International Hillel Group takes Ultimate 'Business Trip' to Israel
It was a recruiter's dream: 64 top young business minds from around the world gathered for ten days. But these MBA students and young professionals weren't interviewing for jobs — they were painting, packing and gardening their way across Israel as part of Hillel's first Business Alternative Break in Israel
Building on the themes of social entrepreneurship and corporate social responsibility, the participants from nine countries explored the intersection between business and tzedek (social justice) by dividing their time between hands-on service and meetings with Israeli businesspeople. (read more)
Hillels Around the World Respond to Gaza Crisis
As this winter's situation in Gaza escalated, Hillels around the world found themselves increasing their own activities in support of Israel, peace and stability in the Middle East.(read more)
Hillel Israel has a New Home:
the Edgar M. Bronfman Hillel Israel Center!
On November 16, 2008, a dedication ceremony was held in honor of Edgar M. Bronfman, chairman of Hillel's International Board of Governors, for his unremitting dedication and passion to Hillel Israel.
Atop Mt. Scopus at the Hebrew University campus, the event kicked off with an opening reception and invitation-only ceremony. (read more)Hillel Launches Study Abroad Initiative,
Combines Jewish Roots and Global Inspiration
Students studying abroad in Buenos Aires and London can now bring Hillel along for the trip! Starting this semester, Hillel has launched the Global Campus Initiative
, which connects visiting study abroad students to their local Jewish peers and programming.
The Global Campus Initiative (GCI) is a pilot program launching in Buenos Aires and London. GCI leverages the pre-existing Hillel infrastructure in these two cities and supplements this with a network of GCI Interns, study abroad students focused on student engagement. (read more)
•Hillel Latin America received the Joseph Meyerhoff Award for Meaningful Jewish Experience at the 2008 Hillel International Professional Staff Conference. The award honored the region's alternative spring break initiative.AUSTRALIA
•The Australasian Union of Jewish Students (AUJS) held their annual 40-day Leadership Development Program this past December. Twelve participants traveled to Washington, D.C., New York City, Germany and Israel.
• "Cook4Peace", an inaugural interfaith event, attracted 40 Jewish and Muslim university students. Students cooked a three-course kosher and halal meal and then discussed similarities and differences in their religious beliefs. (read more)
• Four Hillel students won the chance to witness the Presidential Inauguration first-hand in Washington, DC. (read more)
•Over 90 American students participated in service-learning trips to New Orleans to help rehabilitate neighborhoods ravaged by Hurricane Katrina. (read more)
•Hillel International President Wayne L. Firestone joined Vancouver Hillel in celebrating Hillel's 60th year in British Columbia.
FORMER SOVIET UNION
•250 students participated in a post Taglit-Birthright Israel seminar in Moscow to discuss Israel and its relationship to the Diaspora.
• Vladimir Dantes, a Taglit-Birthright Israel alum and active member of Hillel Kharkov, won the Ukrainian version of the American Idol television series this winter. (photos)
•Over 300 students representing Hillels around the world participated in the 2008 United Jewish Communities General Assembly in Israel. (read more)
•The Hillel Shabbat Project is building a young community in Tel Aviv around Kabbalat Shabbat programs that successfully combine Jewish tradition and Israeli culture.
•Sapir College Hillel was awarded the Joseph Meyerhoff Award for Meaningful Jewish Experience at the 2008 Hillel International Professional Staff Conference for excellence in building relationships with students and the community through ecological awareness and community volunteerism.
•Nearly 100 British university students lobbied their members of Parliament and other key government figures to raise awareness of issues affecting Jewish students and to combat anti-Semitism.
•Student-led community service activities were held all across the U.K. during Social Action Sunday on November 16, 2008. (read more)
Cairo Cab Ride Turns to Cross-Cultural Adventure
Sam Adelsberg, a junior at the University of Pennsylvania, offers a glimpse into his experience studying abroad in Egypt in the fall of 2008.
I was excited to hear that we had no school on October 6, 2008. I had a lot of work to do and not a lot of time to do it. Then it sunk in: our day off was in celebration of the (dubious?) Egyptian defeat of the Israeli Army on October 6, 1973. There I was, trying to embed myself in Egyptian society — learning its language, meeting its people, studying its culture — and yet, within my parents' lifetime, this exact society had been the sworn enemy of a country I hold so dear.
In this moment, I tried to think about why I came to Egypt to study abroad, and what I was trying to accomplish while I was there. I soon realized that it was precisely because of that intense historical animosity that I decided to study in Egypt. I wanted to better understand our shared history and delve into the related questions of coexistence that keep me up at night.
Being an openly religious Jew in Egypt was not always easy. However, as it turned out, this core part of my identity was instrumental in exploring Egypt's wonders. As one incredible encounter with a Cairo taxi driver would demonstrate, my Jewish identity enabled me to know an Egypt beyond the stereotypes created on television and movie screens.
YOUR GLOBAL IQ?More than 1,000 people attended the former Soviet Union's largest informal Jewish learning Limmud conference in Yalta, Ukraine this past fall, co-founded by Hillel International Board Member Sandy Cahn and chaired by HillelCASE Regional Director Osik Akselrud. (read more) (photo credit: MIGnews.com.au)
Q: According to Hillel's 2008 Student Survey, what percentage of North American students surveyed have studied abroad?
d) 48%See Answer - Bottom of Page
Gabriel Trajtenberg, Regional Director, Hillel Latin America
Hillel Latin America Regional Director Gaby Trajtenberg has a fierce entrepreneurial streak.
Trained as a sociologist, Gaby spent his early career putting these academic theories into practice as JDC Latin America's director of new projects, launching a number of successful community-building initiatives. So when Argentina's Jewish community searched for someone to invigorate their programs for university students and young professionals, it was only natural that they turned to Gaby to get things started.
True to his entrepreneurial spirit, soon after his appointment as director of Hillel Argentina, Gaby presided overthe launch of HillelArgentina in 2002 and oversaw its subsequent expansion. Building on this success, Gaby was named regional director of Hillel Latin America in 2007.
Consistent with his own pioneering nature, Gaby sees the same dedication to innovation and creativity in the work of his staff and students. He believesthat many ofmost successful Jewish engagement strategies include tzedek (social justice), professional clubs — such as the Jewish Business Club — and regional student conferences and he sees his staff’s commitment to innovation as essential.
At the 2008 Hillel International Professional Staff Conference, the Hillels of Latin America's dedication to innovation paid off, as the team proudly accepted a Joseph Meyerhoff Meaningful Jewish Experience Award for their highly successful Alternative Breaks in Latin America initiative.
Hillel's International Division
Hillel in Vancouver
Hillel of Greater Toronto
Hillel of Montreal
Hillel in Argentina
Hillel in Israel
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Hillel in the United Kingdom
Hillel in Australia
Hillel in CASE