FORT COLLINS — In honor of Women’s History Month, the Colorado State University chapter of Hillel is co-hosting women leaders from across the country who are effecting change in their communities, and helping make life for students on campus more inclusive and meaningful.
Patti Ray, the first woman director of Hillel and now Hillel Director Emerita of Loyola University Chicago, will present a keynote address at 7 p.m. March 30, in the Lory Student Center Ballroom. Ray will discuss the dramatic changes over the past 50 years in the roles of Jewish women in their ritual lives and their communities.
Not only did Ray become the first Hillel director who was not a male Rabbi 40 years ago at the University of Illinois–Chicago Circle, but she also became the first founder of a Hillel chapter at a Catholic University, Loyola University Chicago in 1987. It was the first non-Catholic organization on campus.
“I am still inspired every day by the students I work with,” says Ray, who continues to serve as a resource for Loyola academic departments to develop new initiatives. “You often do not realize that you break new ground until you look back and reflect upon what you did.”
Hillel is helping present a number of additional events throughout Women’s History Month:
- 6:30-8:30 p.m. March 25 at the CSU Hillel House, 720 W. Laurel St. Expect an exciting evening with Rabbi Shoshana Leis from Congregation Har Shalom, Fort Collins’ only woman Rabbi. She will be leading services, followed by a kosher Shabbat meal. This is a great opportunity to learn about more interfaith initiatives in Fort Collins and women in Jewish leadership.
9 a.m.-5 p.m. March 26 in the Lory Student Center will include Sheila Katz, Hillel International’s Vice President of Social Entrepreneurship. She will speak about her experiences with Title IX and how gender has affected her personally. Katz also helps lead a group that works to support hundreds of sexual assault survivors on campuses around the country.
All events are free and open to the public through funding and speakers provided by the Associated Students of Colorado State University, Congregation Har Shalom, Hillel, Women and Gender Advocacy Center, and The Women & Gender Collaborative.