Hillel Council of New England Supporting & Connecting Jewish Life Across Campuses


Fall 2016 Newsletter


Enjoy the Hillel Council of New England fall 2016 newsletter that was emailed to our subscribers HERE.  You can also find it on our Facebook page.

HCNE Welcomes New Advisors and Promotion of Assistant Director


Hillel Council of New England (HCNE) is excited to welcome Hillel Advisors Jacob Freedman and Hayley Goldstein to the team. Jacob is the new HCNE Regional Programs Coordinator and Hillel Advisor to Emerson and Wheaton Colleges, as well as Suffolk University. Hayley Goldstein is the new Rabbinic Intern and Hillel Director at Boston College.

As the new Regional Programs Coordinator, Jacob will oversee regional student programming and Israel engagement. He comes to us from Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology where he was the Communications Coordinator in Admissions. He received a Master’s degree in Higher Education Administration from the University at Buffalo. Jacob has a lifelong interest in media and films. Hayley Goldstein is entering her third year at the Rabbinical School of Hebrew College and has been a Jewish educator for the last five years. As our new Rabbinic Intern, she will provide guidance and spiritual leadership across the region as well as serve on Boston College’s campus. Originally from Minnesota, Hayley is a passionate Jewish educator whose other interests include making music videos, being a puppeteer, pottery, cooking, and her fat, glorious cat, Yossi.

Additionally, over the summer HCNE welcomed Shoshana Munk as the new IACT Coordinator (Israel Engagement) at Williams and Amherst Colleges.

HCNE is also pleased to announce the promotion of Miriam Blue to Assistant Director. In addition to her new responsibilities, she will continue as Hillel Director at Simmons College. Sam Mendales, HCNE Executive Director, said, “Miriam has been with the agency for over five of years and adds expertise in community-building and development, and has a true passion for cultivating the next generation of Jewish leaders.” A recent graduate of Hebrew College’s Graduate School of Education, Miriam lives in Lynnfield with her husband and daughter and is an avid reader.  More on the staff... 



Patti Sheinman Retires from HCNE


It is with deep appreciation that Hillel Council of New England (HCNE) announces the retirement of Patti Sheinman, Associate Director. Patti has been with HCNE for over 25 years and in that time has served as Hillel Director at the following campuses; Emerson, Wellesley, Wheaton, Olin and Babson Colleges. She has mentored many Jewish professionals and has enhanced the Jewish college experience for hundreds of students. We will miss her energy and wish her well. Photos are with Gary Shillin, HCNE Board President, and Sam Mendales, Executive Director.


Patti Sheinman RetirementGary Shillin and Sam Mendales
Hillel Council of New England hosts
Regional Presidents Council Meeting


Hillel Council of New England (HCNE) hosted the Regional President’s Council Spring Meeting on April 3rd at Simmons College. This program has been revived after 10 years and now extends beyond Boston to include campuses in Greater Massachusetts as well as Rhode Island. The meeting objective was to bring Hillel student presidents together to connect, learn from each other and brainstorm ideas. 

Student presidents realized that regardless of campus size and resources, they are all facing similar challenges such as board member burnout, increasing event attendance, and combatting anti-Israel sentiment on campus. The presidents also discussed at length the challenge of the perception of Hillel as a solely religious organization, while most Jewish students on campus identify as “cultural Jews”. It was also important for attendees that their Hillels continue to maintain a commitment to pluralism and serve as many Jewish students on campus as possible. 

The presidents also shared their most successful events of the semester.  For example, Curry College shared a successful “bubble wrap stress reliever Shabbat” program that yielded record attendance. Attendees also shared tips on how to strengthen their communities and increase participation, in a continuing effort to build community on campus.

The meeting ended with student leaders putting new ideas into action by creating a campus “buddy system” and mapped out next semester to build upon the program.  “I am so excited and happy to collaborate with the other presidents,” remarked Katie Sack, student President at Emerson College Hillel. “It’s helpful for me to be proactive in dealing with issues if I know others have faced similar problems.”  HCNE plans to expand the Presidents’ Council to more New England campuses, along with hosting the 2nd annual Student Leadership Conference in the fall of 2016.

Hillel Council created this program as part of its mandate to foster and create opportunities for Jewish students and Hillel professionals to connect with each other and the larger Jewish community across campus lines. HCNE also provides direct staff and programming to six small campuses, and provides support for emerging campuses and professional development to Hillel professionals throughout New England. 


Leadership Team, Presidents Council 

Leadership Team: 

Katie Sack, Emerson College Hillel Student President

Jake Sussman:  Roger Williams Hillel Student President

Lizi Fine: Simmons College Hillel Student President



2016 Regional Presidents Council Meeting Attendees:

Representing Campuses from Curry College, Wellesley College, Simmons College, Emerson College, Roger Williams University, Brandeis University and Boston University. 

Hillel Council of New England hosts the Largest
Regional Student Leadership Conference


Boston, MA- Hillel Council of New England (HCNE) hosted the Regional Student Leadership Conference on November 8th at Simmons College. It was the largest gathering of campuses in recent history, comprising of 70 students representing 16 colleges and universities from across Massachusetts and Rhode Island. The goal of the conference was to bring Jewish student leaders together to connect and learn from each other as well as from experts in the field.

As a regional office, HCNE was able to facilitate an event of this magnitude. HCNE provides staff and programming to six small campuses, support for emerging campuses and professional development to Hillel professionals throughout New England. HCNE advised and supported a student-initiated planning committee, representing student leaders from five very different campuses, including Boston College, Emerson College, Clark University, Boston University, and Brandeis University. The students worked together since the summer to plan the entire conference. Jeremy Burton, the Executive Director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Boston, was the keynote speaker and facilitated a session entitled, “How to talk About Israel on Your Campus.”

This conference grew out of the success of the HCNE’s Regional Student Leadership Dinner, held each semester. Hillel student leaders from various schools really wanted, and needed - more time to talk with each other and hear what was happening on each others’ campuses. Student leaders realized that it didn’t matter whether they came from a Hillel with a large Jewish population or a small one, in an urban area or in a suburb; they were all facing similar challenges and could learn a lot to take back to their own campuses from hearing others’ experiences.

The conference ended with students reflecting on the day and discussing next steps to build upon the program. “We are thrilled to have been able to help bring this to life,” remarked Miriam Blue, Director of Small Campus Advancement at HCNE, who also served as the staff advisor to the student conference planning committee. “Our job as a regional office is to connect campuses so that no one feels like they are operating in a bubble. It’s our hope that the success of the conference will empower the students to continue their community-building across campuses and beyond.”