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Chabad House stands with Hillel against bigotry

(02/03/14 5:00am)

We are Chabad House at Rutgers University, and I am writing in reference to the controversial article written by Colleen Jolly and printed in your opinions section. While this article was not directly aimed at Chabad House, but rather its sister organization, the Rutgers Hillel, we feel the obligation to respond due to its underlying implications of bigotry and anti-Semitism.

Super Bowl more about events, less about the game

(01/31/14 5:00am)

Could there possibly be any more headlines “frozen” into one football game? Let’s start with the temperature. Of course, the National Football League decides to pick basically the coldest winter on record to experiment with a cold-weather Super Bowl — a winter where more people are familiar with the term “polar vortex” than with who is actually playing in the biggest football game of the year.

Academic freedom should be free and unrestricted

(01/28/14 5:00am)

In late 2013, the American Studies Association, a scholarly organization comprised mainly of American Studies professors across the United States, elected to boycott Israeli universities and academic institutions. The organization argued that an academic boycott of Israel would help ease Palestinian suffering and help lead to a peaceful resolution. The American Studies Association counts a number of Rutgers professors as members.

Students can be more proactive in strategic planning

(01/21/14 5:00am)

If there is anything Rutgers University grips onto for campus pride, it’s most likely their dynamic diversity. Only at Rutgers can I walk down most streets and hear at least three different languages combined with six different accents on my way to class. Yet, university officials feel it’s best to improve its reputation by focusing on absurdities like a failing football program and its merger to the Big 10.

Semester highlights prove student voice has impact

(12/10/13 5:00am)

The winter season is upon us and so concludes another semester “On the Banks of the Old Raritan.” These past few months have been fraught with exciting changes for our university. The integration of the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and our acceptance into the Big Ten athletic conference has opened a door of new possibilities for research and involvement. The Rutgers University Student Assembly, our student government, has been hard at work to ensure these new opportunities are serving the students’ best interests and is accessible to all.

U. must consider faculty input to fix serious issues

(12/10/13 5:00am)

While the University’s apparent response to Hurricane Sandy is a step in the right direction, many more steps are needed in a great variety of areas. A few local problems, have plagued Cook Campus departments for decades, and in this case, it happens to be the one I work in. By no means is this a complete list. Literally hundreds of other infrastructural problems have plagued our campus: From extensive heat outages lasting for months at a time, to intentional, secret electrical disconnections of every toxic fume hood in the building, to persistent natural gas leaks. Cook Campus has one electrician for 100 buildings. The list of problems goes on forever. Rutgers Vice President Richard Edwards told me personally that there exists no budgetary provisions for the maintenance any of the new buildings going up all over the University. Maintenance funds come from wherever possible — but not the football budget that is running about $28 million in deficit each year.

Private student loans more problematic than helpful

(11/25/13 5:00am)

Have you ever wondered why students pay such high interest rates to borrow funds for education? If you haven’t, you should. The logical answer is that loans to students with no income are risky. This is completely true. But my bets are that private lenders are not charging only for the additional risk. They are also taking advantage of unsophisticated, unsuspecting student borrowers, as well as not being fully transparent about the rates borrowers may or may not qualify for.

Support for Stan McNeil shouldn’t be blindly given

(11/22/13 5:00am)

There has been a very generous amount of attention paid to Stan NcNeil. I say generous because it certainly reflects the student body wanting to give more of something than is strictly necessary or expected to this otherwise quotidian end of an employee’s career. The Daily Targum’s opinion poll — which, I must confess, is the most pathetic of newspaper tools — currently reads with 55 percent of students supporting the position that “he didn’t do anything to interfere with the responsibilities of his job.” I write this polemic mainly to combat the egregious lack of opposition to this and in the wake of student protests and petitions for his reinstatement.

Get involved in RUSA to have your voice heard

(11/22/13 5:00am)

Over the past couple of weeks, the Rutgers University Student Assembly, or RUSA, has been trying to figure out what is really on student’s minds when it comes to issues that they face at the University. The student government is comprised of only sixty students with sixty unique viewpoints. In order for RUSA to know what students want to see fixed at the University, we need to hear from you!

GREEN programs provide priceless opportunities

(11/20/13 5:00am)

I let the moment sink in. The cool, salty water lapped with a natural rhythm against the surfboard. I sat there, in disbelief. I thought scenes like this were built for the movies, a fiction unattainable in real life. The fire in the sky — made of the bright yellows and warm oranges of the sunset — burned against the deep cool blue of the sea’s passing waves. This moment was the epitome of everything that I had experienced in Costa Rica, the moment where everything came together. I had learned so much about different cultures, the environment, balance in life, and myself.

Hillel apology missing much needed accountability

(11/12/13 5:00am)

On Friday, Andrew Getraer and Ariel Lubow came out with a response to Sara Zayed’s column. As a person mentioned in the article, I feel obligated to respond. I want to start off by rejecting the halfhearted apology I received in the article. Not only did it dismiss incidents of verbal and physical harassment the volunteers and I suffered, but reported them as an isolated incident committed by one person not part of the Rutgers University community. I would like to confirm that as a recipient of such abuse, this is false. “The offending bigot was not a member of the Rutgers Hillel community” as the article puts it, is incorrect. They are students and members of Rutgers I recognize on campus and in my classrooms. It was also more than one person that harassed the Arab and Muslim volunteers.

Misrepresentation of Hillel cannot go uncorrected

(11/08/13 5:00am)

In Tuesday’s Daily Targum, columnist Sara Zayed made a number of comments and accusations against Rutgers Hillel. We hesitate to respond, recognizing that most of the campus couldn’t care less. Foremost, the back and forth between pro-Israel and anti-Israel voices is just noise. We all have better things to do than add to the noise.