Thousands of Jewish college students across North America led their campuses in celebrating Israel's Independence Day with food, music and comedy - as well as more serious fare - as Hillel concluded its Israel 101 campaign, a 101-day, 101-campus initiative to highlight Israel's accomplishments. The campaign concluded when Hillel presented Israeli Ambassador Daniel Ayalon with one of the 101,000 pro-Israel postcards that have blanketed campuses during the campaign.
"It was extremely gratifying to see Israel presented in such a positive light on American campuses," said Wayne Firestone, director of Hillel's Center for Israel Affairs. "Hillel activists are making a difference for Israel."
Hundreds of programs were conducted across the continent. They included:
Hillel's Center for Israel Affairs is promoting a positive image of Israel on campuses worldwide by providing students with the strategies, methods and resources to plan pro-active social, cultural and political programs that meet their needs and interests. The largest Jewish campus organization in the world, Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life, is committed to creatively empowering and engaging Jewish students through its network of over 500 regional centers, campus foundations, program centers and affiliates. Its long-standing dedication to building Jewish identity, while nurturing intellectual and spiritual growth in a pluralistic community, positions Hillel as a leader in building a stronger Jewish people and stronger Jewish future.
- San Francisco State University, where anti-Israel activities stunned the campus last year, Hillel students handed out strawberries in honor of Israel's agricultural achievements and pursuit of peace.
- The University of California, San Diego Hillel activists provided educational materials around the theme Got Israel?
- The University of Oklahoma Hillel hosted an Israel bloc party of more than 600 students that was addressed by the governor.
- University of Pennsylvania Hillel brought former Prime Minister Shimon Peres to campus.
- Stanford University Hillel played host to Dennis Prager and ZOA President Morton Klein.
- Arizona State Hillel sponsored an event called "Laughing toward Peace."
- Ohio State University Hillel brought the King David Drummer's Circle to campus.
- Yale University Hillel published the new Yale Israel Journal.
- Central Florida Hillel held an Israel Advocacy Teach-In.