MEOR Northwestern is an incredibly warm, social, and active campus.
Led by the dynamic duo families of the Livingstones and the Luries, they have truly made their own unique mark on the Jewish scene at Northwestern.
Rabbi Josh and Tamar Livingstone came to Northwestern in 2006. They hoped to “create a home away from home on campus,” says Tamar. Six years later, they have clearly been a huge success, and only continue to grow and improve year by year. Rabbi Yitzchak and Julie Lurie arrived at the beginning of the 2011-2012 academic year, after having run MEOR at Brown University for four years.
Aside from the regular exciting MEOR programming such as Maimonides I & II, weekly Shabbat meals on campus, one-on-one learning, and women’s programming, MEOR Northwestern has also introduced a few innovative programs and events throughout the past year. This past April, the first annual “MEOR Noshfest: A Celebration of Jewish Cuisine” was held in the Norris Student Center. The evening featured various Jewish-themed foods such as “Jews at Bubbes House,” “Jews on Shabbat,” “Jews in Morocco,” “Jews on Passover,” “Jews in Israel,” and even “Jews on Christmas” (Chinese food, of course). Over the course of the event, more than 150 students showed up to enjoy the food, enter a raffle for prizes, and socialize with the rest of their MEOR friends and teachers.
Another original program this year was “MEOR-Tag”. On a random evening of the week, any MEOR Northwestern student might come back to their dorm room with a surprise waiting for them: a basket full of delicious home-baked goodies like brownies, challah and cookies, and other fun prizes. A note on the basket announces “You’ve been M-Tagged By your Friends at MEOR Northwestern!” and photos of the tagged room are posted in the next week’s e-newsletter. Upon receiving his M-Tag surprise, one student quickly posted on the MEOR Northwestern Facebook page: “Meor just made my day infinitely better!! Come visit me if you want a lot of delicious kosher food.”
MEOR Northwestern has also had an exceptionally joyous summer, with two different alumni weddings happening on the very same weekend. Former students Michelle Jacobs ’11 and Andrew Penn ’09 met while they were undergrads, and just tied the knot on June 24th. Jeff Cohen ‘10, another MEOR Northwestern alum, got married on the very next night: all in all, an extremely eventful weekend for the Northwestern family.
It Just Keeps Getting Better
With everything that’s going on at MEOR Northwestern, the student community is clearly a very lively, energetic, and tight-knit bunch. Shabbat meals are typically attended by 50+ students, both Maimonides I & II get rave reviews – this year the president of Northwestern, Morton Schapiro, was one of the speakers – and everyone feels incredibly welcome and happy to be a part of the MEOR family in Chicago.