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Israel In Crisis Campus Plan

Cornell Hillel is unwavering in its commitment to supporting students during these difficult times, as we have always done. The recent conflicts in Israel have created challenges for students, but we remain committed as ever to providing holistic support in various ways.  Our multifaceted approach encompasses education, pastoral care, student wellness, community building, tracking and addressing hate, safety planning, and strong communication with the administration. Our multifaceted approach encompasses education, pastoral care, community building, tracking and addressing hate, safety planning, and strong communication with the administration. 


We stand with our students, offering a safe and welcoming space for dialogue, understanding, and healing. Together, we will stand strong and continue to thrive as a diverse and united community at Cornell.

1. Education:


Understanding the Crisis in Israel:

We recognize that many students may have questions or concerns about the Israel-Hamas conflict. Cornell Hillel is committed to providing educational resources and opportunities for open dialogue, encouraging an informed and empathetic discussion among our students. This includes organizing ongoing lecture series, including expert David Mokovsky, antisemitism learning courses, Israel learning fellowships and discussions featuring experts in the field to provide balanced perspectives and foster understanding.


2. Pastoral Support:


Mental Health and Wellbeing:

We understand that the conflict can have a profound impact on students' mental health and wellbeing. With multiple Rabbis on staff, Cornell Hillel offers pastoral support, connecting students with trained professionals who can provide a safe space to express their thoughts and feelings. Our offices are open for students to find community, connect and express themselves. We are here to listen, support, and offer guidance to help students navigate these challenging times.


3. Bringing Students to Connect and Grieve:


Community Building:

In times of crisis, building a sense of community and solidarity is crucial. Cornell Hillel hosts events and gatherings, to bring students together to connect, grieve, and find strength in unity. We have hosted multiple community gatherings with over 750 people to create  sense of connection and belonging. These events are open to all students, regardless of their background, with the goal of fostering empathy and understanding. There are also social pop-ups throughout the week for students to relax, meet one another and find a sense of belonging.


4. Student Empowerment:


Training Student Leaders:

We believe in empowering our students to be change-makers on campus. Cornell Hillel is actively working with student leaders to encourage advocacy, dialogue, and informed discussions on the situation in Israel. We provide resources, mentorship, and platforms for students to voice their opinions, host events, and engage with the broader campus community.


5. Tracking Instances of Hate:


Zero Tolerance for Hate:

We have a zero-tolerance policy for hate speech or actions of any kind. Cornell Hillel is committed to tracking and documenting all instances of hate on or off campus. We work closely with the university and local authorities to ensure that appropriate actions are taken to maintain a safe and inclusive campus environment.


6. Safety Plan with Cornell Police:


Ensuring Safety:

Cornell Hillel collaborates with Cornell University Police to establish a comprehensive safety plan for students, especially during times of increased tension. This includes increased security measures, ensuring safe spaces for gatherings, and quick response protocols in case of emergencies.


7. Communicating with the Administration:


Advocacy and Engagement:

We maintain open lines of communication with the university administration, advocating for the needs and concerns of our students. We work to ensure that the administration is aware of our students' challenges and the steps necessary to create a supportive and inclusive campus.

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