Welcome [back] to Western! With the summer pretty much behind us and adjustments to new campus life realities under way, I am taking this opportunity to share some thoughts with you.
Western Hillel’s staff team and your dedicated student leadership are here for you every step of the way during the challenges and uncertainties this academic year may bring. Your student leadership is working hard with our staff team to find creative and innovative ways to build community virtually and (when possible) in person. We are all resyncing and rebuilding after a challenging time that has impacted every one of us.
Our staff structure has changed somewhat from last year. I am returning as Senior Director and Renee Berkowitz is returning as our Springboard Innovation Fellow. We are very excited to announce that we have a new Advocacy Coordinator, Mitchell Gould, joining our team to help support student efforts around antisemitism and anti-Israel issues. Finally, you may have heard that Yos & Leora Tarshish have made a transition to support Queen’s Hillel in Kingston. Although Yos will be solely focused on creating Jewish campus life at Queen’s, I am happy to share that Leora returns as our Senior Jewish Educator for this year. On behalf of the whole staff team at Western Hillel, we are excited to meet every single one of you this year.
Meet the Execs 2020!
Many of you have questions about the Hillel House and how it will operate in the coming semester. We are slowly opening the Hillel house as a study space and expect to make it possible for the broader Hillel community to reserve spots as early as September 21st. There will be limited space and students will need to sign up for spots in advance. Your safety is our top priority and our space, along with any in-person experiences, will meet or exceed guidelines set by health officials and the university.
Keep an eye out for program and event announcements as we enter the High Holidays. It will be an interesting year on campus and we are excited to navigate these new waters together, as a community. Please know that Hillel will be here for you all year, whatever you need, so please, reach out to us anytime, we would love to hear from you.
Wishing you a great semester and may we have a sweet Jewish New Year – Shannah Tovah!
Senior Director, Western Hillel (he/him)