. Roth, an Upland
resident. “”I consider giving the Commencement address to be a huge honor
and a very serious responsibility.””
WesternU President Philip Pumerantz, PhD, said Dr. Roth was selected to
give the commencement address because of his dedication to educating
others about acceptance and tolerance.
“”His beliefs and actions are consistent with the University policy of
caring, compassion and humanism,”” said Dr. Pumerantz. “”I think his message
will prove to be inspirational to everyone, and particularly serve as a
guide to our graduating health professions students.””
Dr. Roth has written or edited more than 20 books on the Holocaust and
other topics. He is involved with the Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity
and on the editorial board for Holocaust and Genocide Studies. He was
appointed to the United States Holocaust Memorial Council by President
Clinton in 1994.
A professor of philosophy and religious studies at Claremont McKenna
College since 1966, Dr. Roth has also received appointments as a Graves
Fellow in the Humanities, a Fulbright Lecturer in American Studies at the
Innsbruck, Austria, and a Fellow of the National Humanities Institute at
Yale University. In 1988 he was awarded the title of U.S. National
Professor of the Year.
Last summer, WesternU established the Elie Wiesel Humanism in Healing
Award with the guidance and recommendations of Dr. Roth. The award is now
the University’s highest honor.