Enjoy this letter from one of our Alumni and a current McGill student.
I hope that everything is going well and that you’ve been enjoying the holidays!
As you may know, I’m now in my first year at McGill University. The school’s Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights group recently proposed a motion to the Student Union General Assembly that was both explicitly pro-Palestine and anti-Israel. Yesterday, with nearly 1,000 people present for the largest Student Union General Assembly in McGill’s history, the motion was shut down.
When I first heard about this motion a couple of weeks ago, I immediately knew that I would attend the General Assembly in order to vote against it. However, I figured that I would stay on the sidelines throughout the debate, letting others take the reins, thinking I was not knowledgeable enough to hold my ground.
But as I continued to read educational materials being distributed to students in anticipation of the vote, I realized that I already knew all of that information. And when I arrived at the General Assembly, I found myself surprisingly vocal, posing legitimate arguments to the “Vote Yes” people sitting around me and becoming an active advocate for the cause. I knew more than I’d thought. Much more.
In this moment, I realized that nearly all of my Israel education has come from Yavneh. Be it through educational peulot or Na’aleh, Yavneh has prepared me to be an effective voice for Israel. It was clear to me that it was Yavneh, more than any other Jewish experience that I’ve had, that has given me a well-rounded perspective on Israeli current events, and has provided me with the proper rhetoric to participate in a discussion.
Knowledge is power, and yesterday, as I stayed at the General Assembly from 3:30-11:30 pm, it was also empowerment––I was able to speak up for what I believe in as a direct result of all that Yavneh has taught me, and that’s something truly special. While I’ve never been unaware of all that I owe to Yavneh, I was overwhelmingly grateful for and proud of my camp yesterday. I’m prepared and ready to stand for Israel, and that’s thanks to Yavneh.
I just wanted to let you know about what was an incredibly profound experience for me. I hope that Yavneh continues to educate the members of its community on Israel and the conflicts surrounding it.