Alumni, BA RUP

Personal Statement

Stephan Ross (RUP ’59), born Szmulek Rozental in Lodz, Poland in 1931, is a survivor of the World War II Holocaust, having endured ten concentration camps in five years. He arrived in the United States in 1948 through the U.S. Government Committee for WWII Orphaned Children, determined to better himself and the world. After getting a BA in Sociology from Goddard, Ross went on to receive his MA in Psychology from Boston University in 1962 and worked for almost 50 years as a counselor for disadvantaged youth in Boston.

Among Ross’ many contributions to elevate young people from the effects of poverty was the creation of fee waivers and funding assistance from the College Board for impoverished youth in Boston to take the SAT and apply to college. Owing in no small part to Ross’s efforts, SAT fee waivers are now a nationwide program of the College Board.

Beginning in the late 1980s, working with then Boston mayor Ray Flynn, Stephan raised more than $14 million from public and private entities to erect the New England Holocaust Memorial and World War II Veterans Memorial. The Veterans Memorial was built to honor American troops who liberated the Dachau Concentration Camp. The two memorials stand together near Faneuil Hall, on Boston’s historic Freedom Trail.

“Goddard nurtured in Stephan, the way it does in all Goddard students, a drive to understand life experiences and translate that learning into actions that address the roots of the problems we face in society,” Goddard College President Barbara Vacarr said. “He is a living example of what a Goddard education is all about: an activist-oriented, rigorous academic inquiry that compels students to take action to effect change in our local and global communities.”