Tufts Hillel received two campuswide awards for its role as an indispensable partner to the university.
Hillel received the Campus Community Award for Shabbat 500 "given in recognition of the organization that has made an outstanding and meaningful contribution to the Tufts community." Beginning with candle-lighting on the academic quad led by Adele Bacow, wife of University President Lawrence Bacow, Shabbat 500 engaged the entire campus in celebrating the day of rest in a wide range of thoughtful, joyous and creative ways. Culminating with an evening filled with singing, dancing and learning, more than 500 students, faculty, staff and alumni participated in a dozens of smaller dinners, services and activities throughout the day.
Hillel's important collaborations with the Muslim Students Organization (MSO) was also recognized for "breaking down barriers and fostering communication between diverse student populations." The Synergy Award was presented to Hillel in recognition of a program that brought together over sixty students to connect with one another in an informal setting over a shared meal. Students explored the differences and similarities between Yom Kippur and Ramadan, two of the most important religious observances for Jews and Muslims respectively. Their conversations were compelling and personal, ranging in topic from one man's experiences growing up in Afghanistan to the differences in the Muslim and Jewish calendars and the intricacies of current political elections. The event was scheduled to be an hour, but most people stayed well beyond two, underlining the remarkably genuine interest each student had in getting to know one another.