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Good Question for Elul: How Do We Really Define Our Sense of Personal and Communal Obligation?

Posted on Wednesday, August 27, 2014 by Malka Fleischmann

To unravel the complexity of our Wexner Graduate Fellowship Summer Institute's theme, fellows had to explore the personal and communal implications of Jewish "obligation." With so many fellows in disagreement about whether their Jewishness and Jewish leadership necessarily implied a theologically, culturally or historically driven sense of obligation, it was challenging to create frameworks for our conversations. Amazingly enough, though, as the institute drew to a close with preparations for th…

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Living With the Tension of Empathy Instead of Black and White

Posted on Wednesday, August 27, 2014 by Barbara Langsam Shuman

One of our local journalists compared metropolitan St. Louis to the fictional "Mayberry," the setting of the Andy Griffith Show.  While that’s a stretch – metropolitan St. Louis encompasses 11 counties, and St. Louis County is an amalgam of 90-plus municipalities, including Ferguson – so many of us have had contact with some of the major "players" in this far-reaching tragedy. I know many of the individuals who have been at the center of the Ferguson story and it…

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The Importance of Jewish Summer Camp in My Life

Posted on Wednesday, August 27, 2014 by Rodney Freeman

As the proud father of four Jewish summer campers, the husband of a Jewish summer camper and a former Jewish camper myself, I can tell you that camps had a profound impact on my family’s connection to Judaism. While I’m passionate about making sure more kids in our community can attend Jewish summer camps, I also love cycling. That’s why I decided to bring the two together. In the spring of 2013, I brought my idea for a community cycling event to benefit local summer camps to …

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Be a Stronger Wind

Posted on Tuesday, August 19, 2014 by Monica Rodriguez Kuniyoshi

If you’re reading this, you know the power of a Wexner Institute. This was my first exposure to the intense intellectual stimulation and deep commitment of the entire Wexner enterprise, as experienced at the Wexner Heritage New Member Institute in Aspen that just finished last Friday. Deciding where to focus this reflection has been difficult—should I emphasize the numerous ah-ha moments inspired by the excellent faculty? The easy camaraderie among the San Francisco, Denver and New E…

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Convene Challenge Collaborate

Posted on Tuesday, August 19, 2014 by Devin Schain

I wanted to let the Wexner Network know about a fortuitous overlap of events. For those planning to attend the General Assembly this year in Washington, D.C., taking place November 9 – 11, you will be in town during National Education Week. I am involved in National Education Week through some pro bono work I do trying to close the achievement gap,  and know many in the Wexner Network also have education at the forefront of their Jewish agendas. National Education Week is the only eve…

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Heard Round WexWorld: Robin Williams

Posted on Thursday, August 14, 2014 by Dr. Stephen Hazan Arnoff

Dr. Stephen Hazan Arnoff, a Wexner Graduate Fellowship Alum (Class 13) is Director of Culture, Community, and Society at Shalem College. He also has a blog called Talkin' Hava Nagilah Blues, where he recently explored the multiple meaning of stars, and how we measure our lives by them.  “The same week that Robin Williams died, a friend of mine noted, five hundred children were said to be suffocated in the hinterlands of Iraq by ISIS, which combines the worst of the Crusaders, the Naz…

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#ThanksWex #Well #Seattle12

Posted on Thursday, August 14, 2014 by Beth Balkany

    There is a mystical tradition that the world has 36 hidden tzadikim. These are special and humble people and legend explains they are usually unknown to us. At our new member retreat in Aspen, Colorado (now two years ago) we were privileged to meet and be inspired by Dr. Rick Hodes. He has dedicated his life to healing, making an impact, and tikkun olam. I would like to posit that Dr. Hodes should be counted as one of those special and hidden souls. Dr. Hodes has spent more tha…

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Entrepreneurial Philanthropy Impacting Camp Affordability and More

Posted on Tuesday, August 05, 2014 by Tracey Bilski

As a Wexner Heritage alumna and a lay leader in the Jewish communal world for more than 20 years, I’m always on the lookout for social and philanthropic innovation. So when Joseph Hyman, the founder of The Center for Entrepreneurial Jewish Philanthropy (CEJP), an organization that is seeking to change the Jewish philanthropic paradigm, approached me last summer, I saw an opportunity to help shape the future of Jewish philanthropy. At a time when more philanthropic dollars are going to univ…

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Learning Torah Through Partnership

Posted on Tuesday, August 05, 2014 by Allison Cook & Orit Kent

We wanted to share the latest representation of our work. This work and our current collaboration were born in the Wexner Graduate Fellowship, and we continue to be grateful for all we have received from the Foundation and our Wexner colleagues.   The video, through the words and images of middle school students, brings to life our most recent design research around meaningful engagement with both peers and texts. "Pedagogy of Partnership" is a program we've developed for learners of all …

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