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March 01, 1963 - Image 3

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1963-03-01

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

The Bnai Brith Hillel Founda-
tion marked its 40th anniversary
here Sunday with an academic
convocation at Harvard Univer-
It commemorated the event
by presenting a Hillel Academic
Award to Professor Harry A.
Wolfson, 75 - year - old Harvard
scholar, who held the first aca-
demic chair established in the
United States for Judaic studies.
An audience of 600 gathered
in Paine Music Hall, on the
Harvard campus, to pay tribute
to Wolfson, and to laud the
growth and activities of the
Hillel movement. It included
prominent Jewish educators and
scholars from universities
throughout the country.
Wolfson, who is Emeritus
Nathan Littauer Professor of He-
brew Literature and Philosophy
at Harvard, a chair created for
him in 1925, was cited for "a
half - century of monumental
scholarship in Jewish thought
and letters." Among those who
praised the Lithuanian-born edu-
cator was President Kennedy.
In a message read at the
convocation, Kennedy, who is
a member of the Board of
Overseers at Harvard, spoke
of Wolfson's "extraordinary
personal influence, not only on
your students, but on all those
engaged in reflective learning
and research:"
"You have broadened the
horizons of human thought and
have given an example of per-
sonal devotion and humility for
which we are all grateful," the
President declared. "The award
which you are receiving from
the Hillel FoUndatiori is but a
symbol -of the respect we all
share for your accomplishments,"
the president said;
movement was first
established in 1923 at the Uni-
versitk-'1of - Brith
sponsorship began two years
later, with an annual budget of
lesS than $12,000. Since then,
the program has expanded to 205
colleges and universities in the
United States, and 39 others in
Canada, Great Britain, the Neth-
erlands, Israel, South Africa and
Australia. The .1963 operating
budget, established by Bnai Brith
for the Hillel prograni is almost
$2,200,000. _
Label A. Katz, president of
Bnai Brith, in one of the con-
vocation addresses, attributed
in large measure to the Hillel
prOgram "the dramatic rever-
sal in Jewish attitudes" that
has transpired on the college
campus in the past generation.
The presentation to Wolfson
was made by Dr. Abram L. Sa-
char, president of Brandeis Uni-
versity, and honorary chairman
of the Hillel Foundations. Other
convocation participants were:
Dr. William Haber, who retired
Monday after eight years as
chairman of the Hillel Commis-
sion; Dr. Milton R. Konvitz, of
Cornell University; Dr. Louis
Gottschalk, of the University of
Chicago; Dr. Franklin Ford,
dean of Harvard's faculty of arts
and sciences; and Mrs. Moe
Kudler, president of Bnai Brith
* * *
WALTHAM, Mass., (JTA) —
The Bnai Brith Hillel Founda-
tion broadened the scope of its
campus activities by inaugurat-
ing an intensive national Hillel
program for Jewish faculty mem-
bers. The Hillel Commission,
holding its 40th • anniversary
meeting on the Brandeis Univer-
sity campus here, adopted a pro-
posal, outlin e d by Professor
Louis Gottschalk of the Univer-
sity of Chicago, to provide Jew-
ish faculty members with "a
continuing opportunity to exam-
ine the meaning and relevance
of Jewish teachings, and to dis-
diss issues of Jewish scholarly
and ethical concern."


The program would also be
designed to encourage the fac-
ulty group "to explore, in com-
mon with intellectuals of all
faiths, some of man's ultimate
questions, and help develop an
understanding of our respective
traditions on a level which

Hillel Foundation by the
Charles E. Merrill Trust.
Dr. Milton Konvitz, in the
principal convocation address,
deplored the loss of "many of
our best minds and talents"
among Jewish professors and in-
tellectuals who "have evaded or
escaped from the Jewish commu-
nity and have no ties or Jewish
loyalties." But the existence of
a small minority "who are
deeply involved, deeply com-
mitted and well informed Jewish
intellectuals, is a new phenome-
non of the American campus,"
he said.
The need for greater commu-
nity support for Jewish educa-
tion among college students was
stressed in a report by Rabbi
Benjamin M. Kuhn, Hillel's na-
tional director. While advocating
more funds for every phase of
Jewish education, he noted that
the $65 million spent annually
on the primary and secondary
level averages about $100 per
student, as compared to an aver-
age expenditure of $8 per stu-
dent on the university level.
The problem is further aggra-
vated by heavy increases in Jew-
would reflect the intellectual ish college enrolments each year,
needs and standards of the aca- Rabbi Kahn said. He reported
the * results of a Hillel study
demic community."
which show that there are now
Gottschalk, who was elected more than 275,000 Jewish stu-
successor to Dr. William Haber dents at American and Canadian
of the University of Michigan, colleges, representing about
as chairman of the Hillel seven percent of total enrol-
Commission, headed a Hillel ments.
faculty consultative committee
The study also showed that
that laid the groundwork for
more than 200 North Ameri-
the new program. The com-
can colleges with Jewish en-
mittee, comprised of distin-
rolments of 25 or more stu-
guished educators from a
dents are without religious or
dozen campuses, met here to
cultural facilities for them.
formulate policy recommenda-
The Hillel Commission re-
tions for the new program. elected Joseph Paradise, of Rye,
Haber, a member of the com- N.Y., as vice-chairman; Philip W.
mittee, said that exploratory Lown of Lowell, Mass., treas-
work for the faculty program urer; and Maurice Bisgyer of
is being financed by a $20,000 Washington, as secretary. Haber,
grant made to the Bnai Brith whose retirement as chairman, a

post he held for eight years, was
"The achievement of Brother-
in conformance with Bnai Brith's hood is the crowning objective
policy of limiting the tenure of of our society."—Dwight D.
its highest officials, was elected
an honorary chairman, sharing
that distinction with Dr. Abram
D. Sachar, president of Brandeis.
Gottschalk, the new Hillel
chairman, is 64, has been a mem-
ber of the Hillel Commission
Certified Master Watchmaker
and Jeweler
since 1959, and had served a
five-year span as president of the
18963 Livernois Ave.
Chicago Board of Jewish Educa-
tion. He has been a member of
UN 1-8184
the University of Chicago fac-
ulty since 1927.



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Kennedy Praises Wolfson of Harvard,
Hillel Foundation on 40th Anniversary

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