Dr. Avi Kempinski
Feburary 1, 1959 – May 13, 2012
On Sunday, May 13, 2012, we lost a teacher, colleague, and friend: Dr. Avi Kempinski, Associate Professor of German in the Department of Modern Languages, passed away.
In memory of Dr. Kempinski’s life and his dedication to FHSU students, we will celebrate his life on Friday, May 18, 2012, at 7:00 pm in the Moss-Thorns Gallery of Rarick Hall on the Fort Hays State University campus. Everyone—students, faculty, community members—is invited to come and share memories of Dr. Kempinski. A fund will be set up by Dr. Kempinski’s family to promote academic and cultural exchange in the future. Instead of gifts or flowers the family would appreciate donations to that fund. The program has been planned and arranged by former students of Dr. Kempinski.
Dr. Kempinski, was born Feburary 1, 1959, in New Jersey. He held a PhD in German Studies from the University of Michigan, a Master of Library Science degree from Rutgers University, an MA degree in Comparative Literature from Pennsylvania State University, and a BA degree in philosophy with a German minor from Alfred University in New York.
He joined Fort Hays State University in August of 2006. Among his many duties, he led the German program for six years, teaching classes from beginning level language classes to advanced literature and cultural classes.
Besides teaching, Dr. Kempinski actively fostered immersion of students in German culture through the German club, by playing German scrabble, at German movie nights, and in presentations that spread beyond campus and engaged both students and community members.
One of Dr. Kempinski’s outstanding accomplishments is the development of an academic partnership with the University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany, which includes both student and faculty exchanges. It brings students from Germany to Fort Hays and has provided dozens of Fort Hays students with a unique, once-in-a-lifetime study abroad experience.
In 2010 Dr. Kempinski was awarded a prestigious Fulbright Grant, which enabled him to teach in Germany in the summer of 2011 and expand his research on German cultural identity.
With his constant devotion to his teaching and research, Dr. Kempinski broadened the minds of his many students, expanding their view of the world and creating intercultural and international friendships that will keep his vision alive.
For more information about the celebration of Dr. Kempinski’s life on Friday, please contact the Dean’s office of the College of Arts and Sciences at (785) 628-4234.
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