Five better uses for Hillel’s $18 million in funding
1. Give $18 million to Carl Levitt.
It is a truth universally acknowledged that life after college is hard. With $18 million, I, Carl Levitt, could pay off my creditors and perhaps even live comfortably for the rest of my days. After four grueling years studying at this institution, $18 million would be the least that a wholly private organization could do for me. This solution would surely be the most equitable to attendees of this university of all ethnicities and creeds as it benefits a significant and deserving minority of students.
2. Build a wall down College Avenue.
A wall built down the center of College Avenue could be built to protest all protests regarding the Arab-Israeli conflict. The wall would show the world that Hillel, and by extension Rutgers, believes in the power of common sense and discussion rather than angry protest and straw man arguments. This symbolic wall will be especially important to the world as a whole, because the fates have decided that a contest spanning generations, occurring in a far and distant land will be determined by opinions culled from the student body of Rutgers University.
The actual wall itself does not need to be drab and concrete as these types of walls often are. The wall could instead emulate the spirit of the graffiti wall down by the Raritan River and be constructed in a drab concrete color only to immediately be layered in spray paint. Any leftover funds can be used to drape tarps off the wall as a makeshift lean-to for New Brunswick’s “residence-challenged.”
3. Buy a van with a sweet sound system.
While at first this seems like an odd request, the truth is that the Rutgers Hillel fails to represent all varieties of Judaism. Hillel currently has no support or programs for the followers of Rabbi Nachman of Breslov, chief among them the sect referred to as “Na Nachs.” The van in question would be parked in front of the Chabad House every day — except of course the Sabbath —blasting techno remixes, as is their tradition. Any left over funds can be used toward buying enough drums to outfit a proper drum circle as well as quantities of weed that the unfaithful might term prodigious.
4. Build a castle.
Castles are generally regarded as awesome, and the Rutgers Hillel would do well to one of its own. The $18 million would surely be enough to build a magnificent structure here. This estimate includes disability pay for all of the workers after their hands are cut off at the castle’s completion. (We wouldn’t want other organizations to get uppity and claim that their castle was built by the same workers who previously built the Scarlet Bastion.) In an effort to promote inter-organization cooperation, the castle could easily be maintained by the Scarlet Cross, which I imagine, could operate a proper medieval court if only given a hall grand enough.
The Jewish Federation could move their headquarters to the new castle, freeing up space for more exercise rooms in local Jewish Community Centers across the state. Hillel can convert the surrounding land to tenant farms for student work-study in order to provide an authentic peasant experience for students. Rutgers Hillel could lead a new trend in student religious and cultural groups. Why should student groups need to petition for funds and space from the University when feudal self-sufficiency is only a single castle away?
5. Endow a Professorship.
It is not uncommon for a private individual or group to fund University chairs. Hillel could completely ignore students’ needs for a place to socialize and eat and instead endow an English chair dedicated to satire and its history. The entire $18 million would be necessary, because the professor in question would maintain a strict diet composed entirely of Irish babies. I am not in anyway insinuating that I deserve such a position — or indeed that I enjoy the taste of tender baby flesh — but I have already submitted my credentials. At the very least the University will have my resume on file just in case.
Carl Levitt is a School of Arts and Sciences senior majoring in English and history.