We compared the concept of God to life and how we should love life just as we are commanded to love God. We also discussed how we must pass these traditions onto our children and spread them to each new place we enter. Each group member shared her own experiences with mezuzahs, which evolved into a conversation about our unique ways of practicing and celebrating Judaism in our daily lives. We also compared how the Jewish concept of home is similar to the ways that sororities strive to create a home for each of its members, including the idea of reaching out to others and making them feel included and important. Participating in this discussion made me think about the role Judaism plays in my daily life and interactions with others, whether I realize it or not. I enjoyed hearing how other group members expressed their Jewish values and affirming that even if our expressions are varied, they are all still well-founded. At the end, we were given our own mezuzahs to take home and had the opportunity to write our own prayers or thoughts to place inside. I have hung mine on the door to my room and love having this constant reminder of the positive role Judaism plays in my life inside of my home. If you have the chance to attend one of these discussions, definitely do!
-- Amy Singer
Class of 2018
While talking with students, Pinkas covered plenty of the areas he has experience in-- including motivating the populous to accept environmentally motivated initiatives, working within a governmental structure to bring big picture issues to the forefront, and utilizing divesture to achieve environmental goals. The topics were applicable not only to Israel, but also to America and the entire world. The opportunity to hear from the man voted one of Israel's 100 Most Influential People on his work and passion was truly remarkable.
-- Otto Warmbier
Class of 2017
In my role as Arts & Culture Engagement Intern, I chose to organize a program that blended art and Jewish history. I wanted to give all UVA students a chance to hear first-hand about what it was like to live through the Holocaust as a Jew. A lot of people have not had the opportunity to do so, and I believe that it is an important talk for everyone to hear. It is a very unique and rare chance that we are able to talk with a Holocaust survivor, and we should take advantage of this opportunity while we have it. It was so rewarding to see UVA students with all different backgrounds and majors to come out to this inspiring event.
-- Rachel Mayman
Class of 2018
The Brody Jewish Center, Hillel at the University of Virginia, is the focal point in a renaissance of Jewish life for the 1,800 Jewish students on Grounds.