Hofstra University students salute Israel at New York parade.
By Linda Schwaber
More than 500 students and college alumni represented Hillel at this year's Salute to Israel Parade, held on Sunday, June 4 in New York. An annual tradition that began in 1964, the parade is the largest pro-Israel gathering in the world. The largest Hillel contingent yet was on hand to join in the celebration for Israel’s 58th anniversary.
Marching up New York’s Fifth Avenue under the unified banner of Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life, students hailed from some 20 schools, including the University at Albany, Barnard College, Baruch College, Binghamton University, Brandeis University, Brooklyn College, City College of New York, Columbia University, Cooper Union College, Cornell University, the George Washington University, Hofstra University, University of Maryland, University of Michigan, New York University, Pace University, University of Pennsylvania, Rutgers University, Stony Brook University and University of Connecticut. Many of the students involved have participated in Hillel's Taglit-birthright israel program or are involved in other ways with Hillel on their campuses.
Participating students said they appreciated the opportunity to not only show their solidarity with the state of Israel, but also to unite with other Jews from all walks of life.
“The parade was awesome. There was a great turnout and great representation from all religious movements of Judaism. Hillel really showed the full spectrum of college Jews,” said Craig Messer, a rising sophomore at the University at Albany.
Linda Schwaber is a rising senior at Cornell University.