Rabbi Drew speaking at CSUF yesterday
Yesterday, SoCalJSS‘s Rabbi Drew Kaplan spoke at California State University, Fullerton (CSUF) on the practices and history of the holiday of Hanukah. Collaborating with the Hillel Foundation of Orange County, who supplied yummy Krispy Kreme doughnuts and other snacks, the event was a great midday diversion for the students.
“It was nice getting a historical perspective of a very popular holiday. And not just the older stories, but also where the origin of modern practices,” said CSUF student, JoAnna Hubbard. “I didn’t know that the dreidel game’s letters were Yiddish acronyms. I also didn’t know that there was a conversation about how to light candles for Hanukah.”
“It was nice to have a rabbi come and educate us about Hanukah,” said CSUF student Arthur Detalia. “It was nice learning about Hanukah, both culturally and how we perform candle-lighting, as well as the histories behind them.”
“Rabbi Drew led an amazing program with our Hillel students!” exclaimed Bradley Erbesfield, assistant director of Orange County Hillel. “His conversation with students was very engaging and interesting. We had an amazing time learning about Hanukkah, while also having fun at the same time.”
Yesterday, Rabbi Drew led a discussion at California State University, Long Beach, on the topic of dreams. Collaborating with Long Beach Hillel, the event was a “Torah on Tap” discussion, wherein Beach Hillel covered the first round of drinks, while Rabbi Drew dropped some knowledge.
Towards the end of the previous discussion with Beach Hillel, some of the students were curious to discuss dreams, thus it became the topic for last night’s discussion. Rabbi Drew shared texts both from next week’s Torah portion, involving Joseph and dreams, as well as rabbinic texts from the Talmud as a basis for the discussion.
Yesterday, Rabbi Drew led a discussion on graveyards on-campus at California State University, Long Beach with Beach Hillel. The discussion topic was very timely, due to the October “spooky” season. As a “Torah on Tap” discussion, attendees were treated to a drink on Beach Hillel, while Rabbi Drew discussed various sayings and stories about graveyards from the Talmud
Last night, SoCalJSS‘s Rabbi Drew Kaplan led a discussion with Hillel students on relationships in Oceanside. Collaborating with Northern County San Diego Hillel, the discussion was part of their “Hot Topics” series. Held at a Starbuck’s, the Hillel covered students’ beverages, while Rabbi Drew discussed the creation of Man as well as various rabbinic wisdom from the Talmud.
For this semester, Rabbi Drew Kaplan of Southern California Jewish Student Services (SoCalJSS) will be available on a weekly basis for office hours at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB). Through a partnership with Long Beach Hillel, Rabbi Drew will be available for students to drop-in on
Tuesdays Wednesdays (as of September 12th) this fall semester, 1:30-3:30 at the CSULB University Interfaith Center (Brotman Hall, room 178). An opportunity for students to ask questions or to talk with Rabbi Drew, SoCalJSS and Beach Hillel are happy to be able to offer rabbinic services to students.
Three new pages are up today on the website, detailing activities with which SoCalJSS has been involved:
Greek Life provides a look into activities with which Rabbi Drew has been involved with local Greek fraternities.
High School Activities shows Rabbi Drew’s activities with high schoolers
Working with Local Hillels has separate pages for Inland Empire Hillel, Long Beach Hillel (under construction), Orange County (also under construction), and San Diego, North County Hillel.
On Sunday, February 10th, Southern California Jewish Student Services (SoCalJSS) held its third bimonthly texts and tippling event. “Rituals & Rums” was an enjoyable experience for an adult crowd, where participants got to enjoy exploring a variety of rums as well as exploring with Rabbi Drew why Judaism has wine in so many of its rituals. Whether it be lifecycle events or holiday/shabbat activities, the topic under discussion provided some questions and insights as to why and how wine came to be associated with them.
As with previous such events being “Witches & Whiskies” in October and “Torches & Tequilas” in December, in addition to exposing the crowd to the topic and the spirits, the purpose of the series is also to serve as an opportunity for giving of one’s tzedakah money to support the work of SoCalJSS in Jewishly enriching the lives of young adults in Southern California.
The next such event will feature a single-malt Scotch tasting on Sunday, April 21st at 7pm.
The ninth annual Jewlicious Festival will once again be taking place in Long Beach! Mark your calendar for March 8-10, which is when Jewlicious Festival 9.0 (JF9) will be taking place and once again on RMS Queen Mary! For a quick, brief description of the festival, enjoy the following (from the Jewlicious Festival website):
An agenda-free Jewlicious party of music, arts, and culture, for Jews 18+, with compelling speakers, amazing music, and delicious food. It all happens on March 8-10 on the Queen Mary (a seriously cool place if you have not visited before). There are no pre-requisites, and its for Jews of all religious, cultural, and political backgrounds.
The schedule features many kinds of programs spread over the three days. From concerts, amazing meals, and panel discussions on compelling topics, to a musical Havdalah on
the boat deck, a late night DJ session, and much more. We will posting more details of the schedule soon.
We expect 800 people this year alone and 7,000 have participated since 2005.
Tickets have been on sale for a few weeks and the prices are only going up. Tickets are available here and increase for each month.
If you are interested in volunteering, please visit here