The Harvard Club of BerlinOne Hundred Years of History
On June 14, 1912 the Harvard Club of Berlin became a member of the Associated Harvard Clubs in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Looking back on 100 years of club life, this book assembles personal life stories of the Berlin-based Harvard alumni and describes how the club’s life was directly influenced by the political developments that took place in Berlin in the 20th and early 21st centuries. Two world wars, the division of the city and its consequent reunification after the fall of the wall in 1989 left distinct marks on the lives of Harvard’s Berlin-based alumni and on the activities of the club. Exemplary accounts include the journey made by Dr. Ernst (»Putzi«) Hanfstaengel: from Adolf Hitler´s »Inner Circle« all the way into the White House of his Harvard class mate Theodore Roosevelt. Another legendary story is the escape of Stephen Wechsler from the US-Army during the McCarthy era to Eastern Germany where he had to change his name to Victor Grossman. The book highlights how studying at Harvard deeply influenced the lives of German alumni and provides an account of the contributions of the club as a non-profit organization to Germany’s civil society.
The book was written by Simone Schelk, a journalist, as well as by Inken Wiese, Christian Köhler-Ma and Dr Tobias Pusch, all members of the board of the Harvard Club of Berlin. Inken Wiese is a researcher on Middle Eastern politics, Christian Köhler-Ma is an insolvency administrator, and Dr Tobias Pusch, president of the club, works as a lawyer and business angel in Berlin.
Today’s Harvard University Alumni Club of Berlin e.V. is a non-profit organization promoting academic education, interdisciplinary continuing education and international understanding. Together with the other German Harvard Clubs it awards scholarships to talented German students to pursue academic studies at Harvard University.