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Directors Report April 2014

April 11, 2014
11 Nissan 5774

Dear Friends,

Pesach (Passover) is upon us and I am full of mixed emotions.  I am optimistic because I know that as Jews we have a rich history and we are assured a wonderful future, as so many of our young people are involved in Jewish life.  I am frustrated because the discourse in our community is often full of cynicism and pessimism because not all of our young people are involved in Jewish life.

As I have often mentioned this pessimism is difficult for me to understand because Jewish history has taught us that our People have not only survived, but thrived, even though many Jews chose to go in a different direction.  We should learn from this that we have a duty to provide the opportunities for every Jew to connect to our culture, heritage, and religion, but it is each person’s choice to decide whether or not to get involved.  Pesach, as the Holiday that celebrates our becoming a nation, our freedom from slavery and affliction, and where everyone is invited to join in no matter their background or their level of connection is possibly the best example of the way this happens.  The Haggadah tells us that everyone is at the Seder table.  Prior to singing the Ma Nishtana (the 4 questions) we invite anyone who needs a place to join us at our Seder.  The 4 sons tell us that everyone can sit together even if we disagree.  A colleague of mine sent the following from the commentary on the Haggadah by Rabbi Jonathan Sacks.

In his discussion of the “four sons” he makes the point that even the wicked child who sees himself as outside of the community is included at the table and is crucial to the discussion.

Sacks says the following “Though they disagree, they sit around the same table, telling the same story. Though they differ, they stay together. They are part of a single family. Even the rebel is there, although part of him does not want to be. This too is who we are.”

Another colleague wrote, “We also read in the Haggadah that Rabbis Eliezer and Yehoshua who were lifelong partners in controversy shared a table together and that in and of itself, is something remarkable.”  Today, if we could merely bring the arguing sides together to share at the same table, Dayenu.

In my opinion this is one of the great challenges of our generation.  Encouraging and developing a stimulating discourse on the important issues of Jewish life, where we are willing to listen to all points of view and the disagreements we have can be respectful.  Our history is full of different perspectives and when we are able to discuss them respectfully we have thrived.  When we are unwilling to listen to others, we have survived, but it has been much more difficult.  A critical message of the Seder is, bring everyone to the table; let us celebrate what we have in common while we also learn to respect our differences.

I believe that this message will resonate with our People and especially students and their peers as we work together to build a vibrant and pluralistic Jewish community where each person is challenged to develop their own unique Jewish journey while being part of a greater whole. For this to happen we need to constantly offer opportunities that encourage students to connect, experience, and learn in a welcoming and enriching environment.

I ask that you join and support us in this “holy” work as together we will assure a better and more dynamic Jewish future.

As always I am interested in hearing your comments and ideas.  I can be reached at [email protected] or by calling 216-231-0040.

Best wishes for a joyful and meaningful Passover

Shabbat Shalom and Chag Sameach,

Gary Coleman

Executive Director

Cleveland Hillel Foundation reaches hundreds of students, their peers, and others monthly through a wide variety of programs and by building relationships in our five program divisions. We serve young adults aged 18-29 through more than 360 programs annually across our various campuses and divisions. Through Cleveland Hillel, students and young adults connect, experience, lead, celebrate, learn, travel, and give back while developing a dynamic, meaningful, and pluralistic community.

Upcoming: Passover Seders and Celebrations

Next week on Monday and Tuesday evenings we will be hosting Seders for students in Cleveland at the Hillel building adjacent to Case Western Reserve and at Oberlin on campus and at Shimon’s home.  In addition we are supporting students who are organizing Seders on their own.  Also during Pesach there will be kosher for Passover lunches and dinners for students both at the Hillel building by CWRU and in the kosher halal coop at Oberlin.  We thank all those who help make this possible.  As mentioned above Pesach is a time that brings Jewish students from all types of backgrounds together and we can appreciate that the vitality of our People comes from continuing our traditions, our diversity of perspectives, and our ability to learn from our history so  it becomes relevant to our life today.

Cleveland Metro Undergrad

Hillel @ CWRU, Hillel @ CSU, Hillel @JCU

We continue to reach out to students to both build relationships and sponsor programs.  Highlights include:

  • CAMPUS SUPER STARS occurred last night, April 10, at Nighttown in Cleveland Heights. The event showcased student vocal and instrumental talent, both solos and duets.  The event had ten performances featuring these students: Eric Graff (CIM), Justine Lamb Budge (CIM), Siena Miller (Oberlin), Laura Spector (Oberlin), Jaewon Kim (CIM), William Overcash (Oberlin), Brendan Hearn (CWRU), Clarie Slusarz (CWRU), Susan Bengston (CIM), Audrey Sproule (CIM), Laurel Weir (CIM), Andrew Rosenblum(CIM) and Aditya Remgaswamy (CWRU).  It was a special evening and we know it can become a successful annual event. An article about the event including bios of the performers is here http://www.clevelandjewishnews.com/news/local/article_541a26ca-b8f3-11e3-8469-0019bb2963f4.html
  • Shabbat dinner preceded by services Friday night at the Hillel building adjacent to CWRU.  On a number of Shabbatot multiple dinners are offered.
  • Meeting students for “coffee dates” and lunches
  • Student-Faculty lunch for undergrads at Hillel
    • Monthly Shabbat meal and oneg in the community for commuter students.  The most recent Shabbat lunch rook place at John Carroll
    • Soups on every Monday at the building
    • Students from across campuses attended Not By Bread Alone a play performed by an Israeli troupe of blind and deaf actors at the Cleveland Playhouse
    • Screening of the movie “The Turkish Passport” a film about Turkish diplomats who risked their lives to save Jews during WW2 with The Union of Turkish Students at CWRU
    • Weekly Jewish learning
    • Regular meetings of Hillel student leadership groups included elections of a new student executive committee at CWRU
    • Lunch n Learn at CSU is replaced with tabling all over campus
    • Birthright recruitment for an August trip
    • A panel of 4 Jewish students at JCU discussed how they felt about being Jews at a Jesuit university and aspects of Judaism in front of a crowd of JCU students
    • Chocolate Seder in celebration of Pesach at CSU
    • Israel culture night at the Hillel building
    • Learn about Israel all over campus through “Soda Stream” and meeting the Israel Fellow
    • Pie with Guy at John Carroll
    • Commuter students celebrated Purim the night of Purim at John Carroll (CWRU and CSU were on spring break)
    • Purim Carnival for senior citizens living at Montefiore Home  Pictures from the event are here https://www.facebook.com/ClevelandHillel/photos_stream
    • Purim Seuda for Shushan Purim when spring semester resumed
    • Preparing the building for Passover

More information is available about these and other programs on our website www.clevelandhillel.org  Photos from programs are located here https://www.facebook.com/ClevelandHillel/photos_albums

Oberlin

A wide variety of programming occurs weekly and these are some highlights.

I want to reiterate that we believe that Jewish students at Oberlin who back a two state solution that supports the rights of a Jewish State in Israel to thrive and live in peace with her neighbors should have the same privileges to be respected as other students.

 

  • Students learning Jewish texts with staff
  • Themed Shabbat dinners (including Greek, Pi (3.14), and Hungarian) preceded by services followed by an oneg
  • Shabbat lunch at Shimon’s home
  • The Kosher-Halal coop transitioned out of OSCA, became part of the student Hillel organization, and is continuing to serve students
  • Staff has lunch and dinner with students in the dining halls
  • Students who participated on a winter Birthright trip continue to meet with staff for follow up
  • Weekly meetings and discussions of the Hillel student group, JStreetU, and Jewish Advocacy Group including discussions on “Navigating Jewish Identity” and “Palestinian refugees as an issue in the peace negotiations”
  • Weekly Hebrew table at Stevenson
  • Israeli folk dancing
  • “The United States and the Israeli-Palestinian peace process – Help or Hinderance?”
  • CHALLaH, Oberlin’s Jewish a cappella group performed for a mid-term study break
  • Purim was celebrated through mask making, learning about women in the Book of Esther, Megillah reading and a Purim party in the Sco featuring bands and a costume contest
  • Preparing the co-op for Passover

More information about these and other Oberlin programs is available at http://obiejews.com/

JCLE/Graduate Students

The JCLE initiative has helped develop our programming for 21-29 year old graduate students and young professionals as a year round effort.  Recent programs include:

and CSU-Cleveland Marshall

  • Meeting with new arrivals to Cleveland
  • Jewish Medical Student Association (JMSA) meetings at CWRU
  • JCLE Happy Hour at a local bar
  • Planning for upcoming JCLE parties and sporting events

 

A short video explaining the importance of JCLE from the perspective of participants can be viewed here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Sw9XpUl3VQ

More information about other JCLE Programming is available www.jclecity.org

Summer Internship Program

We are preparing for the 7th year of the Summer Internship Program which will begin at the end of May 2014.  Throughout the first six years of the Program there has been tremendous positive feedback about the experience from both the interns and their placement supervisors.  The interviewing process with employers is continuing as students are being offered positions through the end of this month.

Of the 237 interns who are program alumni during the Program’s 6 years, 130 of them have graduated college as of May 2013.  Of these 45 have returned to Cleveland to live and work for at least one year.

A short new video about the Summer Internship Program from the perspective of participants can be viewed here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Ozthrk0cho

Remarks by two student interns at the closing lunch in August 2013 can be viewed on the Cleveland Hillel youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g  Jared’s remarks are here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RoYwFp1HVTU while Stephanie’s remarks can be seen and heard here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6NywUb6gmgc

A video of the experiences the interns had this summer can be viewed on our youtube station http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhption to celebrate Jewc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g

With the help of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, the program is successfully connected university students to Cleveland and its Jewish community.  We want to thank them and our other funders for their vision, support, and commitment.

New Building Initiative Update

We have made significant progress with the campaign and continue to seek gifts with naming opportunities for the capital campaign and the endowment.  For more information please be in touch with me at 216-231-0040 or [email protected]

Links/Miscellaneous/Announcements

  • Our Annual Meeting is scheduled for Wednesday May 28.  An invite including more information and the request to RSVP will be sent by e-mail at the beginning of May
  • The Jewish Alumni Network, a partnership of the Case Western Reserve University Alumni Association and our Cleveland Hillel Foundation, is hosting the first Annual reception celebrating the graduation of Jewish students from CWRU on Thursday May 1
  • A two minute video on the Summer Internship Program was recently produced.  It can be viewed https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Ozthrk0cho
  • The video on JCLE can be viewed here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Sw9XpUl3VQ
  • The 4 minute video on Cleveland Hillel can be viewed at http://player.vimeo.com/video/36924490?portrait=0&color=0026ff
  • Our FY 2013 annual report can be read on the website.  It and earlier Annual Reports can be viewed by going to http://www.clevelandhillel.org/annual-report.htm 
  • Please visit our web site www.clevelandhillel.org  and Facebook page.  We are interested in hearing your feed back
  • We recently had a social media audit and are implementing a more complete strategy.  Follow undergrad, JCLE, and SIP on Facebook and Instagram
  • Student surveys took place during winter break. This evaluation tool is helping us with program planning
  • A list of our board members can be found by clicking here

http://clevelandhillel.org/board.htm  past presidents are here http://clevelandhillel.org/past-presidents.htm and a list of staff can be found here http://www.clevelandhillel.org/staff.htm

CLEVELAND HILLEL MISSION STATEMENT

Engage and empower Jewish young adults through exceptional programming and experiences that foster active Jewish life on and off campus and in the Cleveland Jewish community

CLEVELAND HILLEL VISION STATEMENT

Every Jewish young adult aspires to lifelong Jewish identity and commitment to Jewish life and community

Fundraising Request, Thank you and Donor Recognition

Please consider partnering with us by making a donation on line at (Network for Good) or by mailing a check to:

Cleveland Hillel Foundation
11291 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland OH 441

If you are interested in learning about special funding opportunities please look at our web site or contact me at [email protected]

We thank the Jewish Federation of Cleveland for their annual allocation.  In addition to the help from our donors, funders, and stakeholders, this level of support enables us to staff and continue to grow our programming.

With the help of all of you we are able to continue bringing quality programs to the undergraduate, graduate, and professional students at the universities we serve and “twenty something” young professionals in the community as we assure a brighter Jewish future

A list of donors from July 1, 2012 – June 30, 2013 is posted on our website at http://clevelandhillel.org/pdf/donor.pdf

Linked here is a short video thank you from our students for all the support we receive from our donors And now, a few words from our friends at the Cleveland Hillel Foundation

Directors Report March 2014

March 4, 2014
2 Adar Bet 5744

Dear Friends,

By nature and history we are a hopeful and optimistic people. This is what has helped us survive for centuries through difficult and tragic times.  I think it is also the reason we have accomplished much as individuals and as a People to improve and repair the world “tikkun olam”. I open with this because one might think we are a pessimistic people when you listen to the discourse in our community which often focuses on the problems and challenges we face.  Of course there are problems and these include:

  • Yes, there is a nuclear threat from Iran;
  • Yes, Israel society is split on many issues including ultra-orthodox/secular relations and rich/poor inequality;
  • Yes, the Jewish world in the United States is full of challenges regarding how to retain large numbers of young Jews and give them reasons and tools to be involved in Jewish life;
  • Yes, there is still anti-Semitism;
  • Yes, the BDS movement is mostly a cover up for people who are opposed to the State of Israel being a Jewish State.

There is no shortage of issues and I do not want to make light of them.  Based on our history we need to be aware of and on the guard for acts of anti-Semitism, take seriously the threats when people state that they want to destroy Israel, and take appropriate actions to defend ourselves and live securely.

But also based on our history we are living at a unique time where Jewish life is flourishing and many people are proud to state publicly that they are a Jew.  I do not think anyone in 1914 would have dreamed that in 2014;

  • Over six million Jews would be living in the State of Israel, it would be the center of Jewish life, and that the country would be a medical and technology giant;
  • There would be Judaic Studies Courses, Programs, or Departments in hundreds of universities;
  • All kinds of Jews would be comfortable wearing kippot in public;
  • More young Jews would be studying in yeshivot and seminaries than any time in our history;
  • Hundreds of thousands of young Jews would visit Israel on birthright and other programs;
  • The numbers of Jews who would be CEO’s, or have successful careers in entertainment, business, academics, among so many other arenas;
  • How many philanthropic and “making a difference” initiatives would be moved forward by concerned and interested Jews.

Of course, as mentioned already, we do not live in a world without challenges.  Not everyone loves us, and not everyone born Jewish is interested in being involved in the Jewish world.  But let us acknowledge that this was never the case.  We know this from the narratives in our Torah, through the books of the Prophets, the Writings, through the Talmud period, and throughout our history.  We have always been a People where many of those born Jewish have chosen or been forced to go in other directions.

I think that in today’s world especially in our work with university students and their peers, we have to accent the positive while still being aware of the challenges.  There is so much to do and we can make a difference.  Our role on campus and in the community is to create opportunities for young Jews to make a lifelong commitment to their Jewish identity and the Jewish community.  We must listen to the students and their peers and hear what their interests are and work with them to implement their ideas that best serve the Jewish community and our world.  Yes, we have expectations and we should clearly state them.

  • We value every Jew and want to encourage each one to find their place in the Jewish world;
  • We encourage the development of a pluralistic Jewish community that welcomes all, celebrates our commonality, and respects our differences;
  • We believe in the right of the Jewish People to live securely in the State of Israel that will thrive next to a Palestinian State;
  • We know that all human beings are created in Gd’s image so it is our duty to care for all people in need;
  • We think that every Jew has a right to a Jewish education as knowing who you are is a key to making the world a better place;
  • We realize that each of us has the ability to make a difference in the world whether big or small;
  • We know that it is in our hands to repair the world so we beseech each person to be a mentch (positive role model);
  • We educate students and suggest they meet people different than them as it enriches their lives.

We can accent the positive if we constantly offer opportunities that encourage students to connect, experience, and learn in a welcoming and enriching environment.

I ask that you join and support us in this “holy” work as together we will assure a better and more dynamic Jewish future.

As always I am interested in hearing your comments and ideas.  I can be reached at [email protected] or by calling 216-231-0040.

With Blessings,

 

Gary Coleman

Executive Director

 

Cleveland Hillel Foundation reaches hundreds of students, their peers, and others monthly through a wide variety of programs and by building relationships in our five program divisions. Annually we serve almost 2500 different young adults through more than 360 programs across our various campuses and divisions. Through Cleveland Hillel, students and young adults connect, experience, lead, celebrate, learn, travel, and give back while developing a dynamic, meaningful, and pluralistic community.

Upcoming Event  CAMPUS SUPER STARS  April 10

Cleveland Hillel will be holding its first CAMPUS SUPER STARS on Thursday evening, April 10 at Nighttown in Cleveland Heights. The event will showcase student vocal and instrumental talent, both solos and duets.  Auditions were held earlier this week on March 2.  Judges in voice, strings, piano and classical music heard many acts and chose 10 to move on to the finals. Auditions were open to full-time, undergraduate or graduate student from Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland Institute of Music, Cleveland Institute of Art, Cleveland State University, John Carroll University and Oberlin College.

The April 10 event will begin with wine and hors d’oeuvres at 6:30 followed by the competition at 7:45.

Tickets for the evening are $100 for general seating and $150 for VIP seating. Sponsorships are available at $1,000, $1,500 and $2,000.

Finalists on April 10 include Eric Graff (CIM), Justine Lamb Budge (CIM), Siena Miller (Oberlin), Laura Spector (Oberlin), Jaewon Kim (CIM), William Overcash (Oberlin), Brendan Hearn (CWRU), Clarie Slusarz (CWRU), Susan Bengston (CIM), Audrey Sproule (CIM), Laurel Weir (CIM), Andrew Rosenblum(CIM) and Aditya Remgaswamy (CWRU).

Cash prizes will be awarded to the top three acts on April 10, followed by performances from the winners.

For information about CAMPUS SUPER STARS, or to purchase tickets for April 10, contact [email protected] or call the Hillel office at 216-231-0040.

Cleveland Metro Undergrad

Hillel @ CWRU, Hillel @ CSU, Hillel @JCU

We continue to reach out to students to both build relationships and sponsor programs.  Highlights include:

  • William Daroff Senior Vice President for Public Policy and Director of the Washington Office of The Jewish Federations of North America was the guest speaker at the George B. and Elsa Golden Memorial Lecture.  He met with a group of 15 students over dinner and talked with them as a three degree CWRU alum.  At the lecture he spoke to about 70 students and community members about Current Issues Facing the Jewish Community.  He was cautiously optimistic and as an activist passionately informed everyone that each of them can make a difference.
  • Lara Friedman  the Director of Policy and Government Relations for Americans for Peace Now (APN) spoke at Hillel  on the topic of Israeli-Palestinian Peace: Prospects and Obstacles
  • Shabbat dinner preceded by services Friday night at the Hillel building adjacent to CWRU.  On a number of Shabbatot multiple dinners are offered.
  • Meeting students for “coffee dates” and lunches as well as reaching out in the dining halls
  • Monthly Shabbat meal and oneg in the community for commuter students
  • Soups on every Monday at the building
  • Students from across campuses attended Yentl when it was performed at the Cleveland Playhouse and went to a Lake Erie Monsters hockey game
  • Weekly Jewish learning resumed
  • Regular meetings of Hillel Undergraduate Leadership Council (HULC) at CWRU and CSU and the start of a new Womens’ Group (Banoti) at CWRU
  • Lunch n Learn at CSU is replaced with tabling all over campus
  • Birthright recruitment for an August trip
  • “A Night in Tel Aviv” party at JCU
  • Israeli movement and dance program
  • Israel culture night at the Hillel building
  • Learn about Israel all over campus through “Soda Stream” and meeting the Israel Fellow
  • An opinion piece in “The Cauldron” the CSU student newspaper questioned CSU President Ronald Berkman for opposing the ASA decision to boycott Israeli academics and universities.  A Hillel student responded.  Her response can be read here. http://www.csucauldron.com/opinion/letter-to-the-editor-1.3144721#.UxPypfldWIh

 

More information is available about these and other programs on our website www.clevelandhillel.org  Photos from programs are located here https://www.facebook.com/ClevelandHillel/photos_albums

Oberlin

The spring semester started at Oberlin in the first week of February.    This week is the first anniversary of the Day of Dialogue when classes were cancelled on March 4, 2013 because of a series of racial, homophobic, and anti-Semitic incidents.  There are a number of special events that are being planned for this week that focus on the need to support and respect one another.  We think that Jewish students at Oberlin who back a two state solution that supports the rights of a Jewish State in Israel to thrive and live in peace with her neighbors should have the same privileges to be respected as other students.

A lot of programming has already occurred and these are some highlights.

  • Students learning Jewish texts with staff
  • Themed Shabbat dinner preceded by services followed by an oneg
  • Shabbat lunch at Shimon’s home
  • The Kosher-Halal coop transitioned out of OSCA, became an independent organization under Hillel, and is continuing to serve students
  • Staff has lunch and dinner with students in the dining halls
  • Students returned from a Birthright trip and meet weekly for follow up
  • Weekly meetings and discussions of the Hillel student group, JStreetU, and Jewish Advocacy Group
  • Weekly Hebrew table at Stevenson
  • “The Failure of Socialism and The Emergence of Capitalism in Israel” with former Oberlin professor Ari Ofengenden
  • CHALLaH, Oberlin’s Jewish a cappella group has auditions and rehearsals
  • Participated in the Oberlin College symposium on college investment policies and the complexities of divestment
  • Students discussed with Shimon the “Open Hillel” movement on some campuses and said they thought the direction of Oberlin Hillel in promoting a two state solution made sense
  • Valentine’s Day Shabbat with the MRC
  • A first year student spoke about his winter term project about the parallels between Anne Frank and Pakistani education activist Malala Yousafzai
  • “Occupation and Negotiations: A Conversation with Lara Friedman”: 70+ students came to hear Lara Friedman, director of Policy and Government Relations for Americans For Peace Now
  • Privilege and Community in Jewish Buenos Aries: a presentation by a second year Jewish student who traveled to Argentina for Winter Term
  • “A Night of Israeli Jazz”: 50+ students came to a modern Jazz concert featuring an Oberlin College Conservatory student and 3 Israeli musicians
  • Movie Night: featuring “Don’t Mess with the Zohan”
  • Over 50 students attend a program with Israeli and Palestinian youth activists from OneVoice, an international grassroots movement that amplifies the voice of mainstream Israelis and Palestinians, empowering them to propel their elected representatives toward the two-state solution
  • Purim mask making

Later this week

  • Navigating Jewish Identity at Oberlin a positive, thoughtful space for students to both share and hear about the multiplicity of factors that contribute to conceiving Jewish identity, on both individual and community levels.
  • “Antisemitism Old and New: East/Central European Nationalism, Western Anti-Zionism” with Leonidas Donskis, a leading Lithuanian public intellectual, member of European Parliament, intrepid defender of human and civil rights, author or editor of 30 books (translated into 15 languages), professor of political and moral philosophy. The talk is sponsored by OC Program of Jewish Studies, Program of Russian & East European Studies, Dept. of Russian, Dept. of History, Dept. of Politics, Office of the Dean of Arts & Sciences, Office of the President, OC Hillel, OC Zionists.

More information about these and other Oberlin programs is available at http://obiejews.com/

JCLE/Graduate Students

The JCLE initiative has helped develop our programming for 21-29 year old graduate students and young professionals as a year round effort.  Recent programs include:

  • Winter birthright trip with the Jewish Federation of Cleveland
  • Shabbat dinners at apartments of graduate students
  • Jewish Law Student Association (JLSA) meetings at both CWRU

and CSU-Cleveland Marshall

  • Meeting with new arrivals to Cleveland
  • JLSA Bagel Breakfast
  • Jewish Medical Student Association (JMSA) meetings at CWRU
  • JLSA Student/Faculty Luncheon
  • JCLE Happy Hour at a local bar
  • JCLE Bowling event
  • JLSA Lunch n Learn at Cleveland Marshall
  • Planning for upcoming JCLE parties and sporting events

A short video explaining the importance of JCLE from the perspective of participants can be viewed at http://clevelandhillel.org/videos.htm  It is the second video on the page.  It can also be viewed on the Cleveland Hillel youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g

More information about other JCLE Programming is available www.jclecity.org 

Summer Internship Program

We are preparing for the 7th year of the Summer Internship Program which will begin at the end of May 2014.  Throughout the first six years of the Program there has been tremendous positive feedback about the experience from both the interns and their placement supervisors.

The student application deadline was February 7. Skype interviews took place the week of February 10.  Students eligible for the Program entered a placement data base to pick those placements that interest them.  Their resume is sent to the employers and the interviewing process with employers begins later this month.

Of the 237 interns who are program alumni during the Program’s 6 years, 130 of them have graduated college as of May 2013.  Of these 45 have returned to Cleveland to live and work for at least one year.

A short new video about the Summer Internship Program from the perspective of participants can be viewed at http://clevelandhillel.org/videos.htm  It is the first video on the page.  It can also be viewed on the Cleveland Hillel youtube channel at http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g

Remarks by two student interns at the closing lunch in August 2013 can be viewed on the Cleveland Hillel youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g  Jared’s remarks are here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RoYwFp1HVTU while Stephanie’s remarks can be seen and heard here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6NywUb6gmgc

A video of the experiences the interns had this summer can be viewed on our youtube station http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g  The SIP video is here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_c3WfMncYw0

With the help of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, the program is successfully connected university students to Cleveland and its Jewish community.  We want to thank them and our other funders for their vision, support, and commitment.

New Building Initiative Update

We have made significant progress with the campaign and continue to seek gifts with naming opportunities for the capital campaign and the endowment.  For more information please be in touch with me at 216-231-0040 or [email protected]

Links/Miscellaneous/Announcements

http://clevelandhillel.org/board.htm  past presidents are here http://clevelandhillel.org/past-presidents.htm and a list of staff can be found here http://www.clevelandhillel.org/staff.htm

CLEVELAND HILLEL MISSION STATEMENT

Engage and empower Jewish young adults through exceptional programming and experiences that foster active Jewish life on and off campus and in the Cleveland Jewish community

CLEVELAND HILLEL VISION STATEMENT

Every Jewish young adult aspires to lifelong Jewish identity and commitment to Jewish life and community 

Fundraising Request, Thank you and Donor Recognition

Please consider partnering with us by making a donation on line at (Network for Good) or by mailing a check to:

Cleveland Hillel Foundation
11291 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland OH 441

If you are interested in learning about special funding opportunities please look at our web site or contact me at [email protected]

We thank the Jewish Federation of Cleveland for their annual allocation.  In addition to the help from our donors, funders, and stakeholders, this level of support enables us to staff and continue to grow our programming.

With the help of all of you we are able to continue bringing quality programs to the undergraduate, graduate, and professional students at the universities we serve and “twenty something” young professionals in the community as we assure a brighter Jewish future

A list of donors from July 1, 2012 – June 30, 2013 is posted on our website at http://clevelandhillel.org/pdf/donor.pdf

Linked here is a short video thank you from our students for all the support we receive from our donors And now, a few words from our friends at the Cleveland Hillel Foundation

Directors Report January 2014

January 22, 2014
21 Shvat 5774

Dear Friends,

I hope this finds you well.  Since my end of fall semester e-report/blog (December 12, 2013) which included a link to Eric Fingerhut’s response to the Hillel student group at Swarthmore, I have sent out two special e-mails, one regarding the academic boycott of Israel by the American Studies Association (ASA) including the response from President Snyder of CWRU and a second linking to the article in the New York Times about testing the boundaries of discussion on Israel and Eric Fingerhut’s response.  Here is a link to Eric’s response.  http://hillel.org/about/news-views/news-views—blog/news-and-views/2013/12/29/president-fingerhuts-response-to-new-york-times-article

It seems that lately, remember the Pew Report came out in October, Hillel is the focus of attention on a wide variety of important discussions that are occurring within the Jewish community.  Not only how “open” we should be regarding Israel, but what is our role on campus, how welcoming we are to all Jewish students and perspectives, and how we can reach the unaffiliated.  These are all important discussions and will help us clarify the value added we bring to campus and the community through the relationships we build and the programs we implement for students and their peers.  Israel is part of this, but Hillel is much more than this and we need to express that clearly.

In my opinion we must continually tell our story; that Hillel is open to all Jewish students and their friends to celebrate Judaism in a wide variety of ways.  We welcome everyone and it is our duty to create opportunities for Jewish students through relationship building and programming to develop their Jewish journey, make a life-long commitment to the Jewish People and the World, and connect with a Jewish community that is pluralistic and meaningful.  That does not mean that every perspective fits into our worldview nor needs to be part of our tent.  Discourse and disagreement are part of Jewish tradition, as is developing consensus and systems. A community can thrive when we celebrate our commonality and respect our differences.  This seems simple enough even though we know it is a constant challenge.

My perspective on the “Open Hillel” issue and the ongoing dialogue is that we should encourage and welcome all conversations that are supportive of a two State solution to the conflict, realize that painful compromises will need to be made by all those involved, and affirm the right for Israel to be a Jewish State living in peaceful coexistence with her neighbors so all the countries and Peoples in the Middle East can thrive.  Other groups on campus have the right to bring anti-Israel speakers to campus.  We do not need to support those events as they are antithetical to what we believe.

Many of my colleagues have written insightful pieces these last weeks and I want to share a few of them.

Andy Gittelson at Oregon Hillel wrote: (excerpt)

“Hillel’s long-established mission and vision is this: “We envision a world where every student is inspired to make an enduring commitment to Jewish life, learning and Israel.”

Hillel is fully committed to creating an environment for debating or criticizing Israel’s actions and policies. We welcome discussion about settlements, the Palestinian community, or the establishment of a two-state solution. We welcome criticism of Israel’s policies and actions. But, at the end of the day, we are committed to helping students build an enduring commitment to Israel. That is our mission.

We believe that by inspiring students to develop a positive connection and commitment to Israel, we help our students to strengthen their Jewish identity. Some may disagree with our mission. That is their right. But they cannot, and should not, expect Hillel to change a fundamental part of its purpose because they disagree with it.”

Julie Roth at Princeton wrote: (excerpt)

“What keeps me up at night is the deeper educational question: how do we best foster open debate between divergent views while simultaneously amplifying unbiased and supportive perspectives in a climate on college campuses where Israel is so often unfairly attacked? There is an undeniable culture shift among college students today with respect to the Israel conversation as compared to the generation of their parents and grandparents.   Faculty, too, are experiencing an alarming and polarizing shift where colleagues are attacking Israel through academic professional associations.  Within and across generations, there are those urging us to be more open to critical views and others urging us to do more to defend Israel on campus.   We must continue to do both, and not be afraid to experiment and to be bold, as long as we have the wisdom to be honest and reflective as well. This generation of the Jewish people and the State of Israel are simply too important to do anything less. “

Tilly Shames at Michigan had an op-ed in the New York Jewish Week.  You can read it here. http://www.thejewishweek.com/editorial-opinion/opinion/look-inside-hillels-boundaries

Danielle LeShaw at Ohio University had a piece in the Forward.  Here is the link  http://forward.com/articles/191084/the-hillel-kids-are-alright/#ixzz2qwxY029s

To summarize, in my opinion, the best answer to the questions of where our community is going, the relationship with Israel, and what it means to be a Jew today is for us to constantly offer opportunities that encourage students to connect, experience, and learn in a welcoming and enriching environment.

I ask that you join and support us in this “holy” work as together we will assure a better and more dynamic Jewish future.

As always I am interested in hearing your comments and ideas.  I can be reached at [email protected] or by calling 216-231-0040.

With Blessings,

Gary Coleman
Executive Director

As I write this I heard about the tragic killing at Purdue University.  These acts of violence need to be stopped.  We can do better.

Cleveland Hillel Foundation reaches hundreds of students, their peers, and others monthly through a wide variety of programs and by building relationships in our five program divisions. Annually we serve over 2500 different young adults through more than 360 programs across our various campuses and divisions. Through Cleveland Hillel, students and young adults connect, experience, lead, celebrate, learn, travel, and give back while developing a dynamic, meaningful, and pluralistic community.

Golden Lecture – William Daroff – February 27

The George B. and Elsa Golden Memorial Lecture will bring William Daroff, Vice-President for Public Policy and Director of the Washington Office of The Jewish Federations of North America to Cleveland Hillel on February 27 to speak about “Current Issues Facing the Jewish Community”   More information is available at http://clevelandhillel.org/pdf/golden_lecture_postcard_front.pdf  or by going to our website http://clevelandhillel.org/blog/download-event-forms and downloading Golden Lecture 2014.  RSVP to [email protected]  or you can register here http://www.eventbrite.com/e/george-b-and-elsa-golden-memorial-lecture-tickets-10279489229

Update on area Universities response to Academic boycott

As mentioned above, in late December Case Western Reserve University published a response to the ASA decision on boycotting Israeli professors and academic institutions.  It can be read here http://cwru-daily.com/news/leaderships-statement-on-academic-boycotts/

 

In January Cleveland State University released this statement  http://www.csuohio.edu/news/csu-administration-opposes-american-studies-associations-israel-boycott

Oberlin College also released a statement earlier this month.  It can be found here http://news.oberlin.edu/articles/statement-academic-boycotts/#.Ut34gRAo7IU

The Observer, CWRU’s student newspaper, wrote this article about President Snyder’s statement http://observer.case.edu/president-snyder-stands-with-aau-speaks-out-against-proposed-academic-boycott-of-israel/

Cleveland Metro Undergrad

Hillel @ CWRU, Hillel @ CSU, Hillel @JCU

Students returned to class a little over a week ago.  During winter break and since the beginning of classes we have been reaching out to students and involved in a number of programs.  Highlights include:

  • Welcome Back Israeli barbecue
  • Tu B’Shvat Seder celebrating the renewal of our People in Israel
  • Shabbat dinner preceded by services Friday night at the Hillel building adjacent to CWRU
  • Participating in campus student organization fairs
  • Cleveland Hillel hosted CWRU’s annual MLK Day of Service & Symposium. This event included a morning of service followed by an afternoon symposium focused on student activism and being agents for change.  The program was covered by a local television station and can be viewed here http://www.19actionnews.com/story/24500830/clevelanders-honor-mlk-with-service
    • Meeting students for “coffee dates” and lunches as well as reaching out to the residential communities
    • Monthly Shabbat meal in the community for commuter students
    • Regular meetings of Hillel Undergraduate Leadership Council (HULC) at CWRU and CSU and the start of a new Womens’ Group at CWRU
    • Leadership transition at John Carroll

During winter break students and staff went to Israel on birthright and to Florida on an alternative winter break trip.

A comment from the service learning trip to Florida was:

“On the trip we were working together raking leaves, cutting down trees that put peoples homes at risk, building fences, and painting houses. But the most incredible part was the cultural mix that came alive on the trip. Though we were all studying in Ohio or Indiana, students from Israel, China, India, Japan, America, and more came together working towards a common good. People from all three Abrahamic religions were sharing the same bus and beds (metaphorically speaking) for a whole week showing that when working together, peace is possible.”

More information is available about these and other programs on our website www.clevelandhillel.org  Photos from programs are located here https://www.facebook.com/ClevelandHillel/photos_albums

Oberlin

Oberlin is in the midst of winter term.  During this special month long term we have organized a number of programs.  These include:

  • Students learning Jewish texts with staff
  • Shabbat dinner preceded by services
  • The Kosher-Halal coop transitioned out of OSCA, became an independent organization under Hillel, and is serving students during winter term
  • Staff has lunch and dinner with students in the dining halls
  • Students travel to Israel on a Birthright trip through Hillel International with staffing from an Oberlin Hillel professional

More information about these and other Oberlin programs is available at http://obiejews.com/

JCLE/Graduate Students

The JCLE initiative has helped develop our programming for 21-29 year old graduate students and young professionals as a year round effort.  Recent programs include:

  • Winter birthright trip with the Jewish Federation of Cleveland
  • Shabbat dinners at apartments of graduate students
  • Jewish Law Student Association (JLSA) meetings at both CWRU

and CSU-Cleveland Marshall

Graduate student welcome back Happy Hour

  • Meeting with new arrivals to Cleveland
  • Jewish Medical Student Association (JMSA) meetings at CWRU
  • JCLE Happy Hour
  • Planning for upcoming JCLE parties and sporting events

A short video explaining the importance of JCLE from the perspective of participants can be viewed at http://clevelandhillel.org/videos.htm  It is the second video on the page.  It can also be viewed on the Cleveland Hillel youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g

More information about other JCLE Programming is available www.jclecity.org

Summer Internship Program

We are preparing for the 7th year of the Summer Internship Program which will begin at the end of May 2014.  Throughout the first six years of the Program there has been tremendous positive feedback about the experience from both the interns and their placement supervisors.

Of the 237 interns who are program alumni during these 6 years, 130 of them have graduated college as of May 2013.  Of these 45 have returned to Cleveland to live and work for at least one year.

A short new video about the Summer Internship Program from the perspective of participants can be viewed at http://clevelandhillel.org/videos.htm  It is the first video on the page.  It can also be viewed on the Cleveland Hillel youtube channel at http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g

Remarks by two student interns at the closing lunch in August 2013 can be viewed on the Cleveland Hillel youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g  Jared’s remarks are here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RoYwFp1HVTU while Stephanie’s remarks can be seen and heard here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6NywUb6gmgc

A video of the experiences the interns had this summer can be viewed on our youtube station http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g  The SIP video is here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_c3WfMncYw0

With the help of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, the program is successfully connected university students to Cleveland and its Jewish community.  We want to thank them and our other funders for their vision, support, and commitment.

New Building Initiative Update

We have made significant progress with the campaign and continue to seek gifts with naming opportunities for the capital campaign and the endowment.  For more information please be in touch with me at 216-231-0040 or [email protected]

CWRU Jewish Alumni Network Event – February 12 – Glenn Starkman

The Jewish Alumni Network, a partnership of CWRU Alumni Association and Cleveland Hillel, is hosting CWRU Professor Glenn Starkman, who will be speaking about

“So What’s the Big Deal About this Higgs Boson?” on February 12.  You can register at http://www.eventbrite.com/e/an-evening-of-learning-with-glenn-starkman-registration-10016482569

Links/Miscellaneous/Announcements

http://clevelandhillel.org/board.htm  past presidents are here http://clevelandhillel.org/past-presidents.htm and a list of staff can be found here http://www.clevelandhillel.org/staff.htm

CLEVELAND HILLEL MISSION STATEMENT

Engage and empower Jewish young adults through exceptional programming and experiences that foster active Jewish life on and off campus and in the Cleveland Jewish community

CLEVELAND HILLEL VISION STATEMENT

Every Jewish young adult aspires to lifelong Jewish identity and commitment to Jewish life and community

Fundraising Request, Thank you and Donor Recognition

Please consider partnering with us by making a donation on line at (Network for Good) or by mailing a check to:

Cleveland Hillel Foundation
11291 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland OH 441

If you are interested in learning about special funding opportunities please look at our web site or contact me at [email protected]

We thank the Jewish Federation of Cleveland for their annual allocation.  In addition to the help from our donors, funders, and stakeholders, this level of support enables us to staff and continue to grow our programming.

With the help of all of you we are able to continue bringing quality programs to the undergraduate, graduate, and professional students at the universities we serve and “twenty something” young professionals in the community as we assure a brighter Jewish future

A list of donors from July 1, 2012 – June 30, 2013 is posted on our website at http://clevelandhillel.org/pdf/donor.pdf

Linked here is a short video thank you from our students for all the support we receive from our donors And now, a few words from our friends at the Cleveland Hillel Foundation

Directors Report December 2013

December 12, 2013
9 Tevet 5774

Dear Friends,

Students are finishing finals and the fall semester is coming to an end.  In the program part of this e-mail/blog I will focus on the programming we have implemented over the last number of weeks.  As you know one of the interesting quirks of the Jewish calendar this year was the convergence of Thanksgiving and Chanukah.  This gave the opportunity for many students to spend the first days of Chanukah at home with their families, probably a once in a lifetime opportunity.  Still we sponsored a number of programs over the last days of Chanukah on multiple campuses.

As we think about Jewish life on campus and in the community, I often stress the importance of Hillel being an open and welcoming pluralistic Jewish community that offers students and their peers many opportunities to develop their Jewish journey and become involved in a Jewish community.  I have recently thought that there might be another paradigm and possibly a more important one; the view that the Jewish People are one large extended Family.  As we talk about why be Jewish and how to be Jewish, maybe the best answer is because the Jewish People are my family and the traditions of our People are my family traditions.

In our world, where we live on a continuum from particularism to universalism we need an anchor to help us and guide us.  This anchor, our “Family”, is necessary for us to deal with the seeming contradiction that on one hand as we learn from the Torah, all People are created in Gd’s image so we are connected to everyone.  Yet we also know that nations, ethnic groups, religions, tribes, clans, communities etc. have developed throughout history.  They each have their particular way and traditions for their members to connect with one another.  But why is this needed if I can be like everyone?  Isn’t that better?  Doesn’t that make me a better person?

I believe that an answer to why having a particular way of life and traditions (Judaism) makes sense is if we view our Jewish Religion, People, and Culture as a family.  Each of us is part of this family with a long history, many traditions, and multiple ways of practicing.  As in every family some people choose to leave, others join, and most stay.  The relationships are dynamic and ever changing as there are arguments and disagreements, but there are also celebrations and an understanding that what binds us is greater than what separates us.  The vast majority of us would not want to switch to a different family.  When we are without our family we feel a sense of loneliness.

So if we focus on the Jewish People as a large extended family we might have the paradigm that is the key for our continued success and thriving.  We can become more accepting of fellow Jews who think or act differently than us, because they are part of us; they are family.  As in any family not all conduct is condoned and there are parameters that are set, but the overriding interest is to keep people in the family if at all possible.

Maybe this paradigm will help us to connect with one another.  If each of us feel that we are not alone, but part of a family, we might be more interested in reaching out and being supportive of one another.

This is a new idea for me that I am still developing and I appreciate your comments, insights and thoughts.  I can be reached at [email protected] or by calling 216-231-0040.

Your help will enable us to continue to offer opportunities that encourage students and their peers to connect in a welcoming and enriching environment.  I ask that you join and support us in this “holy” work as together we will assure a better and more dynamic Jewish future.

With Blessings,

Gary Coleman
Executive Director

Cleveland Hillel Foundation reaches hundreds of students, their peers, and others monthly through a wide variety of programs and by building relationships in our five program divisions. Annually we serve over 2500 different young adults through more than 360 programs across our various campuses and divisions. Through Cleveland Hillel, students and young adults connect, experience, lead, celebrate, learn, travel, and give back while developing a dynamic, meaningful, and pluralistic community.

Hillel International President and CEO Eric Fingerhut response to Hillel student board at Swarthmore College     

In light of recent events at Swarthmore College, where the Hillel student board voted on Sunday to reject the Hillel guidelines for campus Israel activities, Hillel International President and CEO Eric Fingerhut wrote the letter linked here http://hillel.org/about/news-views/news-views—blog/news-and-views/2013/12/10/hillel-president-responds-to-swarthmore-college-hillel-resolution  to Joshua Wolfsun, Communications Coordinator of the Swarthmore Hillel Student Board.

There are also other posts on the issue at a variety of websites.  If you are interested in further information on this issue or discussing it please contact me at [email protected] or 216-231-0040.

Cleveland Metro Undergrad

Hillel @ CWRU, Hillel @ CSU, Hillel @JCU

As the fall semester entered its final month, programming continued to be strong and varied.  Highlights include:

  • Shabbat dinner preceded by services every Friday night at the Hillel building adjacent to CWRU
  • Weekly “Soups-On” Monday’s in the building
  • Weekly learning every Tuesday evening in the building
  • Café Schmooze every Tuesday and Lunch ‘n Learn every Thursday at CSU
  • Volunteering at a local senior citizen retirement home
  • Meeting students for “coffee dates” and lunches as well as reaching out to the residential communities
  • Monthly Shabbat meal in the community for commuter students
  • Regular meetings of Hillel Undergraduate Leadership Council (HULC) at CWRU and CSU and the start of a new Womens’ Group at CWRU
  • Participated in travel abroad fair
  • Orientation for winter break social justice trip
  • Womens’ Group has an outing to a yoga studio
  • Students decorated picture frames at booth at ‘Study Over” in preparation for finals at CWRU
  • Students made calls for the Jewish Federation of Cleveland’s annual campaign
  • Served Matzo Ball soup in KSL library at CWRU as a study break
  • Hillel performance at International Day at CSU
 Chanukah Roundup

Students spent the first half of Chanukah at home as it coincided with Thanksgiving break.  When they returned to campus we celebrated with them through:

  • Candle lighting in the Hillel building the last three nights of Chanukah
  • “Latkapalooza”, make your own latke toppings with the help of bon apetit using the Hillel kitchen
  • Greeks take back Chanukah in the building after outside candle lighting with Chabad at CWRU
  • Chanukah party during Café Schmooze at CSU
  • “White Elephant” Chanukah party in the community
  • Dreidels, latkes, and gelt, an evening of Chanukah at JCU

More information is available about these and other programs on our website www.clevelandhillel.org  Photos from programs are located here https://www.facebook.com/ClevelandHillel/photos_albums

Oberlin

As the semester comes to an end, there is a tremendous amount of programming every week class is in session.  These include:

  • Weekly themed Shabbat dinner preceded by services
  • Oneg Shabbat program following dinner
  • Weekly meetings of student groups Oberlin Zionists (JAG), Student Hillel, and J Street
  • Rehearsals for CHALLaH capella, the Jewish Oberlin A Capella Group
  • The Kosher-Halal coop transitioned out of OSCA and become an independent organization under Hillel
  • Staff has lunch and dinner with students in the dining halls
  • Music recital of Lucidarium specializing in ,edieval and renaissance music
  • Oberlin professor spoke about separation of church and state at Hillel meeting
  • Movie Nights include: “Off and Running”, “The Frisco Kid, and “The Invisible Men”

 

Chanukah Roundup

Students spent the first half of Chanukah at home as it coincided with Thanksgiving break.  Prior to leaving campus and upon their return we celebrated with them through:

  • Menorah making at a Hillel meeting
  • Oberlin professor spoke about the Greeks in the Chanukah story at a Hillel meeting
  • Candle lighting in the dining halls the last three nights of Chanukah
  • Campus Chanukah party at the “Sco”

Looking forward to the CHALLaH cappella winter concert this Saturday night

More information about these and other Oberlin programs is available at http://obiejews.com/

Israel on Campus

Programs occurred regularly on multiple campuses.  They included:

  • Shulchan Ivrit weekly at Oberlin
  • Series of discussions “coffee house style” on the prospects for a two state solution at Oberlin
  • Musician Yehuda Katz gave a workshop at Cleveland Institute of Music on the Power of Music
  • Colonol (res.) Kobi Marom spoke at Cleveland State University and at Case Western Reserve University on the International crisis in Israel and its impact on Israel, the U.S. and Iran
  • “Israeli dinner” at the Hillel building at CWRU
  • Hebrew conversations at Cleveland Metro with the Israel Fellow
  • Weekly meetings of Oberlin Zionists (JAG) and J Street U
  • Orientation for winter break birthright trips for students at CWRU and Oberlin

A letter to the editor from Adena Muskin, a senior active in Hillel at CSU, appeared in The Cauldron the CSU student paper about the Prawer-Begin Plan regarding the Bedouin living in the Negev.  You can read it here http://www.csucauldron.com/opinion/letter-to-the-editor-1.3127806#.UqkaLfRDuIg

More information on these and other programs is available on our website www.clevelandhillel.org

JCLE/Graduate Students

The JCLE initiative has helped develop our programming for 21-29 year old graduate students and young professionals as a year round effort.  Recent programs include:

  • Shabbat dinners at apartments of graduate students
  • Jewish Law Student Association (JLSA) meetings at both CWRU

and CSU-Cleveland Marshall

  • Meeting with new arrivals to Cleveland
  • Jewish Medical Student Association (JMSA) meetings at CWRU
  • JCLE civic engagement brought volunteers to the Cleveland Food Bank
  • The Heart of Rock and Roll brought over 100 JCLE participants to a downtown club for an evening of partying
  • Planning for upcoming parties and sporting events

A short video explaining the importance of JCLE from the perspective of participants can be viewed at http://clevelandhillel.org/videos.htm  It is the second video on the page.  It can also be viewed on the Cleveland Hillel youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g

More information about other JCLE Programming is available www.jclecity.org

Summer Internship Program

We are preparing for the 7th year of the Summer Internship Program which will begin in June 2014.  The sixth summer of the Summer Internship Program was very successful and an article about the program including the list of the 50 interns and their placements appeared in the CJN.  It can be viewed at http://www.clevelandjewishnews.com/news/local/article_8c7e7c02-0447-11e3-af6f-001a4bcf887a.html?TNNoMobile   We heard a lot of positive feedback about the experience from both the interns and their placement supervisors.

Of the 237 interns who are program alumni during the first 6 years of the program, 130 of them have graduated college as of May 2013.  Of these 45 have returned to Cleveland to live and work for at least one year.

A short new video about the Summer Internship Program from the perspective of participants can be viewed at http://clevelandhillel.org/videos.htm  It is the first video on the page.  It can also be viewed on the Cleveland Hillel youtube channel at http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g

Remarks by two student interns at the lunch can be viewed on the Cleveland Hillel youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g  Jared’s remarks are here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RoYwFp1HVTU while Stephanie’s remarks can be seen and heard here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6NywUb6gmgc

A video of the experiences the interns had this summer can be viewed on our youtube station http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g  The SIP video is here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_c3WfMncYw0

With the help of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, the program is successfully connected university students to Cleveland and its Jewish community.  We want to thank them and our other funders for their vision, support, and commitment.

Links/Miscellaneous/Announcements

Save the Date for our 67th Annual Meeting on Thursday April 10, 2014.  Our guest speaker will be Hillel International President and CEO Eric Fingerhut

CLEVELAND HILLEL MISSION STATEMENT

Engage and empower Jewish young adults through exceptional programming and experiences that foster active Jewish life on and off campus and in the Cleveland Jewish community

CLEVELAND HILLEL VISION STATEMENT

Every Jewish young adult aspires to lifelong Jewish identity and commitment to Jewish life and community

Thank you and Donor Recognition

We thank the Jewish Federation of Cleveland for their annual allocation.  In addition to the help from our donors, funders, and stakeholders, this level of support enables us to staff and continue to grow our programming.  The Jewish Federation of Cleveland is now in the midst of its annual campaign.  To make an online donation go to the Jewish Federation of Cleveland homepage http://www.jewishcleveland.org/ and click on the donate now bar

With the help of all of you we are able to continue bringing quality programs to the undergraduate, graduate, and professional students at the universities we serve and “twenty something” young professionals in the community as we assure a brighter Jewish future

A list of donors from July 1, 2012 – June 30, 2013 is posted on our website at http://clevelandhillel.org/pdf/donor.pdf

Linked here is a short video thank you from our students for all the support we receive from our donors And now, a few words from our friends at the Cleveland Hillel Foundation

read more...

Directors Report November 2013

November 14, 2013
11 Kislev 5774

Dear Friends,

I hope this finds you well.  Since the Pew Research Religion & Public Life Project published “A Portrait of Jewish Americans” http://www.pewforum.org/2013/10/01/jewish-american-beliefs-attitudes-culture-survey/  on October 1, there has been a lot of discussion on the state of the Jewish community including what the results means, what can be learned, and what strategies need to be developed.  The work we do in cultivating Jewish life on campus and in the community is one window in this discussion.

My understanding of our role is that Hillel creates opportunities for young Jews to become “better” Jews by offering the widest array of entry points possible into Jewish life.  We answer the question of why be Jewish in today’s world, develop programs to answer the how to be Jewish, and build relationships to give meaning to Jewish experiences.

As one of my colleagues Rabbi Chaim Seidler-Feller, Executive Director, UCLA Hillel recently stated;

Hillel provides a buffet of Jewish choices that range from the intensely religious to the Jewishly worldly. Our philosophy is: “Come to Hillel to taste all the Jewish delights.  Do you want Torah and Talmud study? We have that. Do you want tikkun olam? We have that. Do you want Reform, Conservative and Orthodox prayer services? We have those, too. Do you want to learn about Jewish culture? Jewish history? Heschel? Soloveitchik? Freud? Einstein? Maimonides? We have them, as well.  Do you want Holocaust education? Israel advocacy? Leadership training? Jewish art exhibits? Conferences on important Jewish issues? Or how about just hanging out …? We offer all of that, as well as social justice projects

The point is this: Hillel … offers a broad, Big Tent Judaism that no one else offers.”

We promote the beauty and possibilities of Judaism and suggest that no matter what your background, there is a way for you to become involved.  Of course even with this wide range of opportunities not everyone becomes part of the community.  But this reality is no different than most times in the history of our People.  Staying Jewish has always been a choice, from Biblical times to the present.  Our job is to offer a menu with lots of variety so that students and their peers can find a connection to the Jewish community that is both fun and meaningful for them whether (using a food analogy) they are looking for the main course or simply a side dish.  Our obligation is to be proactive, develop options, and not sit as onlookers.

To quote Theodore Roosevelt, “It is not a critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better.  Their credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who actually strives to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, great devotions, who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end triumph of high achievement, and who at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

This is our role and, in my opinion, the best answer to the questions of where our community is going; to constantly offer opportunities that encourage students to connect in a welcoming and enriching environment.

I ask that you join and support us in this “holy” work as together we will assure a better and more dynamic Jewish future.

As always I am interested in hearing your comments and ideas.  I can be reached at [email protected] or by calling 216-231-0040.

 

With Blessings,

 

Gary Coleman
Executive Director

Cleveland Hillel Foundation reaches hundreds of students, their peers, and others monthly through a wide variety of programs and by building relationships in our five program divisions. Annually we serve over 2500 different young adults through more than 360 programs across our various campuses and divisions. Through Cleveland Hillel, students and young adults connect, experience, lead, celebrate, learn, travel, and give back while developing a dynamic, meaningful, and pluralistic community.

Special Events

Prior to Shabbat on October 11 we thanked Norma and Albert Geller for their lead gift towards the capital campaign of our new building. Over 80 students, board members, representatives from Case Western Reserve University and the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, and friends heard from Nancy Levin (CHF Board President), Barbara Snyder (President CWRU), Mat Barkan (CWRU student), and Norma and Albert Geller.  Each of them brought greetings and talked about the impact of a new building.  Pictures from the event can be viewed here https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10151722145621872.1073741838.299031916871&type=3

For more information about the capital campaign and other naming opportunities, please be in touch with me at 216-231-0040 [email protected]

“Crossroads to the Future” took place on October 16.  About 150 students, their peers, and community members participated in this networking and educational event.  Guests enjoyed a light dinner followed by a panel discussion moderated by Stephanie McHenry and featuring Dr. David Kaelber, Jonathan Leiken and Oleg Fridman. The discussion focused on a visionary look at what Cleveland of today and tomorrow will look like: how healthcare, the legal field and the business world will interrelate, and what opportunities will exist for enjoying the high quality of life in Greater Cleveland, affordable living, and the many job opportunities that will be available for young adults who choose to remain in this area after graduation.

We want to thank all of our sponsors who made the program possible.  Their names were listed in the program handed out at the October 16 event.  Pictures from the event can be viewed here.  https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10151743029541872.1073741840.299031916871&type=3

 

Israel on Campus

During November we are sponsoring a number of speakers and programs on multiple campuses.  These include:

  • Journalist Gershon Gorenberg at Oberlin on the Two State Arrangement
  • Musician Yehuda Katz at Cleveland Institute of Music on the Power of Music
  • Journalist Yoram Ettinger at John Carroll University on Israel and the Media
  • Colonol (res.) Kobi Marom at Cleveland State University and at Case Western Reserve University on the International crisis in Israel and its impact on Israel, the U.S. and Iran
  • Israel Culture Night at the Hillel building at CWRU
  • Weekly Hebrew table at Oberlin and Hebrew conversations at Cleveland Metro with the Israel Fellow
  • Memorial remembering the assassination of Yitzchak Rabin
  • Weekly meetings of Oberlin Zionists (JAG) and J Street U

More information on these and other programs is available on our website www.clevelandhillel.org

Cleveland Metro Undergrad

Hillel @ CWRU, Hillel @ CSU, Hillel @JCU

Programming continues to be strong and varied.  Highlights include:

  • Shabbat dinner preceded by services every Friday night
  • Weekly “Soups-On” Monday’s in the building
  • Weekly learning every Tuesday evening in the building
  • Café Schmooze every Tuesday and Lunch ‘n Learn every Thursday at CSU
  • Program in commemoration of Kristalnacht
  • Meeting students for “coffee dates” and lunches as well as reaching out to the residential communities
  • Monthly Shabbat meal in the community for commuter students
  • Regular meetings of Hillel Undergraduate Leadership Council (HULC) at CWRU and CSU and the start of a new Womens’ Group at CWRU
  • Apple picking outing of the new Womens’ Group
  • Cross campus Whirleyball with students from CWRU, CSU, JCU, Tri-C, and Notre Dame
  • Participated in Multi-Faith Mixer at CSU
  • Students attended the FIDF gala dinner
  • Israel movie night
  • “Disney Jewbilee” at John Carroll with their LGBT group
 

More information is available about this and other programming on our website www.clevelandhillel.org  Photos from programs are located here https://www.facebook.com/ClevelandHillel/photos_albums

Oberlin

There is a tremendous amount of programming every week class is in session.  These include:

  • Weekly themed Shabbat dinner preceded by services
  • Oneg Shabbat program following dinner
  • Weekly meetings of student groups Oberlin Zionists (JAG), Student Hillel, and J Street
  • Rehearsals for Challah Capella, the Jewish Oberlin A Capella Group
  • The Kosher-Halal coop transitioned out of OSCA and become an independent organization under Hillel
  • Staff has lunch and dinner with students in the dining halls
  • Recruiting for birthright winter trip
  • Movie Nights include: “Keeping up With The Steins” and “The Gatekeepers”
  • Hillel Meeting: Discussion of the Pew Study on American Jews
  • Making Tzedakah Boxes
  • Queer Beers featuring music from “The Shondes”
  • live music by David Hakim Band and Turkish Pastries by Chef Taieb
  • Workshop on Jewish American Identity
  • Panel on Jewish Feminism at JHouse

More information about these and other Oberlin programs is available at http://obiejews.com/

JCLE/Graduate Students

The JCLE initiative has helped develop our programming for 21-29 year old graduate students and young professionals as a year round effort.  Recent programs include:

  • Shabbat dinners at apartments of graduate students
  • Jewish Law Student Association (JLSA) meetings at both CWRU

and CSU-Cleveland Marshall

  • Meeting with new arrivals to Cleveland
  • Jewish Medical Student Association (JMSA) meetings at CWRU
  • JLSA at CWRU bagel breakfasts
  • JCLE Civic engagement helped the Ronald McDonald House
  • JCLE Happy Hour at a local eatery
  • Graduate student Shabbat with Moishe House
  • Graduate students and JCLE participate in “Crossrads to the Future”
  • Planning for upcoming parties and sporting events

A short video explaining the importance of JCLE from the perspective of participants can be viewed at http://clevelandhillel.org/videos.htm  It is the second video on the page.  It can also be viewed on the Cleveland Hillel youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g

More information about other JCLE Programming is available www.jclecity.org 

Summer Internship Program

We are preparing for the 7th year of the Summer Internship Program which will begin in June 2014.  The sixth summer of the Summer Internship Program was very successful and an article about the program including the list of the 50 interns and their placements appeared in the CJN.  It can be viewed at http://www.clevelandjewishnews.com/news/local/article_8c7e7c02-0447-11e3-af6f-001a4bcf887a.html?TNNoMobile   We heard a lot of positive feedback about the experience from both the interns and their placement supervisors.

Of the 237 interns who are program alumni during the first 6 years of the program, 130 of them have graduated college as of May 2013.  Of these 45 have returned to Cleveland to live and work for at least one year.

A short new video about the Summer Internship Program from the perspective of participants can be viewed at http://clevelandhillel.org/videos.htm  It is the first video on the page.  It can also be viewed on the Cleveland Hillel youtube channel at http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g

Remarks by two student interns at the lunch can be viewed on the Cleveland Hillel youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g  Jared’s remarks are here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RoYwFp1HVTU while Stephanie’s remarks can be seen and heard here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6NywUb6gmgc

A video of the experiences the interns had this summer can be viewed on our youtube station http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g  The SIP video is here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_c3WfMncYw0

With the help of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, the program is successfully connected university students to Cleveland and its Jewish community.  We want to thank them and our other funders for their vision, support, and commitment.

Links/Miscellaneous/Announcements

 

CLEVELAND HILLEL MISSION STATEMENT

Engage and empower Jewish young adults through exceptional programming and experiences that foster active Jewish life on and off campus and in the Cleveland Jewish community

 

CLEVELAND HILLEL VISION STATEMENT

Every Jewish young adult aspires to lifelong Jewish identity and commitment to Jewish life and community

 

Thank you and Donor Recognition

We thank the Jewish Federation of Cleveland for their annual allocation.  In addition to the help from our donors, funders, and stakeholders, this level of support enables us to staff and continue to grow our programming.  The Jewish Federation of Cleveland is now in the midst of its annual campaign.  To make an online donation to them please go to https://secure.ujcfederations.org/ft2/form.html?__id=25383

With the help of all of you we are able to continue bringing quality programs to the undergraduate, graduate, and professional students at the universities we serve and “twenty something” young professionals in the community as we assure a brighter Jewish future

A list of donors from July 1, 2012 – June 30, 2013 is posted on our website at http://clevelandhillel.org/pdf/donor.pdf

Linked here is a short video thank you from our students for all the support we receive from our donors And now, a few words from our friends at the Cleveland Hillel Foundation

read more...

Directors Report October 2013

October 10, 2014
6 Cheshvan 5774

Dear Friends,

I hope this finds you well.  We are towards the end of the second week of regular full weeks after a month filled with our Holidays; Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Sukkot, and Shmini Atzeret/Simchat Torah.  Even though the Holidays were over less than two weeks ago, it seems to me that they ended a long time ago. Now, after a month of the Holidays in Tishrei, this Jewish month of Cheshvan has no Jewish Holidays/special days so it is often referred to as Mar-Cheshvan (bitter Cheshvan).  This got me to think about what we mean when we say something is “special” or “every-day”.  Special is often identified as what occurs rarely, and gives us a “wow” as it is uplifting.  The every-day is often viewed as routine, monotonous, mundane.  It seems easy to get yourself ready for the special, but what about the every day?

Our challenge is to find a way to make the every-day special.  We know from experience that the “wow effect” wears off when it is not followed by ongoing involvement.  A birthright trip is a high, but will not be transformative if we do not follow it with continuing participation.  Hearing a wonderful speaker, going on a social justice trip, or having a conversation into the wee hours of the morning with someone can all be special moments, but if they are not followed up with ongoing activity, they will become a faint memory.

In my opinion, the “ongoing”, “regular”, “routine” and the behind the scenes work that is needed to make these happen, is the answer to how we make the every-day special.  We are blessed with opportunities to always be involved with others, learn from them, and act to make our relationships, our community, our People, and our world better.  It is challenging and will not always be successful.  But the possibilities for good should energize us to move in that direction.

Our connections with students and young adults and our ability to build relationships with them happens when we offer a wide variety of entry points and are able to enhance each person’s Jewish journey.  This is complicated because we work with a diverse community and each person comes from a different starting point.  We need to both welcome and respect this and offer each person what is “right” for them as an individual and partner in finding the best link to the community.  Our Jewish community is more diverse than in the past, and will thrive when we support the idea that each person, though different, brings value added.  In a way a community is like a mosaic where each piece is distinctive, but when put together the finished product is beautiful.

The key to being successful in our work, just as it has been for generations, is to offer opportunities to be involved and respect the uniqueness of each individual.  This needs to be an every-day occurrence, not one that happens only at special times.  This commitment is not an easy route, but it is the one that will succeed.  So as we talk about how to meet the needs of the changing Jewish community on campus, the first thing we need to do is to meet and welcome the individual students.  From that entry point anything is possible.

I ask that you join and support us in this “holy” work as together we will assure a better and more dynamic Jewish future.

As always I am interested in hearing your comments and ideas.  I can be reached at [email protected] or by calling 216-231-0040.

With Blessings,

Gary Coleman
Executive Director

 

Cleveland Hillel Foundation reaches hundreds of students, their peers, and others monthly through a wide variety of programs and by building relationships in our five program divisions. Annually we serve over 2500 different young adults through more than 360 programs across our various campuses and divisions. Through Cleveland Hillel, students and young adults connect, experience, lead, celebrate, learn, travel, and give back while developing a dynamic, meaningful, and pluralistic community

Crossroads to the Future – October 16

You are invited to join us for ”Crossroads to the Future” on Wednesday October 16.  The evening is a networking and educational event for current students and community members.  It will offer a visionary look at what Cleveland of today and tomorrow will look like: how healthcare, the legal field and the business world will interrelate, and what opportunities will exist for enjoying the high quality of life in Greater Cleveland, affordable living, and the many job opportunities that will be available for those young adults who choose to remain in this area after graduation. To register and pay please go to http://crossroadstothefuture.eventbrite.com

There is also a link on our website http://clevelandhillel.org/blog/rsvp that gives more information and directs you to online paying.

We want to thank all of our sponsors who made the program possible.  Their names were listed in an ad in the CJN last Friday and will be on the program handed out at the October 16 event.

Cleveland Metro Undergrad

Hillel @ CWRU, Hillel @ CSU, Hillel @JCU

Since the beginning of September our programming had a strong flavor of the Holidays, but we were involved with and sponsored many other programs as well.  These include:

  • Attending the Matisyahu concert in Cleveland
  • Having a booth at the Labor Day kosher Rib burn off.  Our ribs were great.
  • Starting weekly “Soups-On” Monday’s in the building
  • Weekly learning every Tuesday evening in the building
  • Café Schmooze every Tuesday and Lunch ‘n Learn every Thursday at CSU
  • Birthright registration for winter trip
  • Regular Israel movie nights on Thursdays
  • Meeting students for “coffee dates” and lunches as well as reaching out to the residential communities
  • Participate in student organization fairs at CSWRU, CSU, and JCU
  • Shabbat services and dinner every Friday night at the Hillel building and monthly in the community
  • Special Shabbat dinner for students, alumni, and family members during Homecoming at CWRU
  • Weekly meetings of Hillel Undergraduate Leadership Council (HULC) at CWRU and CSU and the start of a new Womens’ Group at CWRU

Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur 

  • Delivering a bag of “sweets” to students wishing them a Happy and Sweet New Year
  • Dinner and services for the start of Rosh Hashanah at Hillel
  • Services both days of Rosh Hashanah at Hillel
  • Tashlich after services on the first day of Rosh Hashanah
  • Dinner prior to Yom Kippur and Kol Nidre services at Hillel
  • Full day of services followed by a break-fast at Hillel
  • Offering complimentary tickets for students to area congregations

Sukkot and Simchat Torah

  • Building and decorating the Sukkah at Hillel by CWRU and at John Carroll
  • Hosting Aldofo Roitman of the Israel Museum for dinner and conversation at the Hillel Sukkah near CWRU.  Dr. Roitman was in Cleveland as a guest of Siegal Lifelong learning at CWRU.
  • “What the Hut” at John Carroll.  Here is a facebook link https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.662459433767175.1073741827.219823914697398&type=1&l=dbc92cc3c7  to pictures
  • Holiday services and lunch in the Sukkah at Hillel
  • Tea and pizza in the Sukkah at John Carroll
  • Yoga and Sushi in the Hut as Hillel
  • Cupcakes in the Sukkah at John Carroll
  • Shakshukah in the Sukkah and learn about MASA Israel trips at Hillel
  • Simchat Torah dinner in the community

More information is available about this and other programming on our website www.clevelandhillel.org Photos from programs are located (Facebook link)

Oberlin

Classes started on September 3, and there has been a tremendous amount of programming since orientation weekend.  These include:

  • Orientation Shabbat with services and almost 400 students for dinner
  • Shabbat lunch at Shimon’s house
  • Jewish and Muslim community picnic
  • Ice cream social on the first day of classes
  • Weekly meetings of the various student groups including Jewish Advocacy Group (JAG) the Oberlin Student Zionist Organization, Queer Jews and Allies, Student Hillel, J Street U, and Tzedek
  • Staff attend “Contra Dance” to engage new students
  • Tryouts for Challah Capella, the Jewish Oberlin A Capella Group
  • Participate in student organization fair
  • The Kosher-Halal coop transitioned out of OSCA and become an independent organization under Hillel
  • Staff has lunch and dinner with students in the dining halls
  • Weekly Shulchan Ivrit in a dining hall so students can practice Hebrew
  • Weekly Shabbat services followed by themed Shabbat dinners
  • Apple picking on an area farm followed by making caramel apples in a dorm
  • Recruiting for birthright winter trip
  • Lunch discussion on Judaism and environmentalism
  • Students and staff person attend J Street national conference

Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur

  • Rosh Hashnah services and dinner the first night of the Holiday (which followed the second day of classes in the semester)
  • Services both days of Rosh Hashnanah
  • Lunch for students at Shimon’s house
  • Tashlich observance during the Holiday
  • Kol Nidrei services the night of Yom Kippur
  • Services all day during Yom Kippur
  • Break Fast after Neila in the Kosher-Halal Coop

Sukkot and Simchat Torah

  • Students come for lunch and build and decorate the Sukkah outside the Kosher-Halal coop
  • Students enjoy a Holiday meal in the sukkah followed by Middle-eastern desserts and hookah in the sukkah
  • Students use the sukkah for a study break
  • Simchat Torah celebration including dancing, sushi, and chocolate

More information about these and other Oberlin programs is available at http://obiejews.com/

JCLE/Graduate Students

Our JCLE initiative has helped develop our programming for 21-29 year old graduate students and young professionals as a year round effort.  Recent programs include:

  • Shabbat dinners at apartments of graduate students
  • Participating in graduate student info fairs
  • Jewish Law Student Association (JLSA) meetings at both CWRU

and CSU-Cleveland Marshall

  • Meeting with new arrivals to Cleveland
  • JLSA at CWRU Rosh Hashanah party and bagel brunch
  • JCLE Civic engagement programs; volunteering in “Race for the Cure” and participating in “ExtravaGathering”
  • Sushi in the Sukkah for 21-29 year olds
  • Special Shabbat dinner during Sukkot
  • During Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur graduate and professional students joined services and meals at Cleveland Hillel or received complimentary tickets to area synagogues and temples.

A short video explaining the importance of JCLE from the perspective of participants can be viewed at http://clevelandhillel.org/videos.htm  It is the first video on the page.  It can also be viewed on the Cleveland Hillel youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g

More information about other JCLE Programming is available www.jclecity.org

Summer Internship Program

We are preparing for the 7th year of the Summer Internship Program which will begin in June 2014.  The sixth summer of the Summer Internship Program was very successful and an article about the program including the list of the 50 interns and their placements appeared in the CJN.  It can be viewed at http://www.clevelandjewishnews.com/news/local/article_8c7e7c02-0447-11e3-af6f-001a4bcf887a.html?TNNoMobile   We heard a lot of positive feedback about the experience from both the interns and their placement supervisors.

Remarks by two student interns at the lunch can be viewed on the Cleveland Hillel youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g  Jared’s remarks are here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RoYwFp1HVTU while Stephanie’s remarks can be seen and heard here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6NywUb6gmgc

In addition the interns experienced Cleveland and its Jewish community through:

  • Full day orientation on June 2 to learn professional etiquette, group cohesion, and setting of expectations
  • Evening program with young entrepreneurs
  • Day program in downtown Cleveland to see new developments in the city and meet some of the people responsible for these advances
  • Day program on the West Side to experience the area, spend time on a volunteer project, and learn about travel options to Israel
  • Day at Jewish institutions on the East Side including discussing Jewish Community and Israel with a panel of Rabbis and finishing at the Jewish Federation of Cleveland for a celebratory lunch with their supervisors and the donors who help make the program possible.
  • Social programs once or twice a week.  Many of the social programs were sponsored by “Showcase Cleveland” a project of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland

A video of the experiences the interns had this summer can be viewed on our youtube station http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g  The SIP video is here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_c3WfMncYw0

With this group of 50 interns the Summer Internship Program has 237 alumni through its first six years.  An increasing number of them are returning to Cleveland after graduation.

With the help of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, the program is successfully connected university students to Cleveland and its Jewish community.  We want to thank them and our other funders for their vision, support, and commitment.

New Building Initiative Update

We will be thanking Norma and Albert Geller for their lead gift towards the capital campaign of our new building tomorrow Friday October 11 at 5 PM at our current building.  After the thank you the Gellers will be joining the students for Shabbat services and dinner.  At the thank you, Nancy Levin (CHF Board President), Barbara Snyder (President CWRU), Mat Barkan (CWRU student), and Norma Geller will each bring greetings and talk about the impact of a new building.

We think this thank you will also help us move the capital campaign into its next stage as we continue to seek gifts with naming opportunities for the capital campaign and the endowment.  For more information please be in touch with me at 216-231-0040 [email protected]

Links/Miscellaneous/Announcements

CLEVELAND HILLEL MISSION STATEMENT

Engage and empower Jewish young adults through exceptional programming and experiences that foster active Jewish life on and off campus and in the Cleveland Jewish community

 

CLEVELAND HILLEL VISION STATEMENT

Every Jewish young adult aspires to lifelong Jewish identity and commitment to Jewish life and community

 

Fundraising Request, Thank you, and Donor Recognition

Please consider partnering with us by making a donation on line at (Network for Good) or by mailing a check to:

Cleveland Hillel Foundation
11291 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland OH 441

If you are interested in learning about special funding opportunities please look at our web site or contact Barbara at [email protected]

We thank the Jewish Federation of Cleveland for their annual allocation.  In addition to the help from our donors, funders, and stakeholders, this level of support enables us to staff and continue to grow our programming.

With the help of all of you we are able to continue bringing quality programs to the undergraduate, graduate, and professional students at the universities we serve and “twenty something” young professionals in the community as we assure a brighter Jewish future

A list of donors from July 1, 2012 – June 30, 2013 is posted on our website at http://clevelandhillel.org/pdf/donor.pdf

Linked here is a short video thank you from our students for all the support we receive from our donors And now, a few words from our friends at the Cleveland Hillel Foundation

Directors Report August 2013

August 29, 2013

23 Elul 5773
Dear Friends,

Beginnings and renewal!  This is what comes to mind both with the beginning of a new academic year and as we are about to celebrate Rosh Hashana and usher in 5774.  As classes began earlier this week on many campuses including Case Western Reserve University and Cleveland State University while at other campuses including Oberlin College and John Carroll University classes will start next week, we have the privilege to meet new students and reacquaint ourselves with those returning.

It is our charge to build relationships and programs that provide each of them with an opportunity to grow in their individual Jewish journey while also becoming part of a diverse and pluralistic Jewish community.  How do we simultaneously support the unique needs of every individual while also challenging each of them to become integrated into a community?  After all there is a natural tension between self-interest and doing for others.  This continues to be a significant challenge for our People and simultaneously is also the key to our survival.  One of our educational goal needs to clearly state that it is in each person’s self-interest to be involved in a community and care about the future.

According to our tradition Rosh Hashanah celebrates the birth of human beings.  While coming from the same source each of us is different.  Gd has given us the freedom of choice so we are able to make autonomous decisions.  Individually, we often think we know what is correct and know that our opinion is the right one.  Yet when we become part of a community we integrate with others who think differently than us and also think their opinion is the correct one.  How can we navigate this?  First we hopefully learn that just as we are passionate in what we believe in, others are just as passionate about their beliefs.  Then we realize that if we want to build a community we need to compromise.  By celebrating what we agree upon and respecting our differences we have the opportunity to develop a dynamic and encompassing community.  If we cannot do this then we have chaos.

As we look at the world today there is much to be concerned about as in many places there is no willingness to compromise and too many nations are imploding as a result.  There is also a lot to celebrate as in even more places there are continuous improvements in the conditions people live in and their willingness to work together.  Sometimes this is forgotten as we focus on the problems.  I am not suggesting that we ignore the difficulties, but I think we can also rejoice in the successes.

With the start of a new academic year and as we are about to celebrate Rosh Hashanah may the sounds of the shofar remind us, as they have done for thousands of years, that each of us individually can make a world of difference and that by working together we will make the world a better place.

As an aside I think this 5 minute clip http://safeshare.tv/w/OXHZUxUXXN  called Tchaikovsky Flashwaltz at Hadassah Hospital shows what can happen when a community comes together.  Enjoy!

As always I am interested in hearing your comments and ideas.  I can be reached at [email protected] or by calling 216-231-0040.

Best wishes for a Shana Tova and Metuka, a Sweet, Healthy and Happy New Year,

With Blessings,

 

Gary Coleman

Executive Director

Cleveland Hillel Foundation programs reach hundreds of students, their peers, and others monthly through a wide variety of programs in our five program divisions.

Annually we reach over 2500 different young adults through more than 360 programs across our various campuses and divisions. Through Cleveland Hillel, students and young adults connect, experience, lead, celebrate, learn, travel, and give back while developing a dynamic, meaningful, and pluralistic community.

 

Cleveland Metro Undergrad

Hillel @ CWRU, Hillel @ CSU, Hillel @JCU

With the beginning of and in preparation for the fall semester we sponsored and were involved with many programs.  These include:

  • As part of their training we hosted the RA’s of CWRU to talk about religious life on campus
  • During CWRU orientation we hosted incoming students and family members in the building and met them at organizational fairs
  • Facilitated “Dinner and Dialogue” so students could learn about the religions of their classmates
  • Café Schmooze and Lunch ‘n Learn started at CSU
  • Shabbat services and dinner at Cleveland Hillel
  • Opening barbecue prior to the first day of classes
  • Welcome back evening of Sushi

We will be celebrating Rosh Hashana next week with services and meals starting Wednesday night.  And of course Yom Kippur and Sukkot will also be celebrated on campus through services, meals, and other programs. More information is available about this and other programming on our website www.clevelandhillel.org Photos from programs are located (Facebook link)

Oberlin 

Classes start September 3, but in advance the staff is involved in many opportunities.  These include:

  • Working with the RA’s and introducing them to Jewish life on campus
  • Conversations with the administration to develop a framework for discussions on campus of sensitive and controversial issues
  • Meeting new students during move in days by helping them with the move
  • Shabbat dinner every Friday night following services begins this week
  • Challah the Jewish A capella group will start rehearsals with the start of classes next week
  • Opening barbecue Sunday of Labor Day weekend

Rosh Hashana will be celebrated next week with services and meals starting Wednesday night.  And of course Yom Kippur and Sukkot will also be celebrated on campus through services, meals, and other programs.  More information is available about this and other Oberlin programs at http://obiejews.com/

JCLE/Graduate Students

Our JCLE initiative has helped develop our programming for 21-29 year old graduate students and young professionals as a year round effort.  Recent programs include:

  • “Jooze Cruise” last week on the Nautica Queen  JStyle covered it here http://jstylemagazine.com/jcles-jooze-cruise/
  • Law student welcome event at a local bar
  • Shabbat dinners at apartments of graduate students
  • Participating in graduate student orientations
  • Meeting with new arrivals to Cleveland
  • Planning for next civic engagement programs

For Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur graduate and professional students can join services and meals at Cleveland Hillel or receive complimentary tickets to area synagogues and temples.  And of course Sukkot will also be celebrated with a number of programs.

A short video explaining the importance of JCLE from the perspective of participants can be viewed at http://clevelandhillel.org/videos.htm  It is the first video on the page.  It can also be viewed on the Cleveland Hillel youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g

More information about other JCLE Programming is available www.jclecity.org

 

Summer Internship Program

The sixth summer of the Summer Internship Program ended on August 9 with a celebratory lunch for the interns, their supervisors, and donors to the program at the Jewish Federation of Cleveland.  An article about the program including the list of the 50 interns and their placements recently appeared in the CJN.  It can be viewed at http://www.clevelandjewishnews.com/news/local/article_8c7e7c02-0447-11e3-af6f-001a4bcf887a.html?TNNoMobile    We heard much positive feedback from both the interns and their placements.

Remarks by two student interns at the lunch can be viewed on the Cleveland Hillel youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g  Jared’s remarks are here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RoYwFp1HVTU while Stephanie’s remarks can be seen and heard here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6NywUb6gmgc

In addition the interns experienced Cleveland and its Jewish community through:

  • Full day orientation on June 2 to learn professional etiquette, group cohesion, and setting of expectations
  • Evening program with young entrepreneurs
  • Day program in downtown Cleveland to see new developments in the city and meet some of the people responsible for these advances
  • Day program on the West Side to experience the area, spend time on a volunteer project, and learn about travel options to Israel
  • Day at Jewish institutions on the East Side including discussing Jewish Community and Israel with a panel of Rabbis and finishing at the Jewish Federation of Cleveland for a celebratory lunch with their supervisors and the donors who help make the program possible.
  • Social programs once or twice a week

A video of the experiences the interns had this summer can be viewed on our youtube station http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfhc3IknSxq1gIlGTmb-o-g  The SIP video is here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_c3WfMncYw0

With this group of 50 interns the Summer Internship Program has 237 alumni through its first six years.  An increasing number of them are returning to Cleveland after graduation.

With the help of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, the program is successfully connected university students to Cleveland and its Jewish community.  We want to thank them and our other funders for their vision, support, and commitment.

Naming of New Hillel Building

As mentioned in my July report, Cleveland Hillel President Nancy K. Levin sent out the following message.      

“It is with the great pleasure and heartfelt thanks that I announce the lead gift to the new Hillel building has been donated by Norma and Albert Geller.  The Gellers are CWRU alumni and involved in the Cleveland Jewish community.  Many thanks go to the Gellers, their family, and to Brian Sokol, Chuck Miller, Bruce Loessin and, of course, President Barbara Snyder, all of Case Western Reserve University.  We could not have secured this gift without them.

What does this mean for all of us? It means that our dreams of creating a new home for the students of the Cleveland Hillel Foundation are closer to becoming a reality.  We are stepping up the campaign into high gear.  We will continue to work with CWRU, the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, and our Cleveland Hillel Board of Directors and Past Presidents, as well as engaging our honorary committee and others for assistance in making solicitations.  At this point, we will develop a calendar of targeted dates and next steps.  As of this moment, we do not have a construction start date because we need to raise additional monies before we are shovel-ready.  Stay tuned.”

In addition, I would like to thank Nancy Levin, Harvey Siegel, and Zach Paris who have put untold hours of heart and soul into this project.  

Jewish Alumni Network at CWRU

The Jewish Alumni Network welcomes you back to campus for Homecoming, September 26-29, where the Network will be hosting three events:

  • Shabbat Dinner
    • September 27,  6 to 9 p.m. at Cleveland Hillel (11291 Euclid Ave.)
    • Havdalah Service and Reception
      • September 28,  7:30 to 9 p.m. at Cleveland Hillel (11291 Euclid Ave.)
      • Brunch Planning Meeting
        • September 29, 10 to 11:30 a.m. at the Alumni House (11310 Juniper Rd.)

Enjoy brunch with fellow Jewish alumni and help the Network plan for the next year of events and programs. Share your ideas on how to grow and develop the Network in the coming year.

Please register for these events on the Homecoming site case.edu/homecoming.

We look forward to seeing you!

About the Jewish Alumni Network:

The Jewish Alumni Network—a collaboration between the Alumni Association of CWRU and the Cleveland Hillel Foundation—was formed to establish relationships between current and future CWRU Jewish alumni through networking and programming.  The Network helps Jewish alumni reconnect with old friends and volunteer on behalf of the university and Hillel.

Alumni Networks at CWRU work collaboratively with The Alumni Association to contribute to leadership development, advocacy and program activities.  The Jewish Alumni Network gives you the opportunity to engage with other alumni, network socially and professionally and stay connected to CWRU and Hillel through a common identity.

Links/Miscellaneous/Announcements/Upcoming

  • CROSSROADS TO THE FUTURE - Wednesday evening, October 16, from 5:45 P.M. until 7:45, the Cleveland Hillel Foundation will host a Forum at the Cleveland Natural History Museum. Bringing together students and professionals from the areas of law, health, and business the program will be a visionary session, focusing on the future of life in Cleveland and how these professions will interact in the future.
  • You are invited to visit our booth at the All Kosher rib burn off on Labor Day

 

CLEVELAND HILLEL MISSION STATEMENT

Engage and empower Jewish young adults through exceptional programming and experiences that foster active Jewish life on and off campus and in the Cleveland Jewish community

 

CLEVELAND HILLEL VISION STATEMENT

Every Jewish young adult aspires to lifelong Jewish identity and commitment to Jewish life and community

 

Fundraising Request, Thank you, and Donor Recognition

Please consider partnering with us by making a donation on line at (Network for Good) or by mailing a check to:

Cleveland Hillel Foundation
11291 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland OH 441

If you are interested in learning about special funding opportunities please look at our web site or contact Barbara at [email protected]

We thank the Jewish Federation of Cleveland for their annual allocation.  In addition to the help from our donors, funders, and stakeholders, this level of support enables us to staff and continue to grow our programming.

With the help of all of you we are able to continue bringing quality programs to the undergraduate, graduate, and professional students at the universities we serve and “twenty something” young professionals in the community as we assure a brighter Jewish future

A list of donors from July 1, 2011 – June 30, 2012 is posted on our website at http://clevelandhillel.org/pdf/donor.pdf  The list of July 1, 2012 – June 30, 2013 donors will be on the website by the end of September.

Linked here is a short video thank you from our students for all the support we receive from our donors And now, a few words from our friends at the Cleveland Hillel Foundation

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6NywUb6gmgc

read more...

Director’s Report July 2013

I hope this finds you well.  Yesterday we celebrated a minor Holiday on the Jewish calendar Tu B’Av (the 15th of Av) which in Israel is known as Chag Ha’Ahava (The Holiday of Love) and last week we commemorated the fast day of Tisha B’Av (the 9th of Av) which is the day the First and Second Temple were destroyed.  In my opinion there is a connection between these two days that affect our work.

I think that one of the reasons we celebrate Tu B’Av and it is called the Holiday of Love is because in Biblical times (in the book of Judges) Tu B’Av is the day that it became possible for weddings to occur between people from different tribes.  Upon entering Israel people only married within their tribe to assure the land would remain inherited within their tribal area.  After a few generations there was a realization that for the Children of Israel to become a Nation there was need to allow people to marry between tribes.  Hence, Chag Ha’Ahava (The Holiday of Love) becomes a key to nation building.

According to the story in the Talmud a direct cause of the destruction of the second temple was because a person having a party wanted to invite Kamtza (Joe) to his party and instead the messenger gave the invitation to Bar Kamtza (John).  Joe was a friend of the party host, but John was his enemy.  When John showed up the host refused to let him stay and the other guests did not protest the host’s behavior.  As a result John went to the Roman authorities and helped them with a plan that led to the destruction of the Temple.  While I do not know whether this actually occurred, I think the story informs us of the importance of welcoming all guests into our house.

In our work with students on campus and young adults in the community (18-29) we are charged with building an inclusive and welcoming Jewish community.  We are to accept all Jewish students no matter their background or opinions and work with them to help them on their individual Jewish journey while connecting them to the Jewish community both on and off campus.  We know that at times there will be students whose opinions on Judaism (Jews for Jesus for example) and Israel (do not support the right of Israel to be a Jewish State for example) will place them outside our community.  However we can still talk with them while clearly stating that we do not support their opinions and their perspectives are outside the bounds of our community.

This is the lesson of Tisha B’Av and Tu B’Av.  In order to create a nation we need to welcome everyone while being clear what it means to be part of our community/People.  This perspective needs to go beyond Hillel and I want to take this opportunity to ask activists, leaders, teachers, and rabbis from all organizations and denominations to work with us on campus.  Our job is to reach out to all students and develop a dynamic, passionate, and pluralistic Jewish community. Your job whether you are Conservative, Orthodox, Reconstructionist, Reform, Post-Denominational or Other, is to partner with us to present choices to the students.  By working together we will assure a better Jewish future.

As always I am interested in hearing your comments and ideas.  I can be reached at [email protected] or by calling 216-231-0040.

With Blessings,

Gary Coleman
Executive Director

 

Cleveland Hillel Foundation programs reach hundreds of students, their peers, and others monthly through a wide variety of programs in our five program divisions.

Annually we reach over 2500 different young adults through more than 360 programs across our various campuses and divisions. Through Cleveland Hillel, students and young adults connect, build relationships, experience, lead, celebrate, learn, travel, and give back while developing a dynamic, meaningful, and pluralistic community.

 

Naming of New Hillel Building
Late last week Cleveland Hillel President Nancy K. Levin sent out the following message.       

 “It is with the great pleasure and heartfelt thanks that I announce the lead gift to the new Hillel building has been donated by Norma and Albert Geller.  The Gellers are CWRU alumni and involved in the Cleveland Jewish community.  Many thanks go to the Gellers, their family, and to Brian Sokol, Chuck Miller, Bruce Loessin and, of course, President Barbara Snyder, all of Case Western Reserve University.  We could not have secured this gift without them.

What does this mean for all of us? It means that our dreams of creating a new home for the students of the Cleveland Hillel Foundation are closer to becoming a reality.  We are stepping up the campaign into high gear.  We will continue to work with CWRU, the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, and our Cleveland Hillel Board of Directors and Past Presidents, as well as engaging our honorary committee and others for assistance in making solicitations.  At this point, we will develop a calendar of targeted dates and next steps.  As of this moment, we do not have a construction start date because we need to raise additional monies before we are shovel-ready.  Stay tuned.”

In addition, I would like to thank Nancy Levin, Harvey Siegel, and Zach Paris who have put untold hours of heart and soul into this project.  

 Summer Internship Program

 Now in its sixth summer, the Summer Internship Program started June 3 and is in its final weeks as the program will end on August 9.  Fifty interns are currently placed at businesses and non-profits throughout the area.  During the program they are receiving a superior professional growth experience.  We have heard much positive feedback from both the interns and their placements.  In addition they are experiencing Cleveland and its Jewish community through a:

 

  • Full day orientation on June 2 to learn professional etiquette, group cohesion, and setting of expectations
  • Evening program with young entrepreneurs
  • Day program in downtown Cleveland to see new developments in the city and meet some of the people responsible for these advances
  • Day program on the West Side to experience the area, spend time on a volunteer project, and learn about travel options to Israel
  • Day at Jewish institutions on the East Side including discussing Jewish Community and Israel with a panel of Rabbis and finishing at the Jewish Federation of Cleveland for a celebratory lunch with their supervisors and the donors who help make the program possible.

The social programs that were organized for the students are listed under undergraduate programming.

With this group of 50 interns the Summer Internship Program will have 237 alumni through its first six years.  Over 25% of the program alumni who graduated university through May 2012 moved back to Cleveland after graduation.

With the help of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, the program is successfully connected university students to Cleveland and its Jewish community.  We want to thank them and our other funders for their vision, support, and commitment.

An article about the experience of a summer intern last summer can be read here http://www.clevelandjewishnews.com/features/community/article_a04ca420-2f63-11e2-9842-001a4bcf887a.html

 

JCLE/Graduate Students

 Our JCLE initiative has helped develop our programming for 21-29 year old graduate students and young professionals as a year round effort.  Recent programs include:

 

  • Civic Engagement: Race for the Place 5K followed by brunch at a local restaurant
  • Summer Soiree (Co-sponsored with YLD)  brought together over 275 participants
  • Tour of area Ohio wineries and vineyards
  • Happy Hour at a local night spot

A short video explaining the importance of JCLE from the perspective of participants can be viewed at http://clevelandhillel.org/videos.htm  It is the first video on the page.

More information about other JCLE Programming is available www.jclecity.org

Undergraduate Programming

 We continue to work with the administration at Case Western Reserve University, Oberlin College, Cleveland State University, John Carroll University and other Schools in preparation for the upcoming academic year and meeting the new students.

In addition, through our partnership with Showcase Cleveland of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland and our Summer Internship Program these social programs for Jewish undergrads in Cleveland have been sponsored recently:

 

  • Trivia Night/Happy Hour at a local restaurant
  • Ice cream evening at a local ice cream parlor
  • Shabbat dinner at Metro parks
  • Bowling night
  • Fondue evening at a local restaurant
  • Movie night “The Internship”
  • Cleveland Indians baseball game

More information about Cleveland Metro programs is available on our website www.clevelandhillel.org Photos from programs are located (Facebook link)

More information about Oberlin programs is available at http://obiejews.com/

Links/Miscellaneous/Announcements

  • As you likely know Eric Fingerhut has been named the new President and CEO of Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life.  We wish Eric much success in his new position as he will work to move the Hillel movement to new heights.  Because of Eric’s Cleveland roots and experience many of you already know Eric and as my colleague Jen Chestnut stated; “He’s a visionary leader, a dynamic speaker … he would be a good role model for university students.”  You can view a youtube video with a message from Eric here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gvm1lWcCHck&feature=youtu.be
  • We are pleased to announce that Barbara Rosenthal started on June 1 as our new development director.  Barbara is responsible for fundraising for programs designed to strengthen Jewish identity and continuity.  We are confident that she will add greatly to Cleveland Hillel as she joined us with decades of experience both professionally as a fundraiser and as a lay leader in Jewish organizations locally and nationally.
  • Earlier this month Toby Lausin started working as Cleveland Metro Jewish Student Life Coordinator.  We wish Toby much success as she works with increasing numbers of undergraduate students at Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland State University, and John Carroll University along with the other Metro campuses.
  • We extend a special thank you to our Israel Fellow Lior Yafe for the wonderful year he has spent with us that is coming to an end later this week.  He is leaving his imprint on all parts of Cleveland Hillel making us a much better organization.  We wish him much continued success in all he does as he returns to Israel.  Our next Israel Fellow Guy Cohen will be starting next month.  He will be arriving in Cleveland after Hillel Institute.

 CLEVELAND HILLEL MISSION STATEMENT

 Engage and empower Jewish young adults through exceptional programming and experiences that foster active Jewish life on and off campus and in the Cleveland Jewish community

 

CLEVELAND HILLEL VISION STATEMENT

 Every Jewish young adult aspires to lifelong Jewish identity and commitment to Jewish life and community

 Fundraising Request, Thank you, and Donor Recognition

Please consider partnering with us by making a donation on line at (Network for Good) or by mailing a check to:

Cleveland Hillel Foundation
11291 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland OH 441

If you are interested in learning about special funding opportunities please look at our web site or contact Barbara Rosenthal [email protected]

We thank the Jewish Federation of Cleveland for their annual allocation.  In addition to the help from our donors, funders, and stakeholders, this level of support enables us to staff and continue to grow our programming.

With the help of all of you we are able to continue bringing quality programs to the undergraduate, graduate, and professional students at the universities we serve and “twenty something” young professionals as we assure a brighter Jewish future

A list of donors from July 1, 2011 – June 30, 2012 is posted on our website at http://clevelandhillel.org/pdf/donor.pdf

Thank Gd there have been hundreds of donors during the year and we wanted to find a way to thank you here, but we decided the best professional way of doing this is through the Annual Report which is ready in the Fall of every year and includes the donors of the previous fiscal year (July 1, – June 30).

Linked here is a short video thank you from our students for all the support we receive from our donors And now, a few words from our friends at the Cleveland Hillel Foundation

Directors Report May 2013

May 29, 2013
20 Sivan 5773

 

Dear Friends,

I hope this finds you well. With Oberlin College’s commencement this past Sunday and with the commencement at Case Western Reserve University (CWRU), Cleveland State University (CSU), John Carroll University (JCU) and other colleges and universities we serve earlier this month, the academic year is over. Our Summer Internship Program is starting next week, so our program year continues as Cleveland Hillel is a year round program center.

This has been both a wonderful and challenging year. As you have read in these monthly reports, the number of Jewish students attending CWRU is increasing and this has brought a positive effect to our programming, Oberlin continues to bring cutting edge programs to campus, programming at CSU is more consistent, our student leader at JCU is again student leader of the year, JCLE/Graduate Programming is reaching increasing numbers, and our Summer Internship Program is entering its sixth summer and reaching more participants. Because of the increased number of Jewish students on campus and the numbers we are reaching we are also able to (co)sponsor a wider variety of programs, bring value added, and have greater impact both on campus and in the community. Also, with the help of CWRU and the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, a new building to better serve Jewish students is coming closer to reality.

On a personal level this year has been challenging as for family reasons we could no longer host students for Shabbat dinners in our home. Our fundraising goal has been a challenge, and with your help and a lot of hard work by a lot of people we will reach it by the end of next month. Finally I misread a situation at Oberlin where a number of students from Students for a Free Palestine (SFP) worked on a divestment campaign. They brought a request to the Oberlin College Student Senate asking that the senate pass a resolution that asks the college to divest from Israel. Even though the decision of the senate was to reject the connection to BDS and the passed resolution mentions six specific Israeli companies that work on the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and Gaza, I made a double mistake by not giving enough support to the pro-Israel students who worked against the resolution and not keeping the Cleveland Jewish Federation and Hillel leadership abreast of the situation. More can be read about this situation in the press release Cleveland Hillel circulated after the May 5 vote http://clevelandhillel.org/pdf/doc_on_divestment.pdf as well as a letter written by pro-Israel students at Oberlin explaining the problem with divestment that appeared in the campus newspaper, Oberlin Review, http://clevelandhillel.org/pdf/dangers_of_divestment.pdf We are also rededicating ourselves to stronger Israel education when classes resume at Oberlin in the fall.

This mistake forced me to rethink about how I, as a Hillel director, should deal with controversial issues. Also, how should we respond when students develop an initiative that we find troubling and problematic.

While we should not be everything to everybody and the existence of Israel as a Jewish State should never be questioned, how this is presented within Hillel can be nuanced. While we support Israel as a Jewish State, I am sure not all of us agree on numerous issues regarding Israel including how the settlements effect the peace process, how to assure equal access to a minyan at the Western Wall, whether the “ultra-orthodox” and/or Israeli Arabs should serve in the Israel Defense Forces, the social policies of the country, and what to do about the cost of housing. In any of these topics, and others, I would hope that a Hillel program will focus on the complexities of these issues and that there might be more than one answer.

In essence that is my understanding of our goal in developing a Jewish community on campus and elsewhere; a community is a place where we celebrate what we agree upon and where we respect our differences. So as an organization we support and celebrate Israel as a Jewish State yet we likely disagree about what does a Jewish State mean and how do any of us living outside of Israel impact it. I also think this becomes nuanced depending on the campus.

So on a campus with a large number of liberal Jews, like Oberlin, who have great concerns with the way Israel treats the Palestinians we should not promote or co-sponsor a program that suggests individuals or groups should boycott, sanction, and divest (BDS) from Israel, but we likely need to engage those students in conversation. And the speakers we bring to campus while supporting the right of Israel to be a Jewish State, should also identify with the suffering of the Palestinians and support a two state solution.  Where those boundaries are going to be and how the states are going to thrive side by side is an issue for respectful discussion and most likely disagreement.

Of course discussions at Hillel should not only be focused on Israel.  We should be convening programs on all matters of Jewish life that impact our People.  By doing this I believe we will create the opportunity for more Jews to be involved in their Jewish journey and become passionate and committed to Jewish life.

As always I am interested in hearing your comments and ideas. I can be reached at [email protected] or by calling 216-231-0040.

With Blessings,

Gary Coleman
Executive Director

Cleveland Hillel Foundation programs reach hundreds of students, their peers, and others monthly through a wide variety of programs in our five program divisions.

Annually we serve over 2500 different young adults through more than 300 programs across our various campuses and divisions. Through Cleveland Hillel, students and young adults connect, experience, lead, celebrate, learn, travel, and give back while developing a dynamic, meaningful, and pluralistic community.

Cleveland Metro Undergrad

Hillel @ CWRU, Hillel @ CSU, Hillel @JCU

During the last few weeks of the semester we sponsored these programs.

  • Café Schmooze and Lunch ‘n Learn at CSU
  • Israel Movie Night at Cleveland Hillel Building
  • Shabbat services and dinner at Cleveland Hillel
  • Soups On” at Cleveland Hillel
  • Student leader of the year at JCU
  • Special “Brinner” dinner at Cleveland Hillel
  • Participate in Study Over during finals at CWRU
  • Orientation for students who left for a birthright trip to Israel this week
  • IsraelFest” at KSL Oval on CWRU campus
  • Elect student leaders for next academic year
  • Hebrew 1×1 with the Israel Fellow
  • Students use Hillel building as study center during finals
  • Students participate in U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum luncheon

More information about other Cleveland Metro programs is available on our website www.clevelandhillel.org Photos from programs are located (Facebook link)

Oberlin

  • Shabbat dinner every Friday night following services
  • Multiple themed Shabbatot including brisket Shabbat, thank you to Malachi, a capella Shabbat, senior Shabbat, and alumni Shabbat
  • Oneg Shabbat following dinner
  • Occasional Shabbat morning services followed by lunch
  • Challah the Jewish A capella group rehearses regularly and started performing on campus
  • Hillel student meeting titled “Anti Semitism at Oberlin, Divestment the Last Straw?”
  • JStreet meeting to discuss divestment
  • Lag B’Omer Bonfire in Tappan Square with S’mores and music and BBQ at JHouse
  • Student groups elect their student leadership for next year
  • Students read and discuss an article about “Women at the Wall” written by Oberlin Professor Shulamit Magnus for Yom Yerushalayim
  • Students attend Jewish and Muslim community picnic at the Kosher-Halal coop
  • Students came to the finals week study break in the Hillel office
  • During finals week students came to Shimon’s house for Shavuot desserts and learning
  • Sunday brunch at Shimon’s house for Alumni and Graduating Seniors

The troubling issue of the decision of the Oberlin College Student Senate regarding divestment from six Israel companies was discussed in the executive director’s column. To read the press release from Cleveland Hillel http://clevelandhillel.org/pdf/doc_on_divestment.pdf and the article from pro-Israel students published in the Oberlin Review http://clevelandhillel.org/pdf/dangers_of_divestment.pdf

More information about other Oberlin programs is available at http://obiejews.com/

JCLE/Graduate Students

  • JCLE College Pride Happy Hour at a local brewery
  • JCLE/YLD Summer Soiree host committee happy hour
  • Graduate student Shabbat dinner every other week
  • IsraelFest” on CWRU campus
  • Elections for leadership of JLSA and JMSA
  • Participate in U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum luncheon
  • Prepare for June civic engagement program
  • Planning of June activities, and summer programs

A new short video explaining the importance of JCLE from the perspective of participants can be viewed at http://clevelandhillel.org/videos.htm It is the first video on the page.

More information about other JCLE Programming is available www.jclecity.org

Summer Internship Program

With the Summer Internship Program starting with orientation on June 2 and placements on June 3 we finished the matching process between interns and jobs. We are excited that the sixth summer of the program is shaping up to be another great experience. A number of changes were made as we continually improve the program.

This month we proclaimed and celebrated the five year anniversary of the Summer Internship Program. The program has 187 alumni and of the 89 who graduated university as of May 2012, over 25% moved back to Cleveland after graduation. The Program is successfully connected university students to Cleveland and its Jewish community.

We want to thank our funders, especially the Jewish Federation of Cleveland (Let My People Know Cleveland) for the support and commitment.

An article about the experience of a summer intern last summer can be read here http://www.clevelandjewishnews.com/features/community/article_a04ca420-2f63-11e2-9842-001a4bcf887a.html

Links/Miscellaneous/Announcements/Upcoming

CLEVELAND HILLEL MISSION STATEMENT

 Engage and empower Jewish young adults through exceptional programming and experiences that foster active Jewish life on and off campus and in the Cleveland Jewish community

CLEVELAND HILLEL VISION STATEMENT

Every Jewish young adult aspires to lifelong Jewish identity and commitment to Jewish life and community

Fundraising Request, Thank you, and Donor Recognition

Please consider partnering with us by making an end of fiscal year donation on line at (Network for Good) or by mailing a check to:

Cleveland Hillel Foundation
11291 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland OH 441

If you are interested in learning about special funding opportunities please look at our web site or contact me at [email protected]

We thank the Jewish Federation of Cleveland for their annual allocation.  In addition to the help from our donors, funders, and stakeholders, this level of support enables us to staff and continue to grow our programming.

With the help of all of you we are able to continue bringing quality programs to the undergraduate, graduate, and professional students at the universities we serve and “twenty something” young professionals as we assure a brighter Jewish future

A list of donors from July 1, 2011 – June 30, 2012 is posted on our website at http://clevelandhillel.org/pdf/donor.pdf

Thank Gd there have been hundreds of donors during this fiscal year and we wanted to find a way to thank you here, but we decided the best professional way of doing this is through the Annual Report which is ready in October of every year and includes the donors of the previous fiscal year (July 1, – June 30).

Linked here is a short video thank you from our students for all the support we receive from our donors And now, a few words from our friends at the Cleveland Hillel Foundation

Directors Report March 2013

March 13, 2013

2 Nisan 5773

Dear Friends,

With Pesach approaching in less than two weeks, we are about to celebrate the Holiday that celebrates our freedom from slavery and our becoming a Nation.  One of the most important tasks each of us has is taking part in “nation building” helping to make our Jewish People into a vibrant and inclusive community based on our heritage and constantly renewing ourselves.  But how do we do this and does it involve all of us? This has been an issue since our ancestors left Egypt.  The Torah tells us of the Exodus of our People from slavery in Egypt.  The Rabbis in the Talmud however explain that 80% of the Children of Israel were killed in Egypt during the plaque of darkness so when the Torah states in Exodus that the Jews left Egypt “Chamushim” (Chapter 13, Verse 18) they say this means that only one fifth left.  According to the Rabbis the rest were killed because they had assimilated.  Assimilation and anti-Semitism have been a constant issue for our People ever since and many people born as Jews have chosen to leave throughout history.

We now live in a world where young Jews can choose freely if they want to be Jewish or not.  Our role is to offer reasons that people should stay Jewish through celebrating all that is special about us, developing pride in what we have accomplished, and educating our young People so they will be knowledgeable and active Jews.  It is likely that not all of them will stay Jewish, but I think more will stay Jewish by choice in this generation than by force in previous generations.  To be successful in reaching this goal we need good role models; individuals who know how to interact with this generation and have the content to lead, as well as people who have the ability to support this renaissance of Jewish life.

In my opinion Hillel in general and Cleveland Hillel in particular serves our People by offering young Jews opportunities to develop their own Jewish journey and by stimulating their interest in making a life-long commitment to Judaism.  This is the wider role of Hillel.  Our agenda is focused on working with Jewish undergraduate, graduate, and professional students and their peers.  We offer them opportunities to strengthen their Jewish identity, their connection to the Jewish community, the State of Israel, our People and our traditions.  In this way they will become better Jews and noble citizens of the world.

In order to accomplish this we have recently refreshed our mission statement which now reads “Engage and empower Jewish young adults through exceptional programming and experiences that foster active Jewish life on and off campus and in the Cleveland Jewish community.

This can occur in an environment where we are supportive of one another and agree that there is no one specific way to be Jewish but a mosaic of approaches.  By working together we will be successful.  A friend of mine recently sent me this story of Rabbi Avraham Isaac Kook, the first modern Chief Rabbi of Palestine/Erertz Yisrael

One Tu B’Shvat Rav Kook visited a kindergarten. The teacher took the children out into the adjoining field, and brought a chair for the Rabbi to sit in and observe. He watched as the youngsters, each having been given a small plant, dug holes in the dirt and lovingly planted their seedlings in the earth.  Suddenly, Rav Kook began to cry. “What is the matter?” asked the
shocked teacher.  Rav Kook replied, “Everyone has something to plant, but I have nothing!”

The teacher was taken aback. “But we didn’t think the great rabbi would want to get his hands dirty,” she said.  Rav Kook then bent down upon the ground and helped one of the children smooth out the ground and carefully place the seedling. “If you want to build a country,” said Rav Kook, looking up at the teacher, “then you had better be prepared to get off your chair, and get your hands dirty.”

Let us together get off our chairs and get our hands dirty.  Nation building is the opportunity and privilege we have every day in our work.  As I have previously mentioned, this is “holy work” and because of the work of our Hillel and hundreds of other Hillels throughout the world, as well as all who offer Jewish opportunities based on our heritage, pluralism, and respect of other ideas, we are assuring a better more vibrant Jewish future.

As always I am interested in hearing your comments and ideas.  I can be reached at [email protected] or by calling 216-231-0040.

With Blessings,

Gary Coleman

Executive Director

Cleveland Hillel Foundation programs reach hundreds of students, their peers, and others monthly through a wide variety of programs in our five program divisions.

Annually we serve over 2500 different young adults through more than 300 programs across our various campuses and divisions. Through Cleveland Hillel, students and young adults connect, experience, lead, celebrate, learn, travel, and give back while developing a dynamic, meaningful, and pluralistic community.

Annual Meeting April 17

You are all invited to our 66th Annual Meeting on Wednesday April 17 at the Hillel Building.  In addition to election of officers and members of the board, celebrating student achievements, thanking outgoing board members, and honoring Glenn Nicholls CWRU retiring Vice President of Student Affairs, the meeting will feature a dialogue with Ari Maron and Peter Rubin about their developments in our neighborhood and how they are answering the needs of students and young professionals

Linked here http://clevelandhillel.org/blog/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/Annual-Meeting-2013-Invite.pdf  is more information about our Annual Meeting.  Please reserve your space by contacting Kathleen McCarthy [email protected] 216-231-0040/10

Oberlin

As you probably know there were a string of racist, homophobic, and anti-Semitic incidents at Oberlin during February, culminating, we thought, in swastikas that appeared in the music conservatory Tuesday night or Wednesday February 26-27.

Then early the next Monday morning, March 4, a student reported seeing a person in KKK dress and the College canceled classes that day, for a day of dialogue.  Our Hillel staff was very involved throughout this difficult time in working with students and colleagues at Oberlin.  They informed me that the day of dialogue on Monday was very important for the student body to support one another and Jewish students played an important role.  Articles on line at CNN.com http://www.cnn.com/2013/03/04/us/ohio-oberlin-hate-incidents/index.html?iref=allsearch  and the paper Forward.com

http://blogs.forward.com/forward-thinking/172310/oberlins-teachable-moment/ give more information about what occurred on Monday and mentions the work of our Hillel staff and students.  Our staff and students also organized a gathering of Jewish students when classes resumed and a special Oneg this past Friday night after Shabbat dinner to give students the opportunity to talk and support one another.

I want to thank our staff at Oberlin for the important work that they are doing.  Their work, along with the work all of our program and administrative staff, makes a difference daily and should always be recognized, but it is often only during unique circumstances that it is done.

Spring semester at Oberlin is in full swing.  Among the programs during the last month are:

  • Weekly Hillel student meetings including a talk by Professor Roger Selya spoke about “Who are American Jews and Do they have a Future?
  • Regular movies including the screening of “Crime After Crime”
  • Weekly Friday night services followed by Shabbat dinner for over 200 students, followed by an Oneg at a student or staff person house
  • Challah A Capella group continues auditions and rehearsals
  • Poet and translator Rachel Tzvia Back was a guest of Hillel along with Judaic Studies, English, and Creative Writing
  • The annual “Ring mini-Course”  on “Jewish Values, the Environment, and Social Responsibility” was taught by Professor Jeremy Benstein
  • Jewish students gathered to discuss and voice reactions to the hate speech on campus and the events of the last month

More information about other Oberlin programs including Shabbat is available at http://obiejews.com/

Purim

The Holiday of Purim was celebrated by hundreds of students (almost one thousand) through multiple programs on many campuses and in the community.  These included

  • Making Hamentashen at the Cleveland Hillel building and Oberlin
  • Distributing  Mishloach Manot at CWRU, CSU, and Oberlin
  • Shabbat dinners at Oberlin, the Cleveland Hillel building, and a graduate student’s apartment
  • “Purimgras” event at John Carroll
  • Parshat Zachor reading at Oberlin
  • Hundreds celebrate at JCLE Masquerade and Oberlin Purim party
  • Megilla reading with sushi and chocolate at Oberlin
  • Cleveland Metro intergenerational carnival with Megilla reading at a local senior citizen facility
  • Jewish Law Student Association (JLSA) Purim Party

Israel on campus

We continue to organize and sponsor educational and cultural programs about Israel.  Included in this are:

  • Students registered for a May birthright trip
  • Idan Raichel appeared in Cleveland.  Students who went to see the show had the opportunity for a meet and greet after they show
  • In preparation for the concert students and community members learned the lyrics to his songs at Cleveland Hillel
  • Special Seudat Shlishit and Havdala at the building prior to the Idan Raichel concert
  • Our Israel Fellow educates students about Israel and helps them develop advocacy skills
  • Israel movie night every Thursday at the Hillel building

More information about other Israel programs and travel possibilities are at http://clevelandhillel.org/undergradisraelbright.htm

Cleveland Metro

Hillel @ CWRU, Hillel @ CSU, Hillel @JCU

The dynamic programming is continuing.  There is a significant increase not only in the numbers of programs, but also in the program quality, the level of participation, and the student leadership.  Besides the programs listed above regarding Purim and Israel, these are some of the highlights of the last month:

  • Weekly lunch and learn and “schmoozeday Tuesday” at CSU
  • Soups on Monday, café schmooze Tuesday, and Israel movie Thursday at Cleveland Hillel building
  • Shabbat programming including weekly services followed by dinner at Hillel, monthly Shabbat lunch in the community, and themed Shabbat dinners
  • Students attend Cleveland Cavaliars game as part of Jewish Community Night at the Q
  • Students form Hillel Relay for Life team at CWRU
  • Leadership students meet regularly
  • African American cultural night, with a kosher flavor at the building
  • Going away party for Hillary Hirsch so students could thank her and wish her success in her new job

More information about other Cleveland Metro programs is available on our website www.clevelandhillel.org Photos from programs are located (Facebook link)

JCLE/Graduate Students

The types of programs being offered by JCLE/Graduate student division continues to grow.  Recently this included:

  • JLSA Faculty student luncheon at the law school
  • This month’s civic engagement initiative was at the Cleveland Food Bank
  • Shabbat dinners every other Friday night at graduate student apartments
  • JLSA and JMSA leadership meet regularly
  • JLSA Purim party in the law school
  • JCLE “Masquerade” brought together over 200 “twenty-somethings” for an evening of partying and enjoyment
  • JLSA at CSU Torah study

A new short video explaining the importance of JCLE from the perspective of participants can be viewed at http://clevelandhillel.org/videos.htm  It is the first video on the page.

More information about other JCLE Programming is available www.jclecity.org

Summer Internship Program

The application deadline was last month, and earlier this month applicants had access to the website of job descriptions to pick the jobs that interest them.  This is the start of the matching process between interns and jobs as we move closer to the June 2 start of the program.  This coming summer is shaping up to be another great experience with a number of changes being made to continually improve the program.

We are planning to celebrate the five year anniversary of the Summer Internship Program this spring.  The program has 187 alumni and of the 89 who graduated university as of May 2012, 24 are living in Cleveland.  The Program has successfully connected university students to Cleveland and its Jewish community.

We want to thank our funders, especially the Jewish Federation of Cleveland (Let My People Know Cleveland) for the support and the help to significantly increase the number of interns and placements.

Interns and their supervisors were addressed at their thank you lunch in August 2012 on the future growth of industry and tourism in the Cleveland area.  They also heard from student speakers including Laura Henkin who was placed at Sherwin Williams.  Her talk was adapted for an article that was recently published in the CJN.  It can be read here http://www.clevelandjewishnews.com/features/community/article_a04ca420-2f63-11e2-9842-001a4bcf887a.html

Links/Miscellaneous/Announcements/Upcoming

CLEVELAND HILLEL MISSION STATEMENT

Engage and empower Jewish young adults through exceptional programming and experiences that foster active Jewish life on and off campus and in the Cleveland Jewish community

CLEVELAND HILLEL VISION STATEMENT

Every Jewish young adult aspires to lifelong Jewish identity and commitment to Jewish life and community

Fundraising Request, Thank you, and Donor Recognition

Please consider partnering with us by making a donation on line at (Network for Good) or by mailing a check to:

Cleveland Hillel Foundation
11291 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland OH 441

If you are interested in learning about special funding opportunities please look at our web site or contact Harriet Mann at [email protected]

We thank the Jewish Federation of Cleveland for their annual allocation.  In addition to the help from our donors, funders, and stakeholders, this level of support enables us to staff and continue to grow our programming.

With the help of all of you we are able to continue bringing quality programs to the undergraduate, graduate, and professional students at the universities we serve and “twenty something” young professionals as we assure a brighter Jewish future

A list of donors from July 1, 2011 – June 30, 2012 is posted on our website at http://clevelandhillel.org/pdf/donor.pdf

Thank Gd there have been hundreds of donors during the first half of this fiscal year and we wanted to find a way to thank you here, but we decided the best professional way of doing this is through the Annual Report which is ready in October of every year and includes the donors of the previous fiscal year (July 1, – June 30).

Linked here is a short video thank you from our students for all the support we receive from our donors And now, a few words from our friends at the Cleveland Hillel Foundation

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