university campus (illustrative)
university campus (illustrative) iStock

An upcoming summit will bring together college and university leaders from across the United States for a two-day discussion on the unprecedented increase in anti-Semitic activity and the marginalization of Jewish students on campus.

The February “University Presidents Summit,” produced by Hillel International and American Jewish Committee (AJC) in collaboration with the American Council on Education (ACE), will be hosted by New York University (NYU).

“University presidents have a critical role to play in improving the campus climate for Jewish students and ensuring all students can live and study in environments free of hate and intolerance,” said Adam Lehman, CEO of Hillel International. “This summit will give university administrators the tools and resources they need to speak out against anti-Semitism and take specific steps to make our campuses safer.”

David Harris, CEO of American Jewish Committee, said that “Jewish students have been among the most visible targets of Jew-hatred in its various forms.”

“University leaders are our most important allies in confronting anti-Semitism on campus,” Harris said. “We look forward to working even more closely with them to ensure Jewish students, like students of all other backgrounds and faiths, are able to pursue education free of fear or intimidation.”

The summit will bring together leaders of colleges and universities across the United States to explore meaningful ways in which institutions can respond to anti-Semitism within the context of fulfilling their “overarching diversity, equity, and inclusion mission to combat all forms of racism, bigotry, discrimination, and harassment on campus” – while respecting principles of academic freedom and free speech.

Taking place February 7-8 in New York City, the even will be hosted by NYU President Andrew Hamilton.

It will include a keynote dinner, presentations from university and Jewish community leaders, and confidential breakout sessions for university administrators to explore key issues in depth with one another. The summit will also offer campus leaders a unique opportunity to share best practices, develop institution specific approaches, and share resources that enable action.

“We are excited to collaborate with Hillel and AJC to address this essential and timely issue for college and university leaders,” said ACE President Ted Mitchell. “The conversations we engage in at this summit will help institutions across the country craft strategies to improve the campus climate for Jewish students and other community members.”