On October 12th, ORT University students attended a special lecture given by Professor Jack Drassinover, who teaches Israeli politics and Zionism at Machon Le Madrichim. The title of the event was “Mapping Israel in the 21st Century.”
Ilan Bajarlia, the CAMERA Campus Fellow at ORT University who organized the event, was pleased with the event’s overall success. Ilan says that “15 outstanding Jewish and Non-Jewish undergraduate and post-graduate students of International Affairs, Political Science, Journalism and Economics” attended the lecture. Professor Jack Drassinover discussed Israeli current affairs, specifically those related to the conflict, and he also spoke about the Arab Spring. In addition, he highlighted the unique relationship between Israel and those residing in the Diaspora, laying out the challenges each group currently faces.
Ilan was pleased that students were able to discuss another important issue at the event: The fact that Jewish students lack a framework through which they can get involved in both Jewish and non-Jewish affairs on campus. Some students discussed ways in which Jewish students could get more involved on campus, and Ilan brought forth his ideas on how to engage non-Jewish students in various programs.
The goals of the event were for the most part met, says Ilan. The evening provided a platform for learning about and debating Israeli affairs with an expert Israeli professor, and it provided an opportunity to build relationships within a group of interested students that will be likely to participate in future events of this nature. This event is part of a larger effort to garner support for Jewish and Israeli programming in Uruguay.
With the success of this event, Ilan is looking forward to working on other such programs in Uruguay. As the first CAMERA Fellow in Uruguay, Ilan is truly leading the way to building well-informed communities in Uruguay on matters concerning Israel and the Jewish people.
Contributed by CAMERA Intern Ariella Charny