Jewish students at the University of Minnesota

University of Minnesota

#78, overall score 52.17/100

Fun Fact:

Classes offered at the University of Minnesota have included “Witches, Ghosts, and Evil Clowns,” “Everything I Know About Physics I Learned By Reading Comic Books,” “The Color of Music” and “Nothing.”

Why should Jewish students attend the University of Minnesota? Minnesota ranks high on several important school listings, including value, low student debt and high graduate salaries, and was #15 on Business First’s top public schools. Outside of the classroom, students have hundreds of options for extracurricular activities and groups to get involved with. The U hosts over 600 different students groups, has a strong Greek community and is part of the Big 10, which means there are endless opportunities to check out several top-ranked Division I sports teams. Off-campus, students are just minutes away from downtown Minneapolis and St. Paul, where they have hundreds of opportunities to engage with world-class theater, art, nightlife, major sporting events and so much more. The Twin Cities are home to a strong and vibrant Jewish community as well, and student have easy access to hundreds of Jewish communal events and programs each year both on campus and off. Some of the highlights of Hillel’s programming on campus include: Maroon and Gold Shabbat (500+ guests), Israel Independence Day Block Party, Shabbat Around the U, Alternative Spring Break in Israel, Hanukkah on Ice (Ice Skating), Good Deeds Day, Passover Seders and so much more. — Benjie Kaplan, executive director, Minnesota Hillel

ACADEMICS Score: 10/30

  • Score: 10/30
  • Acceptance rate: 45%
  • Student/faculty ratio: 17:1
  • Jewish Studies major: Yes
  • Israel Studies major: No

FINANCES

  • In-state tuition: $13,790
  • Out-of-state tuition: $22,210
  • Room & board costs: $9,314
  • Average annual scholarship/grant package: $10,320
  • Scholarship for Jewish students: Bentson Family Scholarship

CAMPUS INFORMATION

  • Location: Minneapolis
  • Region: Midwest
  • Public/Private: Public
  • Undergraduate enrollment: 34,071
  • Jewish undergraduate enrollment: 1,500
  • Jewish population share: 5%
  • NCAA Division: I
  • NCAA team: Golden Gophers
  • Ultimate Frisbee teams: Grey Duck, Ninjas

ISRAEL Score: 9.5/20

  • Score: 9.5/20
  • Size of Birthright trip: 41
  • School-approved study abroad program in Israel: Yes
  • Israel-related clubs: Students Supporting Israel, J Street U
  • BDS resolution: Introduced, failed

JEWISH LIFE Score: 22.67/40

  • Score: 22.67/40
  • Hillel: Minnesota Hillel
  • Chabad: Chabad at U of M
  • OU-JLIC: None
  • Meor: None
  • Jewish fraternities: AEPi, ΣAM
  • Jewish sororities: AEPhi
  • Jewish dorm: 17th Avenue Residence Hall
  • Anti-Semitic incidents in 2016: 0
  • Can you get kosher food on the school meal plan?: No
  • Active Hillel clubs: 8
  • Hillel Friday night services: 8
  • Average Shabbat attendance – Hillel: 95
  • Average Shabbat attendance – Chabad: 100
  • Synagogues within 10 miles: 11 (4 Orthodox, 4 Conservative, 3 Reform)
  • Eruv: No
  • Most famous Jewish alumnus: Dave Frishberg
  • Most unique/noteworthy Hillel club: Gophers for Israel is an amazing collaborative effort of pro-Israel students on campus. With students on the University of Minnesota campus holding leadership roles with organizations like Students Supporting Israel, J Street U, JNF, Israel on Campus Coalition, AIPAC, Stand with Us, Hasbara Fellowship, the Jewish United Fund’s Israel Education Center, Birthright and Minnesota Hillel, Gophers for Israel brings all of these leaders together to collaborate, network and build a stronger pro-Israel community with the idea that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
  • Where do Jewish students come from? Mainly the Midwest. There are lots of students from the Jewish suburbs of Chicago and Milwaukee, and from Minnesota, of course.
  • Kosher food details: For students with a car, kosher options are only a short drive from campus, but other than Shabbat and a few other meals here and there (supplied by Hillel or Chabad), there is not a kosher option on campus for daily dining. Both Hillel and Chabad have kosher kitchens.

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