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  • Rabbi Chaim Seidler-Feller’s 40-year legacy at an evolving UCLA

    By Jared Sichel

    1 week ago

    Rabbi Chaim Seidler-Feller’s passion, energy and outspokenness haven’t changed much over the past four decades, but his surroundings certainly have.

    Nowhere is this more apparent than in the modest office he now inhabits. It sits one floor above the spacious room he occupied for...

  • Cold shoulders won’t improve education

    2 weeks ago

    Despite the significant growth in size and stature of Israeli universities, and their strong commitment to social justice and the betterment of humankind, some voices in academia persist in trying to isolate Israel’s educational and research institutions through an aggressive...

  • Following anti-Semitic Facebook posts, student speaks out

    2 weeks ago

    On Dec. 16, Janina Montero, UCLA’s vice chancellor for student affairs, released an email in reference to anti-Semitic Facebook posts shared by a member of our UCLA community.

    While I applaud our vice chancellor for condemning the hateful rhetoric, the email — without context or...

  • Free speech, hate speech: Where’s the line at UCLA?

    By Jared Sichel

    3 weeks ago

    Where does UCLA draw the line when it comes to speech and conduct protected by the First Amendment? When are words and actions punishable according to university standards?

    Those are questions some Jewish and pro-Israel UCLA students and faculty have been asking since Lisa Marie...

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  • Rachel Sumekh

    By Danielle Berrin

    December 30, 2015 | 1:33 pm

    Rachel Sumekh remembers the moment when every expectation she had for herself as a “typical Persian girl,” as she put it, changed. 

    It was the summer of 2010, and Sumekh, now 24, had just completed her second year at UCLA. But instead of focusing on finals like everybody else,...

  • The Forward’s CEO salary survey: Good statistics, questionable economics

    By Jared Sichel

    December 15, 2015 | 10:38 pm

    Are the salaries of Jewish nonprofit CEOs too high, too low or just right? Is there gender discrimination when it comes to the salaries of female CEOs of Jewish nonprofits?

    Each year, The Forward newspaper surveys the salaries and gender composition of the CEOs of some of the...

  • A classic Yiddish operetta, revived for a new generation

    December 8, 2015 | 2:23 pm

    “For a German Jew, Yiddish is beneath contempt,” musicologist Michael Ochs told JTA. “German Jews tend to think of Yiddish as bad German. The only use we had in our family for it was to make fun of it.”

    So it is more than a tad ironic that it was Ochs, whose family fled Nazi...

  • Hillel’s triple art exhibition is a celebration through creation

    November 19, 2015 | 10:44 am

    The start of the new school year inevitably means a series of artistic journeys for visitors to Hillel at UCLA. So it goes for the fall quarter, when Hillel’s annual Triple Art Exhibition takes visitors inside the mind and around the world.

    At locations throughout Hillel’s...

  • NBC investigation reopens contamination question at SoCal Jewish camp

    November 10, 2015 | 4:37 pm

    For years, Victoria Tashman didn’t think much of the sonic booms coming from the Santa Susana Field Lab, just uphill from a storied Jewish retreat and campus not far from her Woodland Hills home.

    “It was just part of growing up,” she said.

    But in 2004, when she was diagnosed...

  • The UC’s new dilemma: to name or not to name



    By Judea Pearl

    November 3, 2015 | 4:03 pm

    Dozens of speakers representing a variety of views testified last week at UCLA before a university committee tasked with crafting a University of California systemwide policy to combat anti-Semitism on campuses.

    Many of the speakers favored adoption of the U.S. State Department’s...

  • UC holds forum on statement against intolerance

    By Jared Sichel

    October 28, 2015 | 3:32 pm

    Five weeks after the University of California’s Board of Regents rejected the “Statement of Principles Against Intolerance” drafted by UC President Janet Napolitano’s office, a UC-appointed “working group” held a forum Oct. 26 at UCLA, where the public was free to comment on the...

  • Two short of a Minyan—The 1951 UCLA football team

    October 15, 2015 | 2:36 pm

    This football season, UCLA’s Jewish quarterback, Josh Rosen, is the talk of the chosen, especially considering he was named the Southern California Jewish Sports Hall of Fame Male High School Athlete of the year for 2015. But forgotten today is that, in 1951, UCLA’s football team...

  • Moving and shaking: Rosh Hashanah at City Hall, ‘Understanding the Iran nuclear deal’ and more

    By Ryan Torok

    September 24, 2015 | 2:09 pm

    A Sept. 18 Rosh Hashanah celebration filled Los Angeles City Hall with the sounds of the shofar. “Tekiah gedolah,” said Rabbi Joshua Hoffman of Valley Beth Shalom, before delivering a long — and loud — blast on the ram’s horn.

    As part of the event, The Jewish Federation of...

  • UC regents reject much-hyped ‘principles of intolerance.’ Napolitano: ‘More work needs to be done’

    By Jared Sichel

    September 17, 2015 | 5:40 pm

    After months of anticipation over whether the University of California’s Board of Regents would adopt a definition of anti-Semitism in the wake of several anti-Israel and anti-Jewish incidents across its campuses, the UC’s governing arm rejected a “Statement of Principles Against...

  • Death makes life matter: Thoughts on my brother’s passing

    By Jared Sichel

    September 16, 2015 | 10:55 am

    Last February, I joined a club. It wasn’t my choice. It’s one of the worst clubs around, and if you’re not already in it, I hope you don’t become a member. If I could quit, I would. But the bylaws forbid it.

    Like all clubs, this one has its benefits, too. It provides a community...

  • Smooth sax player Dave Koz on a career that just ... happened

    By Jared Sichel

    August 19, 2015 | 11:41 am

    When jazz saxophonist Dave Koz’s “dream” car was stolen in 1997 after he stopped for five minutes to pick up a sandwich at a restaurant in the San Fernando Valley, it was perhaps the lowest point of his life.

    Yes, his second album, “Lucky Man,” had already gone gold and, still in...

  • Theodore Bikel, actor, singer and activist, 91

    By Tom Tugend

    July 21, 2015 | 2:55 pm

    Theodore Bikel, folk singer, actor, liberal activist, Zionist and multilinguist, died of natural causes July 21 at the UCLA Medical Center. He was 91.

    Nicknamed Theo, Bikel was born in 1924 in Vienna and, as a 14-year-old in 1938, watched as Nazi troops march into his hometown...

  • To defeat BDS, enlist Israeli Americans

    July 15, 2015 | 12:09 pm

    American Jewry has witnessed a tsunami of hate on college campuses and across our communities. In the past year, resolutions calling for a divestment and boycott of Israel have been considered or passed by 30 student governments across the U.S. Israel haters have charged Jewish...

  • Should the UC define anti-Semitism? Yes, adopt the State Dept. version

    June 24, 2015 | 3:27 pm

    Dear Honorable Members of the University of California Board of Regents:

    We are 32 organizations representing hundreds of thousands of supporters who are deeply concerned about the safety and well-being of Jewish students at the University of California. In light of the alarming...

  • A Father’s Day gift of justice

    By David Suissa

    June 18, 2015 | 5:24 pm

    If you ever visit the Vienna campus of Wirtschafts University Wien (WU), one of Europe’s most prestigious universities, you will see a translucent metal sculpture in the shape of a globe, which prominently features the names of 150 Jews. I got to hear the story of that dramatic...

  • An artist with heart

    By Tess Cutler

    June 10, 2015 | 3:01 pm

    Alexandra Kugler, 18
    Palisades Charter High School
    Going to: Tulane University

    Alexandra Kugler hasn’t missed a single day of school in 13 years (that includes kindergarten). She has a perfect attendance record on her 4.0 GPA transcript. Once, in seventh grade, she fainted...

  • A (future) doctor in the house

    June 10, 2015 | 1:53 pm

    Natalie Yakobia, 18
    New Community Jewish High School
    Going to: UCLA

    Natalie Yakobian is only 18, but she’s already seen someone’s heart being restarted and witnessed the birth of a child while on an ambulance ride-along, part of her Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) class at...

  • Letters to the Editor: Dennis Prager, UCLA and Shavuot

    June 3, 2015 | 4:41 pm

    Prager vs. Presner

    We read with concern Dennis Prager’s attack on the UCLA Alan D. Leve Center for Jewish Studies and its director, professor Todd Presner (“The UCLA Center for Jewish Studies,” May 22). As members of the center’s faculty advisory committee, we would like to offer...

  • L.A. Times lets UCLA professor incriminate self again

    June 3, 2015 | 2:01 pm

    The Los Angeles Times has done it again, handing UCLA professor Saree Makdisi space on its commentary pages for another virtually fact-free, anti-Israel column. The third this year (and at least 10th in the Times since 2004), Makdisi’s “Wrongfully treating academic debates as...

  • Why I support SCR 35: An open letter to state Sen. Jeff Stone

    June 3, 2015 | 1:51 pm

    Much of the campus climate at UCLA revolves around identities and identity politics. Students champion their identities and their communities in a way that the rest of the world should strive to emulate. This reality, while it adds to the tapestry that is the UCLA community,...

  • The L.A. Times lets Saree Makdisi incriminate himself, again

    June 1, 2015 | 1:28 pm

    The Los Angeles Times has done it again, handing U.C.L.A. Prof. Saree Makdisi space on its commentary pages for another virtually fact-free, anti-Israel column. The third this year (and at least tenth in The Times since 2004), Makdisi’s “Wrongfully treating academic debates as...

  • In a war against wage theft

    May 27, 2015 | 2:13 pm

    “At his day thou shalt give him his hire, neither shall the sun go down upon it, for he is poor and his life depends on it. …” – Deuteronomy 24:15

    Last week, Los Angeles’ City Council voted to raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2020. The decision was greeted with...

  • Car accident puts inventor on his life’s path

    By Ayala Or-el

    May 21, 2015 | 4:18 pm

    Josh (Yehoshua) Shachar’s resume is impressive: more than 160 patents on innovations he has helped develop, founder of more than 10 high-tech companies and author of countless research papers. A typical day for him could mean working on multimillion-dollar aircraft and missiles for...

  • UC President Janet Napolitano wants UC to regard some anti-Israel views as anti-Semitic

    By Jared Sichel

    May 21, 2015 | 12:11 pm

    On the final day of a meeting in San Francisco among the University of California’s Board of Regents, UC President Janet Napolitano said in a radio interview with 90.9 WBUR in Boston that her “personal view” is that the UC should adopt the State Department’s definition of...

  • The UCLA Center for Jewish Studies, Judea Pearl and Cornel West

    By Dennis Prager

    May 20, 2015 | 3:51 pm

    Last month, the Jewish Journal published a plea from Judea Pearl, Chancellor’s Professor of Computer Science and Statistics at UCLA and president of the Daniel Pearl Foundation. Daniel Pearl was the writer for the Wall Street Journal who was murdered by Islamists in Pakistan. Judea...

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