Since 2013, this painting called “Palestinian Roots” has been prominently displayed at York University’s Student Centre (http://yusc.ca/). A primary hub for all York students, the Student Centre needs to be just that—a safe haven for all. However, by keeping this particular painting up, York’s administration continues to send the message that the university has taken a side. Therefore, any Jewish student who needs to walk by this depiction could feel anxious, nervous, concerned, frustrated, fearful and plain unsafe on campus. The painting which won a November 2013 contest was supposed to be displayed for two years and removed November 2015. But as of February 1, 2015, it is still up.
At the Centre for Jewish Culture and Education (CJCE) we prepare and train Toronto’s Jewish high school students to successfully navigate the university campus. This includes detailing available administrative avenues to triumphantly address anti-Semitism both overt, subtle and in academic assignments.
We also advise and counsel Ontario’s Jewish university students on how to speak the truth about Israel and strategically combat anti-Semitism. University students will learn to effectively protect themselves while simultaneously propelling their academic careers forward.
End result: CJCE high school and university students will be thoroughly prepared to become successful Jewish community leaders and advocates.
Our High School Program
Goals: Engage Toronto’s Jewish high school students and get them university-ready. Teach them to navigate the university campus as Jews day-to-day, including protecting their human and legal rights.
Strategy: Our practical, 20-hour curriculum will be developed and administered online at our website via interactive blog, written student testimonials, student video testimonials and through a variety of social media. Sections of the curriculum will also take place live via interactive webinar as well as onsite at Jewish high schools, public high schools with considerable Jewish populations, synagogues and other appropriate cultural and educational venues.
In fact, our four-pronged, high-school curriculum will be specifically designed to nurture our students’ emotional, spiritual, physical and intellectual growth and confidence. By helping students build their awareness, knowledge and perspective in these four key foundation areas, they will become better equipped as Jewish leaders both on campus and in life.