A Refreshing Change from the Typical Boardroom

Far away from the boardrooms they usually inhabit, the Chabad on Campus International Advisory Board and Board of Directors recently met for the first meeting of its kind, where members experienced Jewish life on Campus.

The Chabad on Campus International Advisory Board and Board of Directors recently gathered at the Stanley Middleman Center for Jewish Life – Rohr Chabad at Temple University, Pennsylvania, under the leadership of Rabbi Baruch and Chanie Kantor. It was a refreshing change from the usual boardroom setting.

The first meeting of its kind, members experienced Jewish life on Campus, with a focus on the elements that Chabad on Campus so tirelessly and effectively provides Jewish students.

The day began with a welcome from George Rohr, the Chairman of the Advisory Board, followed by a Dvar Torah shared by Advisory board member Dr. Gary Ostrow.

Participants then partook in a JewishU class given by Rabbi Shlomie Chein, VP of Student Engagement at Chabad on Campus International and Shliach at the University of S. Cruz, experiencing firsthand how this revolutionary learning program developed by Chabad on Campus International is succeeding on campuses.

Chabad on Campus International offers Shluchim a sophisticated tech platform with tools, metrics, and automation, to optimize areas of student engagement and fundraising, which is strongly supported by board members Bob Diener and Dave Litman. During the conversation, Diener presented innovative ideas for engaging even more students.

Ron Swartz, an early member of the Advisory Board and Co-Vice Chair who personally traveled on the Chabad on Campus International student “LivingLinks” trip to Poland, recounted his experiences to the other members on hand. The impact of these trips is well documented, but nothing compares to hearing it firsthand.

Advisory Board Members Russ Krivor and Marc Frohlich discussed their personal experiences with giving charity and how it has transformed their lives.

During lunch, nearby Chabad on Campus Shluchim and Shluchos joined the gathering, including Shluchim from Chabad at Drexel University, Chabad at Haverford and Bryn Mawr Colleges, Chabad at Swarthmore College, Chabad at Stockton University, Chabad at Swarthmore College, Chabad at TCNJ, and Chabad at Rowan University.

“In addition to conducting the board business of the day, this convening allowed our members to experience the fantastic work of campus Shluchim couples first-hand. They left deeply inspired by the dedication and impact of the Shluchim,” said Avi Weinstein, COO of Chabad on Campus International.

The esteemed group was then addressed by the president of Temple University, JoAnne A. Epps. She spoke about the important role Chabad plays on campus for Jewish students.

Rabbi Moshe Kotlarsky, Chairman of the Board of Directors, could not make the meeting in person but addressed the group via phone from a regional Kinus HaShluchim in Morocco.

Yaakov Cohen, Co-Vice Chair of the Advisory Board, highlighted the significance of self-reflection as a valuable tool for personal development. His emphasis on this practice underlined the importance of reflecting thoughtfully to identify areas for improvement and growth.

During the meeting, Andy Borans, Board member and CEO of the Alpha Epsilon Pi Foundation, shared exciting news about the recent COCI and AEPi Shabbat event. He announced that more than 150 students participated, making it a tremendous success. 

The group went on a shuttle tour led by Rabbi Kantor and campus tour guide Marley Slotkin, an alumnus of Temple University and friend of Chabad and the Kantors. They explored Jewish life at the university, passing by landmarks such as the old Chabad House and Hillel, as well as other iconic university locations.

With members of the Jewish student body on hand, members of the Advisory Board were also able to hear from different students about their experiences on campus, bringing the data and talk to life.

“Such meetings are a driver for future growth and good things for the Jewish people,” said Rabbi Yossy Gordon, CEO of Chabad of Campus International, who stewards the advisory board. “With our unity and connectedness, we can overcome the challenges of our time. When we get together as we did today, the impact is far greater than just this one day; it can truly change the world.” 

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