Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life has received a $10.7 million grant, payable over five years, from The Jim Joseph Foundation to expand the Experiential Educator Exemplar (E³) Program and to support the Campus Entrepreneurs Initiative. This is the largest single grant in Hillel's history.
"This generation of students, the Millennials, learn through their hands, their hearts and their minds," says Hillel President Wayne L. Firestone. "By providing them with immersive experiences in which they are exposed to Jewish history and tradition, such as Taglit-Birthright Israel and social justice alternative breaks, they are beginning Jewish journeys that will continue back on campus with E³ educators and CEI students."
"We are pleased to partner with Hillel in doubling the number of Jewish students who are involved in Jewish life and who have meaningful Jewish experiences," explains Al Levitt, President of the Jim Joseph Foundation.
The grant allows Hillel to continue its Campus Entrepreneurs Initiative and to expand its Experiential Educator Exemplar (E³) program to ten campuses. The E³ Program places highly-trained Jewish educators on campuses to offer in-depth Jewish educational content to students. The E³ Program has met with considerable success during its two-year pilot at Hillel's Yitzhak Rabin Center for Jewish Life at UCLA. The Jim Joseph Foundation grant will expand the E³ program to ten new campuses. The first E³ educators will be posted to campuses for the fall 2008-2009 school year.
The new E³ professionals will work in tandem with Campus Entrepreneurs, college students who engage peers to involve them in Jewish life. The Campus Entrepreneurs Initiative, now in its second year, employs 114 students on 12 campuses. They will engage 7,020 students this year. Hillel projects that the Jim Joseph Foundation grant will enable it to engage an additional 30,000 students in the next five years. The grant also enables Hillel to provide significant follow through with students who participate in the Taglit-Birthright Israel program.
"Our strategic planning process told us that today's students want to learn experientially and in a direct relationship with a teacher," explains Hillel Board of Directors Chairman Julian Sandler, who led the two-year Strategic Planning effort. "Furthermore, students want to be engaged by their peers. CEI and E³ are direct results of this research."
"We are grateful to the Jim Joseph Foundation for this significant grant," says Hillel President Firestone. "This commitment will enable us to expand our efforts to engage students."
The Jim Joseph Foundation, established in 2006, is committed to a sustained program of grant-making in pursuit of a vision that leads to ever-increasing numbers of young Jews engaged in ongoing Jewish learning and choosing to live vibrant Jewish lives. The Foundation uses all of its resources to foster compelling, effective Jewish learning for young Jews in the United States.
Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life is the world’s largest Jewish campus organization with affiliates on over 500 campuses across the globe. Hillel’s mission is to enrich the lives of Jewish undergraduate and graduate students so that they may enrich the Jewish community and the world.
Hillel Gets $10.7 Million For Campuses (New York Jewish Week, 3/26/08)