On the first weekend of November, the International Student Shabbaton was held in New York City, where Texas A&M students, together with the directors of the Chabad Jewish Student Center, Rabbi Yossi and Manya Lazaroff, joined over 750 other students from around the world for a weekend of inspiration and student leadership.
The weekend began with a student leadership conference where selected students from different universities gathered in Manhattan for two days of intensive student leadership training. “We met many business philanthropists and marketing executives who really inspired us with the work they do and shared many ideas on how we can be good leaders on our campus,” explained Ryan Coane, the sophomore treasurer of the Chabad Jewish Student Group at Texas A&M and the director of finance of Student Government–Diversity at Texas A&M. “In addition, we got to meet other student leaders from other Chabads on Campus to share and exchange ideas.” The president of the Chabad Jewish Student Group, Naomi Heller, a sophomore majoring in animal science at Texas A&M, also attended the leadership conference. She said, “It is amazing to see so many Jewish guys and girls who want to help increase Jewish life on their campus!”
The Chabad Jewish Student Center at Texas A&M opened in July 2007. Since that beginning in the home of the Lazaroffs, Chabad at Texas A&M now owns, and operates out of, a 4,000-square-foot facility with plans to expand!
For Shabbat, the students converged into the Crown Heights neighborhood of Brooklyn at the world headquarters of Chabad Lubavitch and the Chabad on Campus International Foundation for a Shabbat Experience. With inspirational speakers and lively atmosphere throughout the weekend, the Shabbat experience was enhanced with the multitude of students joining in. “There was so much energy, I hope to carry some of that back with me to Texas A&M!” exclaimed Chad Davis, a senior Corps of Cadets member at Texas A&M.
Saturday night, students were treated with a live concert from YOOD, a band from Israel that is currently touring the U.S.A. A surprise guest, critically-lauded rock troubadour and Emmy-nominated film and television composer, Peter Himmelman, joined the evening.
“I loved the weekend with all the singing, dancing and touring New York City and, best of all, meeting so many Jews from all over the world. We are all family at Chabad!” Davis exclaimed.
The Chabad Jewish Center at Texas A&M is independently funded by friends and families. For more information or to make a donation, contact Rabbi Yossi and Manya Lazaroff at 979-220-5020 or on the Web at www.jewishaggies.com.