Shana Tova, and wishing you a meaningful fast next week. My name is Sylvia Coopersmith, I am the Northeast Regional Director for Maccabee Task Force.
We’re at the end of September which means one thing for MTF – Maccabee Action Plan season! What exactly is an “Action Plan?” Once a year, each campus partner hosts an Action Plan meeting, during which their respective MTF regional director sits down with the pro-Israel students and staff on campus to plan a slate of pro-Israel programming, which centers on a Fact Finders trip to Israel for student influencers.
These meetings are a chance for our partners to critically assess their campuses in terms of the obstacles, or lack thereof, faced by Jewish and pro-Israel students, as well as to tailor a campus-specific approach to educating the wider student body about Israel. These get-togethers are also an opportunity for MTF regional directors like myself to connect with students, convey to them our appreciation for their pro-Israel advocacy, and stress to them the importance and urgency of our joint mission.
The conversations that happen during Action Plan meetings usually run far deeper than just programming. Students often discuss their own harrowing experiences on campus being Jewish and pro-Israel, such as being accosted by fellow students with unprovoked shouts of “Free Palestine” when walking to class, spotting swastikas on campus, and being subjected to inequitable treatment by faculty and administration.
Given the many challenges our partners face, they come to the Action Plan meetings full of programmatic ideas and determined to work with us to make their campuses more welcoming environments for pro-Israel and Jewish students. From my perspective, it’s reassuring to witness our partners’ passion for Israel and steadfast dedication to defending the Jewish State. I hope you, like I, find their enthusiasm and resolve encouraging as we embark on this new year, one which is bound to present us with greater challenges than ever. Thank you for your continued support!
Northeast Campus Director
Maccabee Task Force