History of Hillel Jewish Student Life at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, CA

MISSION

San Luis Obispo Hillel is the center-point of Jewish life at Cal Poly and San Luis Obispo Community.  We provide a welcoming and supportive environment, so our students can be proud of and engaged with their Judaism.  We raise awareness on campus of the significance of our Jewish heritage, values, and the state of Israel.  Through Shabbat dinners, career-based and community-service programs, social and cultural events, and religious gatherings, SLO Hillel brings Jewish students and the community together to enrich lives. 


HISTORY

SLO Hillel has been a presence on Cal Poly campus for nearly 40-years as a student run club.  The organization’s endurance in this capacity is a testament to Cal Poly’s students’ character.  In 2018 the students gained enough traction to earn a dedicated Hillel director. This landmark event transitioned Hillel into a professional organization, with increased ability to reach out and influence our campus.  Our goal today is not only reach more Jewish students but also be a more impactful and consistent part of their Jewish life on campus. 


WHERE WE ARE TODAY

  • 1,200 Jewish students attend Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo today. 

  • More than 400 of those students are actively engaged in Jewish Student Life through 7 different Jewish student groups on campus.  

  • 120 Cal Poly students and recent graduates went on Birthright in 2018 on 9 different trip providers, in both summer and winter trips.

  • During the first term of 2018-2019, Hillel hosted 32 events. These included Shabbats, Havdalahs, and social, cultural, wellness and educational programs. These events were attended by more than 350 different students.  We will provide 100 events in 2018-2019 academic year!


WHAT WE ARE WORKING TO DO

  • Become more pluralistic and diverse though new programming, attracting students not currently active in Jewish life. 

  • New events include hiking, music and bonfires, on-campus kosher BBQs, off-campus retreats, wellness activities, seminars and speakers and, dinners with other cultural and religious groups.

  • Our goal is for ALL Cal Poly students to have Jewish relationships and at least one positive Israel engagement before they leave Cal Poly.

  • Increase the number of students attending Birthright, including a full bus of Cal Poly students together so they come back to campus not only with both a positive Israel experience, but also with life-long Cal Poly friends.

SLO Hillel - 1 Grand Ave, Box 88 - San Luis Obispo, CA - 93407-0675

 ©2020 by San Luis Obispo Hillel