Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Showcasing Judaism

For the past four years, the Jewish Cultural Collective has
been showcasing Jewish culture on the University of Wisconsin campus with the
goal of enriching the lives of all students, regardless of religion.

"The JCC is committed to promoting Jewish culture on
campus," JCC chair and UW senior Alex Sheridan said. "We try to create programs
that focus on Jewish culture and contributions, but you do not have to be
Jewish to come to the events or be on the staff. Jewish culture impacts
everyone in one way or another."

The organization was formed because students were looking
for a way to promote Judaism independently of religion and politics, Sheridan


JCC communications director and UW junior Rachel Lansing insists
the organization is for all students.

"Granted, there are connections to promoting Jewish culture,
but it also engages the student demographic as a whole, regardless of religious
affiliation," she said. "The JCC brings a fresh perspective, is very
student-oriented and gives students a chance to really be active in the campus

One goal of the JCC is to provide students with cultural
experiences different from those offered by other Jewish campus organizations,
Lansing said.

"There is no other organization that brings in speakers,
puts out a magazine or has a theater program and film challenge," Lansing said.

The JCC provides many artistic outlets for students,
including film festivals, theater productions and a magazine. The organization
holds two film festivals a year, one of which features films by amateur

"Students from across the country are given the opportunity
to create, write, direct and star in their own films," Lansing said. "The films
have to somehow incorporate Jewish culture."

The Major Events Series is another way the JCC brings
attention to Jewish culture.

"We bring major speakers to campus, and they speak about
Jewish culture and how being Jewish has applied to their careers," Sheridan

The Voice, JCC's student magazine, was also created to
promote Jewish culture around campus and to address college issues, both
religious and otherwise.

"The magazine covers everything from why a Jewish girl wants
to marry a non-Jewish boy to Israeli politics to the pros and cons of Jewish
holidays," Voice editor and UW junior Lauren Rollins said. "It is a mix of
serious and less serious material. It has a lot of college-themed issues in
general, too. It's not all religion-related."

Rollins added the magazine is staffed entirely by student
JCC members.

"We had about 18 writers this time around, and the staff is
not all Jewish," Rollins said. "The first issue will be out in about two weeks.
We have an issue coming out every semester, but we hope to increase it to a
couple per semester."

Two thousand copies of the magazine will be printed and
distributed this semester, Rollins said.

The JCC is one of several student organizations funded
through segregated fees.

The organization received $158,219 for the 2007-08 academic
year, according to Associated Students of Madsion Student Service Finance
Committee records — the group that allocates segregated fees.

"$123,000 goes toward the programming budget," JCC financial
manager and UW junior Justin Walder said.

He said the programming budget is used to bring in speakers
from across the country and sponsor theater productions, including BJ: A
Musical Romp. Some of the money is also used for advertising and paying the
organization's all-student staff.

This year, every UW
student pays $429.08 in segregated fees. A portion of this fee funds various
student organizations throughout campus, including University Health Services
and the ASM Bus Pass. Look for future features on other organizations students
help fund.

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