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December 13, 2012 - Image 55

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2012-12-13

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

jew is h@edu

for college students by college students

Strategic Planning

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MSU Hillel puts into practice plans for Israel advocacy.

East Lansing

S

trategic planning can be tricky
when it comes to Israel advocacy
because we never know when a cri-
sis will arise, placing us in response mode.
Having a good strategy that looks long
term at the campus environment should
set up students for success when a crisis
arises.
Recently I
visited Michigan
State University
to meet with
Felix Shoihat,
the Israel Fellow,
and members of
the Team Israel
Programming
Committee
(TIP-C) to assess
the strategic plan
that we designed at the beginning of the
semester. The initial work students and
staff have done for their strategic plan
has enabled TIP-C and Hillel to build new
relationships on campus and help them
impact campus discourse on Israel.
The plan focuses on three priorities:
building the group internally, working with
the Jewish Studies Department (JSD) and
reaching out to campus leaders. Initial
successes are in:
• Alex Waldman, president of the
Jewish Student Union, set a goal to
reach out to members of the student
government and Black Student Alliance.
Because of his hard work, the student
body president and the programming
board president are traveling with him

to Israel on the David Project's Israel
Uncovered: Campus Leaders Mission in
January. Additionally, Felix, Alex and the
rest of TIP-C have identified the next gen-
eration of pro-Israel leaders on campus
and are finding ways to train them to take
on responsibility within TIP-C and JSU.
• Felix has started reaching out to the
Jewish Studies Department. He assists
faculty teaching Hebrew classes, and he
created a system with the department to
identify future opportunities to partner on
events. Additionally, he is working with
faculty members to hire a student to work
part-time for the JSD.
• Other Israel student leaders are
building partnerships with campus lead-
ers, such as College Democrats, College
Republicans, ROTC and the African Student
Union. This relationship-building process
will come full circle in the next few weeks
as members of TIP-C organize a series of
programs with each of the groups.
These efforts already have seen initial
results. The recent Israel Fest, co-spon-
sored by the Jewish Studies Department
and Michigan State Student Programming
Board, was attended by more than 500
students, including faculty and student
government representatives.
While we don't know what will hap-
pen next in Israel, the steps students have
taken at Michigan State are allowing them
to use new relationships to explain what
is happening to their peers while build-
ing out the number of students engaged
in dialogue on Israel. @

Jason Horowitz is Midwest campus coor-

dinator for the David Project.

lop

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December 13 • 2012

55

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