Jewish Campus Leaders Unite for Israel

Ever since Simchas Torah, Jewish life on campus has a united sense of purpose. In this spirit, Chabad on Campus International spearheaded a monumental convening of Jewish campus leaders in Eretz Yisroel.

The backgrounds of Jewish students on campus are diverse, and the Jewish organizations on campus are just as varied.

Ever since October 7th, what has stood out about Jewish life on campus is not its variation but its united sense of purpose. The outpouring of Jewish pride and courage and the increasing need for physical and spiritual support has unified the most influential Jewish organizations and institutions on campus towards the goal of supporting Jewish students on campus physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

“An attack on our people in Israel was accompanied by a different sort of attack on our students on campuses around the world,” said Rabbi Yossy Gordon, CEO of Chabad on Campus International. “This war is global in its reach. We understand with blistering clarity that this is an attack on the Jewish People and on the Jewish future. The road to victory is paved with Jewish unity, pride and Torah values.”

It was in this spirit that Chabad on Campus International spearheaded a monumental convening of Jewish campus leaders in Israel.

The diverse representation was unprecedented. Directors, CEOs, and Presidents experienced the paradox of tragedy and hope that is the current state of the Jewish people.

Together, they visited the fields of the Nova festival, Hostage Square in Tel Aviv, and the devastated Kibbutzim on the southern border. Together, they showed support with barbecues for soldiers on army and air force bases, visiting wounded IDF heroes at hospitals and rehab centers, and showing love to grieving families. And together, they reinforced the common mission: to do whatever it takes to support Jewish students on campuses during a period of intense antisemitism, particularly on campus.

Organizations represented included: Alums for Campus Fairness, AEPi, AIPAC, Anti-Defamation League (ADL), Chabad on Campus International, ClubZ, Hillel International, Israeli American Council (IAC), Israel on Campus Coalition (ICC), Jewish on Campus, the Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights, and Mosaic United.

Amongst the prominent Jewish campus leaders joining the trip: Adam Lehman, President and CEO of Hillel International; Tim Cohen, Senior Vice President of Leadership Giving at Hillel International; Elan Carr, CEO of the Israeli American Council and former United States Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism; Jay S. Feldman, Executive Director of the AEPi Foundation; Meir Holtz, CEO of Mosaic United; Ilan Wagner, Vice President of Birthright Israel Onward; and Alyza Lewin, President and General Counsel of the Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law.

“It was an honor to host so many leaders involved in Jewish life on campus on this journey,” said Rabbi Avi Weinstein, COO of Chabad on Campus International, who hosted the trip. “Being together with our brothers and sisters in Israel at this time was incredibly powerful. The unity and increased collaboration between the participating campus organizations will surely strengthen Jewish life on campus in exciting new ways.”

Throughout the wave of emotions that washed over the participants of this journey, fear and faintheartedness were not counted among them. They feel, as do the students they serve, an immense responsibility to vigorously defend Jewish life on campus and beyond. And as Jewish students stand tall, they will receive every resource they need to continue to shine the light of our people and our way of life for all to see.

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