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What is Hillel's Mission? 

Hillel seeks to enrich the lives of Jewish undergraduate and graduate students so that they may enrich the Jewish people and the world.

Hillel is committed to

  • Creating a pluralistic, welcoming, and inclusive environment

  • Fostering student growth and the balance in being distinctively Jewish and universally human

  • Advancing social justice, Jewish learning, and spirituality

  • Embracing Israel and global Jewish peoplehood

  • Delivering excellence, innovation, accountability, and results

How is Hillel funded? 

Hillel is not a membership based organization. More than 80% of our annual budget comes from parents, grandparents, friends and alumni. We’re very grateful for the support of Jewish Federations throughout Michigan, especially the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit for their ongoing investment in Jewish life on campus.

How many Jewish students are on campus?

We estimate that there are over 3,500 Jewish students, a number that has been significantly increasing over the past decade. In fact, more Michigan Jewish students are attending MSU than any other school nationwide.

How active is jewish life on campus?

Very! Our programming is student led and driven. Hillel’s Jewish Student Union, with over 35 student leaders, helps to guide programming at Hillel. Events includes social, cultural, educational and religious activities. We sponsor a number of student groups and committees including: Team Israel Program Committee, Athletics, Jews in Greek Life, Jewish Business Association, Freshman Programming, GAP: Graduate and Professional Group, Tzedek/Social Action Group and more.

What happens on holidays and shabbat?

Hillel sponsors religious services each Shabbat and special meals and programs for Jewish holidays, especially the High Holy Days. During Passover, Hillel provides Seders. All holiday meals and services are free to MSU students.  

Shabbat dinners are often the highlight of the week. Free dinners follow student led services – and include homemade matzo ball soup and challah. Shabbat dinners are an opportunity to see old friends and meet new friends—it’s a great experience for students. Thanks to the generosity of members of the community, Shabbat dinners are offered free of charge to students. If you are interested in sponsoring or co-sponsoring a Shabbat dinner (or Sunday brunch), please call 517-332-1916.

is there a lot of anti-semitism on campus?

No. We don't know of many incidents in the past decade. Any incidents that have surfaced have been dealt with swiftly and effectively by the university. The university does a great job offering diversity education and is constantly working to educate not only the students, but the faculty, professors and administration so that everyone will be sensitive to the diverse cultures on campus. Hillel is providing an exceptional source of education for the campus community with regards to Judaism and its customs.

Is Hillel a university office?

No. While Hillel enjoys a very close working relationship with MSU offices, colleges and departments we are not a university office. In fact, we were recognized with the “Indispensable Campus Partner Award” from International Hillel for our various initiatives with Michigan State University.

Frequently asked questions

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