Be attentive to planning. Whether putting together a single program or a years’ worth of events, careful planning is your investment in positive, well received programming. Interesting programming dynamics will arise and by being mindful of these dynamics you will be successful in your endeavours.
Use your perspective on what is happening in the Jewish community and the university community and apply this perspective to how you go about programming. Use all your resources (especially human resources) to envision a year of programming that will be rich and impacting on your campus and your Jewish community.
One of the most crucial areas of building Jewish life on your campus is programming / activities. There are many different types of programs and it is important to tailor your programming to the population you wish to attract. Brainstorm with other students (leaders and those who may not be involved) and create an array of programs that will be fun and may impact Jews and Jewishness on your campus.
Programs that happen on a yearly basis. These programs are considered to be traditional because students look forward to them and count on them to take place. They are also widely known as past participants share information about them with first timers, aiding your recruitment efforts. Often times, groups become known to the campus for their traditional programs.
Examples: Holiday orientated programs, parties, Orientation / Welcome week, Trips
Theme day/week/month programs
Programs that revolve around a certain topics, issue or event and are important enough to require more than a day for programming Examples: Jewish Awareness Month (JAM), Jewish Experience Week, Holocaust Awareness Week, Israeli-Palestinian Peace Week, One World Week, International Student Day, Good Deeds Day, Mitzvah Day, Global Day of Jewish Learning.
Programs that are offspring of other programs that ware already established or implemented elsewhere on campus. Examples: Theme Awareness Events (Gender, Culture), Major speaker’s series, Season oriented programs (Spring Fling, Homecoming…)
The main purpose of a passive program is to inform individuals about a specific topic, issue or event. Often passive programs can spark conversation among community members. Examples: Door hangers, Survival kits / care packages, Bulletin boards, Brochures / flyers on specific topics.
Shabbat dinner in the residence halls – this program allows unaffiliated students to attend Shabbat dinner where they feel most comfortable, in their residence hall rooms with their friends. Work with resident assistants and students in a particular hall to organize and publicise the event. If possible, arrange for the cost of the meal to be covered by the students’ meal plan/donations. Provide an information sheet about Shabbat.