Muhlenberg College Hillel

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Frequently Asked Questions

WHAT IS THE JEWISH COMMUNITY LIKE AT MUHLENBERG? HOW LARGE IS THE JEWISH POPULATION?
Over 750 students, more than 33% of the 2250 member student body, at Muhlenberg College are Jewish. Over two-thirds of the Jewish students on campus are active in Hillel, making it the largest student organization of any kind on campus. The Jewish community on campus is a visible and active presence here and is comprised of students, faculty and staff from all major branches of Judaism - Conservative, Orthodox, Reconstructionist and Reform. Hillel continues to be recognized by the college administration as a model for quality student-focused programming and chaplaincy.

WHAT KINDS OF ACTIVITIES DOES HILLEL SPONSOR?
Hillel offers a wide variety of activities - social, religious, community service, cultural, Israel-focused and educational - on a regular basis. Shabbat Dinner is held weekly. There are two student-led Friday night services. A typical month might also include a speaker on Israel, bowling, a service at a senior citizen home, Lunch and Learn Torah Study, a holiday party and a trip to the Holocaust Museum. Activities are planned by and for students.

IS THERE A HILLEL HOUSE ON CAMPUS?
Yes! The Hillel House is located at 2238 Chew Street in the heart of campus. The house is directly across the street from Keneseth Israel synagogue. The house has a kosher kitchen(not under supervision), a spacious dining room, a chapel, a lounge, a free laundry room, study areas, and student and staff offices. Students are encouraged to visit the house regularly to study, socialize or relax. Students have after hours access to the house through their college electronic identification card.

CAN A STUDENT KEEP KOSHER ON CAMPUS?
Yes! Two kosher kitchens under the supervision of Star-K are a part of the College’s Wood Dining Commons. Noshery North offers vegetarian and vegan options. Noshery South has meat options. The Noshery has recently expanded service by offering brunch and dinner on Saturday.  Hillel maintains a kosher kitchen (not under supervision) but does not offer a kosher meal plan separate from the College. Hillel’s Shabbat Dinner meals are prepared in cooperation with the Noshery.

WHAT ABOUT THE JEWISH HOLIDAYS?
Muhlenberg College is closed for Yom Kippur. It is the official and active policy of the college that all Jewish students are excused from all classes and labs on any holiday when Jews are prohibited from work. Students must simply identify themselves to their instructors if they wish to be excused. A Rosh Hashanah dinner and Passover Seder are held each year on campus and all students are welcome to attend any synagogue in Allentown for all holiday services.