Welcome to Mississippi State University Hillel,
the first and only official Jewish organization on campus!
Election Day for 2012-2013
Incoming Executive Board:
President: Joey Frost
VP of Internal Affairs: Rachael Frost
VP of Development: Daniel Snyder
Treasurer: Jake Tobey
Secretary: Rebecca Bramlett
Recruitment Chair: Molly Rafaely and Rebecca Silver
Student Association Rep: Heather Stewart
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Mississippi State University Hillel
Email Mississippi State Hillel
Our mission is to guarantee a welcoming and inclusive safe haven for fellowship as well as spiritual and intellectual growth for all students while enriching the lives of our members.
At Mississippi State University Hillel, we strive to create positive Jewish experiences for our students every single day. Whether it is a pot luck Shabbat or celebrating Passover at a community member's home, we want to make our university's community feel as close to home as possible.
We want to be able to provide every opportunity for each student to grow spiritually, emotionally, and socially. Long term we are looking to acquire a building close to campus to be used as a Hillel House. We look to increase membership from 25 to 50 students over the next five years.
We hope to be more successful recruiting the Memphis, Birmingham, Jackson, and New Orleans areas. We hope to be able to raise enough funds to be able to support Hillel House efforts within ten years.
We brought in Amir Gwirtzman, World Renowned Israeli Jazz Musician, of the Presidential Featured Artist Concert Series.
MSU sent a delegation on the Young Judea Taglit-Birthright trip in May 2012.
We have increased student membership from 0 to 25 in three years.
MSU Hillel brings a youthful vibe to the community synagogue for the Holidays. Last year we brought 10 students to Rosh Hashanah and Passover which was one fifth of the congregation that day.
MSU Hillel informs the public about Israel, Judaism, and Hillel through outreach such as the International fiesta each spring sponsored by the Holmes Cultural Diversity Center.
If you have any questions about how you can make a contribution or how your contribution will be used, do not hesitate to contact our development chair, Daniel Snyder at 601-672-5369 or email us at MsuJewishLife@gmail.com
In 2009, Daniel Snyder and Rachael Frost began a plan to form what would become the first Jewish organization
on the campus of Mississippi State University.
There had never been a formal organized faction for Jewish fellowship and spiritual growth.
This was concern for both Rachael and Daniel.
Rachael and Daniel met in 2009 as members of The Famous Maroon Band of Mississippi State University.
It was almost comical.
A mutual friend of the two had told Rachael that Daniel was Jewish.
Apparently this situation had happened before. At first, she didn't even believe that Daniel was Jewish.
She said, "No, you're kidding right." Dainel said, "What can I do to prove it?" He started rattling off Jewish holidays, customs, and traditions.
When she finally believed him, they almost instantly had the mutual idea make a difference at MSU and in the Jewish world.
Soon after they met, they began work on brainstorming the initial ideas and plans for what would eventually become the first Hillel at MSU.
It didn't happen overnight though. When they began looking into how to make a Hillel, they realized it would be a daunting task, but they didn't give up.
Their will to succeed would ultimately prevail.
The first step was to "round up" the Jews on campus. They had no idea even how many Jews there were on campus.
Daniel knew a few from back home (Jackson), and a few from Henry S. Jacobs Camp or Nfty.
Rachael was also able to bring in a few that she knew from the Vet School and other various sources.
The next step was to become an official organization sanctioned by the Student Association and MSU. This was a primary requirement of Hillel.
Hillel wouldn't just allow any club to be affiliated; you had to have been official with the University. So they set about tackling this task.
To become an official organization, they had to have a constitution, 10 initial members, and a Faculty advisor.
Well, Daniel was able to come across a failed attempt to form a Jewish Student Association constitution during the initial phase.
They used this as template to model their Constitution after. They fortunately were able to round up 10 members including Faculty which ironically is a minion.
From there, they began to seek out a Faculty Advisor. With the help and suggestion by the Cohens, Nelle and John, they chose Dr. Kara Rosenblatt as their first Advisor.
John Cohen is the baseball coach at MSU, and his wife Nelle have been so generous and hospitable to our young organization.
Dr. Rosenblatt is professor of Special Education and holds a PhD. Next, they began to wade through bureaucracy by submitting all of the paperwork and waiting for the results.
This process actually took about one year for the Division of Student of Affairs to decide whether or not we should be an organization.
Then in the fall of 2010, they granted us the status of an official organization. Our initial name was Jewish Life on Campus.
Our next step was to begin applying to the Hillel office for official Hillel status. This step actually was fairly simple.
We filled out a few online forms, and shortly thereafter, we were official.
Daniel Snyder is an Industrial Engineering Major from Crystal Springs, MS.
Rachael Frost is a Pre Veterinary major from Huntsville, Alabama.