About three months ago, a close friend who attends the University of Delaware asked if I would like to accompany her school’s Hillel on an eight day trip to Miami, Florida. I could earn community service hours, and have an inexpensive vacation. I thought, “eight days in the Miami sun? I’m there!” and I signed up for the trip. What I thought would be a week of tanning on the beach was actually the most influential learning experience of my life.
Members of the Tribe have a presence at the Rose Bowl-winning campus — and at many other Protestant and Catholic universities.
Edmon J. Rodman
Los Angeles (JTA) — Texas Cristian University may have seemed out of place at this season’s Rose Bowl — but not as much as a few of its fans.
The notion of Jewish students at Texas Christian may seem like a mismatch, but don’t tell that to the several dozen Jewish students at TCU who are now basking in the glory of their team’s 21-19 victory over Big Ten power Wisconsin on New Year’s Day in Pasadena, Calif. Who says the Horned Frog, TCU’s mascot, can’t wear a kipa?
As federation system, Hillel launch new efforts, questions linger over how inclusive bid can be.
When five young Jews disrupted Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech at last month’s Jewish Federations of North America’s General Assembly — yelling “the settlements delegitimize Israel,” “the occupation delegitimizes Israel” and “the loyalty oath delegitimizes Israel” — they were greeted with anger and quickly whisked out of the room.
When protesters heckled Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA) General Assembly in New Orleans, the adults in the audience may have been surprised or even shocked. Many of the students in the 600-strong Hillel presence had a different reaction.
Hundreds of Jewish students will be in attendance at this week's General Assembly of the Jewish Federations of North America in New Orleans. And these future community leaders are getting real-world training in Jewish activism on campuses across the country.
History is being made! The first woman-written Torah scroll made its worldwide debut on campus last week. The Big Easy is getting ready for the biggest onslaught of Jewish college students in its history. Two Hillels have disappeared from the map and students want to know why. And students at two Israeli universities produced must-watch videos from Israeli universities that feature air-guitaring professors, Albert Einstein, underwater camera work, roller ballet and, yes, more. They’ll make you go Gaga.
The Jewish campus community continues to address the emotional and spiritual needs of students on campus in the wake of the suicide of Tyler Clementi at Rutgers. Hillels are taking the lead in creating accepting environments for students of all sexual preferences.
The future is happening now. In Manhattan’s Union Square, typical Sukkahs get a cool, modern makeover. Shabbat in a box is being handed out at the University of Southern California. Traditions are taking on a new twist as Jewish students incorporate interesting ideas to make the holidays more exciting. Jews and Muslims are taking on a modern and mature approach by sharing the holidays with each other.
The Talmudic sage Hillel was more radical and welcoming than many realize.
Rabbi Joseph Telushkin
Special to the Jewish Week
I was sitting with a rabbinic friend swapping stories about our lives and our work. He started talking about an encounter he had recently had: “A Jewish man, probably in his early 30s, and his non-Jewish girlfriend came to speak with me. They want to marry, but his parents are dead-set against their only son marrying a gentile.