At the start of his final semester as Prep’s principal, Mr. James DeAngelo, ’85 had the opportunity to revisit an earlier chapter—his decade-plus teaching German at Grand & Warren—as he presented a lecture as part of the Master Class Series, sponsored by Prep’s Sheehan Scholars program.
The Master Class Series is designed to expose students to topics beyond their curriculum. The program, in its inaugural year, highlights the scholarship of faculty and staff at Prep in their particular field using the themes of the Grad at Grad. The first Master Class, by Sra. Aymee Torres and Sra. Miryam DeChiaro, was entitled “Open to Growth: The Immigration Experience.” This was followed by the latest class given by Mr. DeAngelo: “January 30, 1933: An End, and a Beginning”.
Mr. DeAngelo’s presentation detailed the rise of the Nazi party in Weimar Germany. He argued that while the installation of Hitler as chancellor on January 30, 1933, is sometimes characterized as a “seizure of power,” it is important to recognize that it transpired entirely through legal means, often with the blessing of Germany’s prior political establishment, who failed to see the potential danger. Drawing on primary and secondary sources, he invited students into the machinations of the German parliament both before and after this pivotal moment, as a onetime fringe movement, once given access to the levers of power, quickly took the opportunity to eliminate all meaningful opposition.
The Master Class program is designed to offer several presentations per semester. In addition to the faculty and staff speakers, upperclassmen will also be presenting material on research they have done, either through independent study or summer internships while at Prep.