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  1. […] Crossposted at New Voices […]

  2. Rachel
    Aug 30 - 2:14 pm

    Hey Laura!

    You sound awesome and strong. Don’t change who you are–just stay open, friendly and confident. Continue to approach people. You probably know by now – most people are insecure and just want others to like them. So ask them about themselves–people love that. And once you get a few people talking, you’ll be able to decide who you actually want as a friend.

    Oh and if all fails, go study abroad!

  3. Laura
    Aug 30 - 8:38 pm

    Thanks, Rachel!
    I would like to study abroad…naturally Israel is on my school’s Do Not Travel list, but maybe I can convince them that New York qualifies as “abroad”.

  4. David A.M. Wilensky
    Sep 01 - 10:22 am

    Don’t worry about that Do Not Travel list. We had one at Drew until we pointed out that students could just sign a liability waiver and then everyone moved on with life.

  5. Sarah
    Oct 24 - 4:22 pm

    Hi… I’m having a similar experience. I go to RPI (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute) and while the people at Hillel are friendly and welcoming, I am more religious than most of them. It hasn’t made them dislike me, but it’s really hard for me to keep Shabbat when almost no one else is. And all we do in Hillel is maariv and Shabbat dinner, not even a full kabbalat shabbat, and we don’t do anything on Shabbat day. I’m trying to change things by planning a “freshman shabbat” where we’ll have a kabbalat shabbat workshop, dinner, tisch, shabbat lunch, and seudah shlishit, but I don’t know if it’ll catch on. And even if I can make things happen, I’ll have to work so hard to do it. I think I would really be happier somewhere else, so I’m thinking of transferring. And actually, I know someone who went to William and Mary and also didn’t like their Hillel, so she transferred.

    If you’d like to contact me, my email is

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