Masorti on Campus Shabbaton, February 2014
By Alex Hamilton, Class of 2017
I had an amazing experience attending the Masorti on Campus Shabbaton in February. This was an incredibly inspiring event, where I had a great time while simultaneously learning about how to run a Conservative community. I was involved in USY regional leadership in high school. Now I’m a leader not just five times a year at USY conventions, but rather all year long at Rutgers Hillel. It helped me move wonderfully into my role as Koach Co-Chairman-elect for next year’s Hillel Student Board.
I will encourage everyone in the Koach/Conservative Community Leadership next year to go on this program. When I was there, not only did I reconnect with old friends, but I also was able to talk to people from many other campuses and find new strategies to build a community on my campus.
There were over 30 campuses recognized at the Masorti on Campus Shabbaton, including two students from Rutgers. This was supposed to replace the former annual Koach Kallah. Koach was a national program funded by the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, but it lost its funding last year. The organizers of this conference did a good job replacing the Koach Kallah.
The creators of this event plan on rotating it through various campuses in the future, and hopefully next year there will be one shabbaton on each coast. It is my hope that Rutgers can host one once the new Hillel building is built. We have so much potential to grow, and I think if more, dedicated people were to go to this next year and the year after, it would be a home run for the Rutgers Conservative Community.
Rutgers Hillel has a thriving Conservative community, with weekly Friday night and monthly Saturday morning services, regular learning programs, social events, and robust student leadership. Our rabbinical student intern from the Jewish Theological Seminary of America and our Conservative rabbi at Hillel, Rabbi Esther Reed, provide resources for the Conservative community at Rutgers. If traditional egalitarian Judaism is the value you stand for, please support the Conservative community at Rutgers Hillel so it can continue to thrive on campus.