Student Blog

New Posts By:
Lauren Pace `12
Michelle Greenberg `12
Professor Lewis Glinert
Rachel Gray `15
David Silver `12
Julie Shabto `14

Thoughts on Jewish Life at Dartmouth

Lauren Pace `12

Judaism has always been a big part of my life. In fact, it’s probably a big part of what got me to Dartmouth. In High School I was a Jewish Extracurricular All-Star; president of my Temple Youth Group, Regional Board Member for the North American Federation of Temple Youth… the list goes on. So by the time I got to college, I have to admit that I was pretty burnt out on the whole Jewish youth community concept. I figured I had gotten what I could out of it in high school, and now that mom and dad weren’t around, why bother with anything more than the perfunctory High Holidays services?


Like most freshmen, I clearly had no idea what I was doing.


Fast-forward to sophomore year. My best friend dragged me to the Chabad house for Shabbat dinner, promising Kosher wine and a solid “Jewish facetime” scene. Of course, after my first Shabbat with Rabbi Grey, his wife Chani, and their four adorable kids, I was hooked. I started getting involved with Jewish life on campus and realized that I had actually missed being part of this type of community… a Jewish community. These were people who got me, who shared my value system and who had grown up with a similar background to mine. I came to find that being Jewish on campus is about so much more than your religious beliefs or your feelings about G-d or the Torah, it’s about connecting to like-minded people and allowing them to enhance and enrich your campus experience, both secular and religious.


Since sophomore year, I have been on Hillel’s Project Preservation trip twice – once as a participant and once as a student leader, I have completed the Sinai Scholars curriculum, and I have attended countless weekly Shabbat dinners at Chabad. But those are just the tangible ways that Jewish life at Dartmouth has made an impact. Perhaps even more importantly, it has allowed me to reconnect with my own roots and learn a lot about myself, while simultaneously connecting me with a community of incredible peers, mentors and friends. Looking back on my four years here, I can say that Jewish life has truly been one of the most integral parts of my Dartmouth experience.


Reflections by a graduating `12


By Michelle Greenberg `12

Chabad has become my home away from home at Dartmouth. Whether attending Passover Seder, participating in Sinai Scholars, or merely meeting Rabs for coffee and conversation on a weekday afternoon, I have realized that Chabad has a continuous and important presence in my Dartmouth experience. My favorite Chabad event is the weekly Shabbat dinners. It is a time for me to get together with some of my best friends and other more peripheral friends that I have met throughout the years on Friday nights, relationships that I have grown to cherish more than I could have ever imagined. The weekly Shabbat dinners are an event that my friends and I truly look forward to and enjoy, even more than a tails event with our favorite fraternity. There is something incredibly special about walking into the Chabad house, being around and feeling the love from familiar faces of both my peers and the Gray family, that makes my homesickness for the Greenberg household in distant New York dissipate. I love delving into Jewish tradition and listening to Rabs‚ opinions and sermons. I love helping Chani prepare the food. I love drinking wine and relaxing with good friends, and of course chowing down on Challah, barley, and everything in between. It is amazing what Chabad does, and my takeaways are tremendous. Celebrating Shabbat at home is a rare occasion as I am reformed Jew who mostly celebrates the more sporadic holidays, but I know celebrating Shabbat is something I will bring home to New York and definitely make a regular thing in my own family in the future. What can I say? My Jewish friends and I look forward to Friday nights for a reason that is way off the beaten path from the average Dartmouth student.

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