• See PDX Hillel in Guatemala!

    In March of 2015, Hillel leaders at Lewis & Clark College led an alternative spring break trip to San Juan Comalapa, Guatemala! The trip focused on service, issues of sustainability, and interfaith discussion. A wide group of students of all majors, backgrounds, and grades came together to serve, learn, and grow.

    The group worked with Long Way Home, a non-profit that uses sustainable design and materials to construct self-sufficient schools and empower local communities. The organization began in 2004 with a grassroots community development strategy to bring local residents together. Their first project was a community park. In 2009, LWH began construction on an environmentally friendly elementary, middle, and vocational school complex. This year the school has 91 students enrolled!

    LWH’s school complex has 18 buildings planned, with 14 already completed or in their final stages of construction. Lewis & Clark students helped with the construction of some of these ​final buildings. While in Guatemala, the group worked on the​construction of these final buildings. We built railings, cobbed ​mud to the walls, filled water bottles with trash, and pounded ​tires to construct foundations. As part of the sustainable focus ​of the organization, many of the buildings are constructed ​using bottle bricks (water bottles packed with trash) and old ​tires. So far LWH has used over 12,000 tires in construction. ​Waste is a very pressing issue in Guatemala and LWH is working hard to find creative solutions to the problem.

    Over the week of working in San Juan Comalapa, the group learned the value of hard labor, and how to build fences, mix mud, and pour concrete. We spoke to a variety of community members and LWH volunteers in order to gain a broad understanding of the organization’s position within the community. We spoke to the founders, local workers, and a Gaby, who’s conducting an ethnography of LWH.

    In total, the week we spent in San Juan Comalapa was an amazing experience of learning, growth, and connections.

    See more images from the trip. Photo Credit: Rachel Perry and Kara Scherer

  • University Presidents Show Their Support

    Lewis & Clark College President Barry Glassner (left) and Portland State University President Wim Wiewel (right) have both made statements showing their support for Greater Portland Hillel. We are so grateful to both President Glassner and President Wiewel for showing their support in this way, and by making PDX Hillel a priority every day. 

    “Greater Portland Hillel provides leadership and resources that help our students work together to strengthen our Jewish and interfaith communities, as well as our connections with and beyond Portland. At Lewis & Clark, learning is always collaborative, and Greater Portland Hillel is a true partner.” -- Barry Glassner, President of Lewis & Clark College

    "I am grateful for the presence of Greater Portland Hillel on PSU’s campus.  Portland Hillel ensures our students have a vibrant Jewish campus life and a safe and happy community to celebrate their heritage.  Portland Hillel is much more than a student group; they provide leadership opportunities, spiritual guidance, community service opportunities, and more.  PDX Hillel serves an important role in helping the university community to be inclusive and accessible by providing a place for students to share of themselves and to learn about Jewish traditions and values. Hillel also plays a valuable role in our academic conversations and is committed to ideals of tolerance and multiculturalism that go to the heart of what makes this community valuable." --  Portland State University President Wim Wiewel

    Thank you so much President Glassner and President Wiewel.

  • We want to know more about YOU!

    Portland Hillel is all about its students, and we want to know more about you! Help us out by filling out our Student Survey and Student Information Form, so that we can learn about what's important to you, what programs you would like to spend time on and how we can best serve you. We look forward to hearing from you! 

  • Introducing our Israeli Fellow!

    Born and raised in a traditional Jewish family in Shoham, Israel, Shiran brings a unique and refreshing perspective to Portland Hillel. She attended IDC Herzlyia, a private college in Israel majoring in Finance and did a semester abroad in Nova Scotia. She has a diverse background that includes time in the military, travel to North America, and work​ experience ranging from fitness to marketing to volunteering for non-profits focused on children's heart disease. Her warm compassion and wide smile have helped to brighten Portland campuses this fall. When she's not engaging Jewish students, or laughing with her co-workers, Shiran likes to play soccer and cook the food of her upbringing. 

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