UConn Hillel spices up the fall with its upcoming events 

The UConn Hillel, the center for Jewish life on campus, is sponsoring numerous activities for UConn students this fall. On Friday, September 15, UConn Hillel will have apples with honey at the Student Union in celebration of Rosh Hashanah. Illustration by Krista Mitchell/The Daily Campus

With autumn right around the corner, many student organizations are conducting events to get students in the seasonal spirit and to offer a break from the classroom. The University of Connecticut Hillel, the center for Jewish life on campus, is sponsoring numerous activities for UConn students of all different walks this fall. 

September usually coincides with a selection of Jewish holidays, including Rosh Hashanah, the start of the Hebrew year. Traditionally, apples dipped in honey are eaten at Rosh Hashanah to represent a good year to come. In celebration, those visiting the Student Union on Friday Sept. 15 can enjoy apples with honey and learn more about the history and traditions of the holiday. Since Rosh Hashanah spans longer than one day, special services will also be held at the Hillel House on North Eagleville Road from Sept. 15 – Sept. 17. 

Later this semester, various enrichment activities will be hosted such as a Jewish Life on Campus expo, a bagel brunch and yoga sessions. Also featured are special events for Sukkot, a seven-day harvest celebration, and an opportunity for students to bake challah bread with university President Radenka Maric, both happening in October. Challah bread is often enjoyed by the Jewish community around special occasions such as Yom Kippur. Yom Kippur is one of the most solemn of Jewish holidays, wherein people abstain from eating and drinking for the day and participate in traditional prayer and meditation, as well as ask and accept forgiveness from one another. A variety of recreational activities are in the works, including the Hillel Hummus Experience, an annual favorite. UConn students make a team of 3-4 students and compete in a TV-style cooking competition to see who can invent the best flavored hummus. Happening this November, all supplies will be provided and no cooking experience is necessary. 

As the winter approaches, events centered around the Hanukkah tradition are planned, as well as other fun activities including tote bag painting nights, group hikes, special guest speakers and more. UConn Hillel will also be offering a variety of experiential opportunities, such as an excursion to Israel early next year. All student leaders are welcome to join, although spots are limited. UConn students will explore the country and learn about topics such as Palestinian and Israeli society, history, culture and human rights. 

Other popular events UConn Hillel has hosted in the past include HillelWell Fair, giveaways, hands-on self-care stations, presentations and other special celebrations. Although focused around the Jewish faith and tradition, all UConn students are invited to participate and learn. UConn Hillel is also a member group of the Jewish Federation of Greater Hartford and the United Jewish Federation of New Haven. The group strives to empower students by energizing and deepening the commitment of Jewish students already participating in the religion and programs activities at all five of UConn’s satellite campuses. 

UConn Hillel is sure to add a bit of fun to your fall schedule this year. For a complete listing of events and further information, visit the UConn Hillel webpage at uconnhillel.org

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