Put Your Best Foot Forward

by | Jan 12, 2017 | Entertainment, Hillel Ontario, On One Foot | 0 comments

Our On One Foot campaign launched January 9 and we are hopping around with excitement! Piloted in 2016 with Guelph and Queen’s, On One Foot has now expanded to six schools- Hillel UofT, Hillel Ryerson, Guelph Hillel, Queen’s Hillel, Western Hillel, and Hillel McMaster. Each Hillel has a different goal and will use the money they raise for the unique need they have identified on their campus.

But let’s take a step back. Where does the name On One Foot even come from?

A famous Talmudic tale tells the story of a person who wanted to convert to Judaism under the condition that a Rabbi will teach him the whole Torah while standing on one foot.

First, she approached one of our sages, Shammai. He was a man who followed very strict interpretations of the Torah and, as the story goes, felt insulted by this “rude” request and refused to answer any questions, sending her away. She, however, didn’t give up and decided to ask another sage, Hillel. Hillel was known for his open interpretations of the Torah, and decided to view her request as a challenge. Hillel stood on one foot and said:

“That which is hateful unto you do not do to your neighbour. This is the whole of the Torah. The rest is commentary. Go forth and study.”

Hillel embraced the student with open arms, demonstrating a welcoming, diverse and inclusive Judaism. At Hillel Ontario, we view the sage Hillel as our role model and aim to create a diverse and inclusive atmosphere at each of our campus communities.

We strongly believe in Rabbi Hillel’s Golden Rule, and follow his great example of doing unto others as we would have them do unto us.

Hillel Ontario Welcomes University of Toronto’s Anti-Semitism Working Group

Hillel Ontario Welcomes University of Toronto’s Anti-Semitism Working Group

Hillel Ontario welcomes University of Toronto’s recent launch of a new Anti-Semitism Working Group. The Working Group will review programming, activities, processes, and practices in place at the University of Toronto’s three campuses and develop recommendations to support the University’s response to antisemitism.

“The establishment of a working group focused on antisemitism is a much-needed measure for the University of Toronto,” said Rob Nagus, Senior Director, Hillel UofT. “Too often, Jewish students who have faced antisemitism on campus have felt that their serious concerns around anti-Jewish hate were dismissed. Given the positive impact of recent anti-racism initiatives on the campus community, it is incumbent on our institutions to also address the unique challenges inherent to combating antisemitism.”

“Across the nine campuses we serve, Hillel Ontario is committed to working with all university administrations to champion the voices of Jewish students,” said Marc Newburgh, CEO, Hillel Ontario. “We look forward to supporting the work of the University of Toronto by ensuring these voices are heard and acknowledged. Doing so will help the Working Group better understand how contemporary antisemitism manifests on campus.”

Hillel International Honours Hillel Ontario

Hillel International Honours Hillel Ontario

Hillel International recently honoured outstanding Hillels and Hillel professionals for creating innovative Jewish experiences and meaningful connections throughout the pandemic.

Among those recognized was Hillel Ontario, and its Chief Campus and Education Officer, Rabbi Seth Goren.

As a whole, Hillel Ontario – the largest regional Hillel in the world – was honoured with The Eleanor Meyerhoff Katz Innovation Award. This recognition is awarded to a Hillel for its creation of innovative processes that refresh, reinvent or revolutionize the relationships, communities and experiences helping students engage in Jewish self-authorship, or for helping staff improve the impact of their work by encouraging reasonable and calculated risk-taking, exploration, and curiosity.

In addition, Rabbi Seth Goren was honoured with The Richard M. Joel Exemplars of Excellence Award for his passion and outstanding devotion to the Jewish campus community, for enriching the lives of Hillel students and for ensuring that the organization reflects a culture of excellence.

I am privileged to work with such a talented, caring, and resilient group of campus professionals, led by Rabbi Seth Goren” said Hillel Ontario CEO, Marc Newburgh. “While confronted with so many significant challenges, this team has done an incredible job inspiring, supporting and empowering our students, creating meaningful and reimagined opportunities for connection that amplify Jewish campus life.”

About Hillel International
Founded in 1923, Hillel has been enriching the lives of Jewish students for more than 90 years. Today, Hillel International is a global organization that welcomes students of all backgrounds and fosters an enduring commitment to Jewish life, learning and Israel. Hillel is dedicated to enriching the lives of Jewish students so that they may enrich the Jewish people and the world. As the largest Jewish student organization in the world, Hillel builds connections with emerging adults at more than 550 colleges and universities, and inspires them to direct their own path. During their formative college years, students are challenged to explore, experience, and create vibrant Jewish lives.