Dr. Steven M. Cohen to address Hillel Summit - May 21-23

Monday, May 1, 2006

Jewish, Academic Communities to Meet at Landmark Event 

Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion Professor Steven M. Cohen will be among many of the world's most respected university presidents and Jewish communal leaders who will present at "Inspiring Values, Creating Leaders," the first international summit of academia and Jewish communal leadership. The Hillel-sponsored event, to be held May 21-23 at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, D.C., will explore the relationship between the Jewish community and academia and how they can work together to advance common goals. 

The summit is open to all university administrators, faculty and donors who are interested in strengthening relationships with the Jewish community and Jewish campus life. Registration is open through May 12. 

Confirmed presenters include: Pres. Lawrence Bacow, Tufts University; Assistant Vice Chancellor for Students Karen Levin Coburn, Washington University; Pres. Robert Corrigan, San Francisco State University; Pres. Scott Cowen, Tulane University; President John J. DeGioia, Georgetown University; Prof. Alan Dershowitz, Harvard Law School; Pres.-Elect Wayne Firestone, Hillel; Stephen K. Friedman, mtvU; two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist Tom Friedman of The New York Times; Chairman Malcolm Hoenlein, Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations; Gwen Ifill, PBS; Pres. Avraham Infeld, Hillel; Pres. Richard M. Joel, Yeshiva University; Pres. Shirley Kenny, Stony Brook University; Prof. Deborah Lipstadt, Emory University; Pres. Ruth Messinger, American Jewish World Service; Vice Pres. for Student Affairs Larry Moneta, Duke University; Prof. Pamela S. Nadell, American University; Pres. Morton Owen Schapiro, Williams College; and Chancellor Mark Yudof, University of Texas System. 

Participants will discuss how to strengthen Jewish life on every campus; building strategic, cooperative relationships between the Jewish community and campus leaders; and creating meaningful leadership opportunities for students, among other topics. 

Conference highlights include:

  • Why Be Distinctively Jewish and Universally Human? How can educators and the Jewish community work together to help students become citizens of the world, while embracing a uniquely Jewish identity?
  • Spirituality, Religion and the University How does religion fit into the university's quest to inspire values and enrich the soul?
  • Balancing Individual Rights and Communal Responsibilities How to balance free speech and civility at a time when passions run high about the Middle East.
  • Contemporary Campus Challenges How do university presidents attract and educate today's multi-tasking, highly pressured, parentally-dependent college students?
  • Promoting a Culture of Service and Activism How can the Jewish community create an atmosphere that promotes student involvement in social justice on campus?
  • Addressing Anti-Israel Activity on Campus When does legitimate discourse become Israel-bashing?
  • Proselytizing on Campus Can campuses be missionary-free zones.
  • Jewish Philanthropy on Campus How can philanthropists best support institutions of higher education? Through Hillel? Jewish studies programs? Israel studies programs? The campus at large? Does Jewish giving have to be a zero-sum game?

Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life is the world's largest Jewish campus organization with affiliates on more than 500 campuses across the globe. Hillel's mission is to enrich the lives of Jewish undergraduate and graduate students so that they may enrich the Jewish community and the world. 


Founded in 1875, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion is North America's leading institution of higher Jewish education and the academic, spiritual, and professional leadership development center of Reform Judaism. HUC-JIR educates men and women for service to North American and world Jewry as rabbis, cantors, educators, and nonprofit management professionals, and offers graduate programs to scholars and clergy of all faiths. With centers of learning in Cincinnati, Jerusalem, Los Angeles, and New York, HUC-JIR's scholarly resources comprise the renowned Klau Library, The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives, research institutes and centers, and academic publications. In partnership with the Union for Reform Judaism and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, HUC-JIR sustains the Reform Movement's congregations and professional and lay leaders. HUC-JIR's campuses invite the community to cultural and educational programs illuminating Jewish heritage and fostering interfaith and multiethnic understanding. www.huc.edu