-- The Phantom Tollbooth, by Norton Juster
Welcome back to Illini Hillel! As I thought about what words to use to open the first weekly email of the 2015-16 school year, my mind drifted back to my favorite middle school book. College is an incredible journey, and I cannot wait to share in it with all of you.
For those of you just starting your journey, welcome! Here at Hillel you can find countless resources to help you on your way. Make yourself at home in our amazing building, enjoy our delicious food, and join some of our student groups. Or, feel free to start your own. For those of you coming back home, take the opportunity to try something new. As Alec Bings tells our hero Milo, life is not about rushing from one place to the next, but rather stopping to see the wonder and beauty on your way.
On a personal level, I am very excited to start my own Illini Hillel journey. I cannot help but feel, as Milo did, that everything I have done in my life has led me here. My Jewish summer camp, youth group, and Fraternity experience demonstrated the importance of forming a strong Jewish community and doing all that you can to better it. My last two years living and teaching English overseas allowed me to meet people from a variety of backgrounds and cultures, confront new and unfamiliar situations, and work with a range of student interests and learning abilities. I am ecstatic that the next stage in my personal journey has led me to Champaign-Urbana, and am ready to meet all of you! As the new program associate, don't hesitate to let me know what you want out of Hillel. After all, you are the one going from one place to another- what do you want to see in between?
See you soon!