How many Jewish students are there at Hamilton?
Approximately 180-200 of the 1850 students are Jewish, most coming from a Reformed Judaism tradition, but we also have Conservative, Reconstructionist and quite a few who self-identify as culturally but not religiously Jewish. Around 30 students usually attend Shabbat Services and Dinner on Friday nights, and many more people for holiday celebrations and social events.
Is there a kosher food on campus?
Every Friday we share a kosher Shabbat dinner cooked by students. All dining options also have a vegetarian/vegan menu. During the Passover holiday, we have a large community kosher Seder for two nights. Kosher for Passover meals are available during the entire week of Passover.
What is Shabbat like at Hamilton?
Every Friday, we hold Shabbat at the Azel Backus house or in Dwight Lounge for special occasions. We have student-led services every Friday night at 5:30 p.m., followed by dinner at 6 p.m. Hillel members usually cook Shabbat dinner, but on special occasions we order out from local restaurants, including a Middle Eastern Restaurant. All Shabbat food is kosher.
What about the High Holidays?
We hold services on campus throughout both of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur led by a visiting Student Rabbi from The Jewish Theological Seminary in New York or Azriel Grysman, a professor at Hamilton.
What kind of events does Hillel have?
Hillel holds a variety of cultural events throughout the month. These events include bringing in speakers, tie-dye, movie nights, challah baking, Purim parties, Humantachen baking, Sukkah decorating, Bar/Bat Mitzvah parties, Chanukah parties with latke cooking, Israeli Independence party and many others.
What opportunities does Hamilton offer for Jewish studies?
Hebrew is one of the languages required to minor in Middle Eastern studies. You can find more about our Hebrew courses. Hamilton also offers many courses on Judaism as part of its Religious Studies curriculum including:
- Ancient Jewish Wisdom
- Modern Jewish Thought
- Rabbis, Mystics and Philosophers
- Rise and Fall of David
- Politics of the Bible