A Packed Summer Update From JET 

By Rabbi Zev Kahn 


We tell our students that once they become a part of JET, they join the JET family. We really mean it. We treat our students like our own children. Many of our students we have known for many years and continue to play an active role in their lives. Cameron and Chaya are two such students.

We are especially excited to wish mazal tov to Cameron Erickson on his engagement to Batya Carl of Silver Spring, MD. We first met Cameron as an undergrad at DePaul way back in Spring 2012. After completed the Maimonides crash course in Judaism, Cameron continued learning with JET Rabbis and continues to this day. He has come for Shabbat to West Rogers Park countless times, went to Israel first on a learning and touring trip and then to learn full time at Shapell’s Darchei Noam yeshiva. A Political Science major, Cameron now lives in Washington, DC, where he founded Six Point Strategies, a PR company.

Nothing gives us more nachas than celebrating, in person or far from afar, the weddings of our students. We want to wish Ben Weinstein of Scarsdale, NY and Shana Segal of Johannesburg a big mazal tov on their recent marriage in Johannesburg.

Ben, a graduate of University of Michigan, moved to Chicago in the fall of 2014 and immediately became very involved with JET, learning and coming for Shabbat regularly. He then moved to Jerusalem to study in yeshiva for a few years. May Ben and Shoshana build a beautiful Jewish home together.

Olami North American Conference: JET is proud to be a Member of Olami, (www.olami.org) an organization that impacts 40,000 students in 320 centers in 30 countries around the world. This past Monday and Tuesday, Rabbi Mordi Rubin, JET’s campus rabbi in Champaign and I attended the Olami North American mekarvim conference in Danbury, CT. Over two days, we bonded with fellow mekarvim (outreach rabbis), shared programming ideas and celebrated at a beautiful banquet dinner the completion of the entire Talmud in memory of two special needs children who passed away recently. We attended sessions such as: “Practical pointers for a powerful Poland trip,” “Running an awesome Shabbat table” and “Engaging new freshmen from their first day on campus.” The conference gave us all inspiration as the new school year approaches.

SHABBAT ON THE LAKE: This past Friday I attended Shabbat on the Lake, a JCC sponsored event that drew over 500 Jewish young professionals to a fun evening at the Peggy Notebart Museum. It was especially nice to meet up with JET students who recently graduated from U of I.

TEAM JET HAS FUN ON CHARITY RIDE: This past Sunday, I joined almost 50 riders on the first Midwest Charity Ride. I chose the 35 mile route and had a great time. You can see a satellite view of my ride at https://www.facebook.com/zev.kahn/videos/10156540992146094/ 

Together with other members of TEAM JET, we raised money for JET and four other local organizations. You can see how all the teams did at https://www.rayze.it/midwestcharityride

 JET & THE JLE: One of the Israel programs JET students love is the JLE (http://jle.ohr.edu/ ). This summer, U of I grad, Zack Parker, is on the JLE and is enjoying the learning and touring. The highlight is the Mentors Mission, where businessmen from the US join the program for 5 days, including Shabbaty in Sfat. Each student is partnered with a mentor. Zack’s mentor is Dan Shmikler, who he met on the Maimonides Shabbaton in West Rogers Park.