Founded in 1749, Washington and Lee University is named for two of the most influential men in American history: George Washington, whose generous endowment of $20,000 in 1796 helped the fledgling school (then known as Liberty Hall Academy) survive, and Robert E. Lee, whose presidency and innovative leadership brought the University into the national limelight.
The University is located in the historic city of Lexington, Virginia (population 7,000), a warm, welcoming and historic college town located in the Great Valley of Virginia between the Blue Ridge and the Allegheny Mountains. W&L's 35 principal buildings include the picturesque Washington College group forming the Colonnade facing Lee Chapel, where Robert E. Lee is buried. The Colonnade and Lee Chapel are National Historic Landmarks.
The ninth oldest institution of higher education in America, Washington and Lee is composed of two undergraduate divisions, the College and the Williams School of Commerce, Economics, and Politics; and a graduate School of Law. Offering 37 undergraduate majors and 22 minors, including a number of interdisciplinary programs, the University prides itself on the depth and breadth of our curriculum, in which traditional liberal arts courses are augmented by offerings from the only fully-accredited business school and fully-accredited journalism program among the nation's top-tier liberal arts colleges.
Jewish Life at Washington and Lee University
Jewish students at Washington and Lee Univerity are served by W&L Hillel.
Several Jewish Studies courses are offered through W&L's Religion Department including: Beginning Biblical Hebrew I, Beginning Biblical Hebrew II, The Book of Job, Perspectives on Death and Dying, God and the Holocaust and Judaism.
Students can earn credit for study abroad programs in Israel and W&L Hillel organizes a Birthright Israel trip every year. Washington and Lee also offers a trip for students to the AIPAC Policy Conference every spring.
The Hillel House at Washington and Lee houses the E. Cafe, a certified kosher-dairy cafe that serves breakfast and lunch Sunday-Friday. The E. Cafe is famous for their New York bagels, smoothies, coffee, sandwiches, salads and soups. When the weather is nice, the rocking chairs on the front porch and the tables on the beautiful back patio are popular spots to enjoy a meal or snack with friends. The Cafe is open to the public and accepts W&L students' meal plans.