More than 20 groups and initiatives operate within Hillel.
Community Service/Social Action
Generations works toward bridging the gap between senior citizens and college students. The two groups meet for social events at Brandeis and the seniors’ home in Newton.
Mitzvah Corps is the umbrella organization for all things tzedek, but not specifically planned by Hillel’s Tzedek Coordinators. Mitzvah Corps is famous for its monthly Cheryl Ann’s challah sales, the proceeds of which go to charity. In addition, members of Mitzvah Corps are responsible for various seasonal clothing and food drives and other mitzvah projects. Mitzvah Corps also oversees two sub-groups: Generations and Sunday’s Bread.
Sunday’s Bread provides opportunities for students to work in a soup kitchen. Volunteers assist in all aspects of preparing and serving meals to the homeless, and participate in a truly rewarding and purposeful way with members of the Boston community.
Ba’note is Hillel’s all-female a cappella group and is “kol-isha friendly,” meaning that its performances adhere to religious beliefs about women’s singing in public. They sing both English and Hebrew, Jewish and non-Jewish songs, utilizing trios rather than solos.
Brandeis Organization of Sephardic Students (BOSS) increases awareness and appreciation of Sephardic Jewry and culture, through communal activities, ethnic experiences, education and spiced food.
B’yachad, Brandeis’ Israeli dance troupe, holds open dancing sessions each semester and performs regularly both on- and off-campus at cultural events, parties, and Israeli Folk Dancing Festivals.
Hillel First Year Council (FYC) empowers new students to play an active role in building a welcoming Jewish community on campus through programming by and for First Years.
Hillel Theater Group (HTG), one of the largest and most active theater groups on campus, is the only theater group that does not rehearse or perform on Shabbat or Jewish holidays. HTG co-produces 24-hour Musical at the beginning of each school year, and produces a play in the fall and a musical in the spring. All who audition for 24-hour Musical and the spring musical are guaranteed a role.
Jewish Fella A Cappella (JFA) is Hillel’s all-male Jewish a cappella group. They sing a variety of songs in English, Hebrew, and Yiddish that generally have some Jewish aspect, be it religious, cultural or otherwise.
Manginah is Hillel’s co-ed a cappella group. They perform original, contemporary, and traditional songs in Hebrew, English, and Yiddish. Manginah regularly performs on campus to enthusiastic audiences on- and off-campus.
Yiddish Club provides opportunities to celebrate the Yiddish language and Ashkenazi culture, through awareness and appreciation of Ashkenzai Jewry and culture, through communal meetings, film screenings, signing parties, field trips, and on and off campus trips.
Holocaust Remembrance Committee (HRC) commemorates and educates about the Holocaust, specifically planning large-scale remembrance programs around the Kristallnacht anniversary and Yom HaShoah.
Klal Hillel Pluralism Initiative is a dialogue group that brings together and strengthens ties among Jewish students from all backgrounds, observances, and denominations.
Shalem is Brandeis University’s Jewish LGBTQ group. They hold frequent discussions and plan programs about LGBTQ issues in relation to Judaism.
Brandeis Israel Public Affairs Committee (BIPAC) is a bipartisan pro-Israel political activist group on campus that focuses on maintaining and strengthening the US-Israel relationship through engaging elected officials, student leaders, and key constituencies on campus.
Judges for Israel (JFI) provides educational, cultural, and social justice Israel programming for the Brandeis community.
J Street U–Brandeis is the Brandeis affiliate of the J-Street political organization.
Brandeis Orthodox Organization (BOO) serves the needs of Orthodox students on campus, and welcomes any students wishing to learn more about Orthodox Judaism.
Brandeis Reconstructionist Organization (BRO) serves students interested in Reconstructionist Judaism and organizes social, educational and religious events.
Brandeis Reform Chavurah (BaRuCH) serves the Reform Jewish community on campus, holding a variety of educational, social action, religious, and social programs.
Brandeis University Conservative Organization (BUCO) serves the Conservative Jewish community, providing educational, social action, and social events on a regular basis.
Kehilat Sha’ar is an independent, egalitarian and vibrant community. Sha’ar holds a communal Shabbat experience, including services.
Prayer Services: Hillel’s Minyanim
Orthodox: BOO’s gabbaim coordinate a daily Orthodox minyan: three times a day, every day, as well as on Shabbat and holidays.
Conservative: The Brandeis Conservative Minyan, an affiliate of BUCO, holds Shacharit services on Monday and Thursday mornings, as well as weekly Shabbat services and holiday services.
Reconstructionist: BRO coordinates monthly Friday night services and Saturday morning services about once a semester.
Reform: BaRuCH coordinates holiday services, weekly Kabbalat Shabbat and havdallah services, and Saturday morning services about once a month.
Kehilat Sha’ar: Kehilat Sha’ar features a monthly traditional egalitarian prayer service with lots of singing.
Sephardi: The Brandeis Organization of Sephardic Students coordinates a Sephardic service about once a month.
Shira Chadasha: The Shira Chadasha minyan features a prayer service with a mechitza (a separation between men and women), with a Kabbalat Shabbat led by a woman. The minyan holds one Friday night service each month. Find more information here.