Tufts Hillel Records
Scope and Contents
- 1979 -- 2018
Conditions Governing Use
Immediate Source of Acquisition
4.45 Linear Feet
197 Digital Object(s) (197 digital objects comprising 5825 files. )
Language of Materials
Biographical / Historical
Tufts Hillel is a student-run organization that sponsors social, cultural, educational, and religious programs and events that reach the entire Tufts community. These activities have included lecture series, Yiddish and Hebrew language classes, Shabbat services, and a Holocaust and genocide studies program. Tufts Hillel also runs a full range of religious services and meals for all Jewish holidays and has partnered with Tufts Dining to provide kosher dining options on campus.
In 1994, Tufts Hillel built and opened the Granoff Family Hillel Center at 220 Packard Avenue, which provides offices, meeting spaces, and kosher kitchens and still serves as the home of Tufts Hillel.
Rabbi Jeffrey Summitt was the Executive Director of Tufts Hillel from 1979-2018. Rabbi Naftali Brawer was appointed Tufts’ Jewish Chaplain and Neubauer Executive Director of Tufts Hillel in May 2018.
Biographical / Historical
Jeffrey A. Summit graduated from Brandeis University in 1972. He received his rabbinic ordination and an M.A.H.L. from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 1975. He holds an M.A. (1988) and Ph.D. (1995) at Tufts University in Ethnomusicology through the Interdisciplinary Doctoral.
Summit came to Tufts in 1979 as the Jewish Chaplain and Neubauer Executive Director of Tufts Hillel, a position he held until 2018. Under his direction, the Hillel program at Tufts was nationally recognized for its focus and active engagement on issues such as social justice and active citizenship, interfaith and intercultural cooperation, and Israeli-Palestinian conflicts. He received the inaugural Edgar M. Bronfman Award for Lifetime Accomplishment in Hillel Professional Leadership from Hillel International in 2014. In 2018, he received the Hosea Ballou Medal at Tufts for his leadership and service at Tufts Hillel. As of 2018, Summit continues to serve as a Senior Consultant at Hillel International, directing the program “Living Our Values.”
Summit also played an important role at the Tufts European Center in Talloires, France, where he taught and led summer programs, and has been a research professor in the Department of Music and Judaic Studies at Tufts since 2012.
Summit is the author of two books: Singing God’s Words: The Performance of Biblical Chant in Contemporary Judaism (2016), and The Lord’s Song in a Strange Land: Music and Identity in Contemporary Jewish Worship (2000). In 2001, Summit founded the Abayudaya College Scholarship Project, which works with the Jewish Abayudaya community in Uganda and raises and administers funds to send students from the community to colleges and universities. Collaborating with photojournalist Richard Sobol, Summit co-authored Abayudaya: The Jews of Uganda, published in 2002. He also recorded, compiled, and annotated the music album Abayudaya: Music from the Jewish People of Uganda for Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, released in 2003. The album was nominated for a GRAMMY Award for best album in the category of Traditional World Music. In 2003, his album Delicious Peace: Coffee, Music and Interfaith Harmony in Uganda, also for the Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, won “best traditional world music CD” at the Independent Music Awards.