Brown University

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#8, overall score 76.33/100

Fun Fact:

The night before final exams begin, students strip naked and deliver doughnuts to people studying in the library in order to alleviate stress.

Why should Jewish students attend Brown? If you want to expand your horizons and engage yourself as both a thinker and a doer, Brown is the place for you. At Brown, Jewish students come together to ask questions, celebrate their Judaism in community, and emerge as Jews ready to engage the world and all its complexities. Brown RISD Hillel is at the forefront of shaping some of the most important features of vibrant and sustainable Jewish community in America: Through learning, relationships, prayer and service, we are cultivating a robust Judaism that is both deep and boldly pluralistic. From the Main Green’s classrooms to Hillel’s Social Hall, Jewish students at Brown from all backgrounds and walks of life come together and learn from one another. Mirroring the ethos created by Brown’s Open Curriculum, Brown RISD Hillel places students in the driver’s seat of their Jewish experience, empowering students to create an evolving set of initiatives of meaning to them and their peers. Students graduate from Brown with a profound sense of how their Judaism can relate to the real world and with a network of Jewish mentors, friends and supporters. — Marshall Einhorn, executive director, Brown RISD Hillel

ACADEMICS Score: 30/30

  • Score: 30/30
  • Acceptance rate: 9%
  • Student/faculty ratio: 7:1
  • Jewish Studies major: Yes
  • Israel Studies major: No


  • Tuition: $51,367
  • Room & board costs: $13,200
  • Average annual scholarship/grant package: $44,401


  • Location: Providence, R.I.
  • Region: New England
  • Public/Private: Private
  • Undergraduate enrollment: 6,652
  • Jewish undergraduate enrollment: 1,000
  • Jewish population share: 15%
  • Student origin: 5% in-state / 95% out-of-state
  • NCAA Division: I
  • NCAA team: Bears
  • Ultimate Frisbee teams: Brownian Motion, Disco Inferno

ISRAEL Score: 14.67/20

JEWISH LIFE Score: 28.33/40

  • Score: 28.33/40
  • Hillel: Brown RISD Hillel
  • Chabad: Rohr Chabad House
  • OU-JLIC: No
  • Meor: Yes
  • Jewish fraternities: Beta Rho Pi
  • Jewish sororities: None
  • Anti-Semitic incidents in 2016: 4
  • Can you get kosher food on the school meal plan? Yes
  • Active Hillel clubs: 30
  • Hillel Friday night services: 2
  • Average Shabbat attendance – Hillel: 125
  • Synagogues within 10 miles: 8 (4 Orthodox, 1 Conservative, 3 Reform)
  • Eruv: Yes
  • Most famous Jewish alumnus: Janet Yellen
  • Most unique/noteworthy Hillel club: Jews of Mixed Identity is a vital organization for students from multifaith, multiracial, Mizrahi or “bi-tribal” (as in both Ashkenazi and Mizrahi) Jewish backgrounds. It gives them space to reflect upon what their “mixed-ness” is about. JMI affords a context for discussion and other programming through which students can explore their racial, cultural, political, ethnic, religious gender identities and more alongside their identities as Jews.
  • Where do Jewish students come from? All over the world.
  • Kosher food details: Brown University’s Dining Services offers a kosher meal plan that students sign up for at the start of the semester, with meals provided in the Sharpe Refectory (“Ratty”) during lunch and dinner (on Shabbat and holidays, the kosher meal plan is served out of the Hillel building). Participating students can also eat from the regular Ratty menu and will enjoy all the benefits of the regular meal plan, including credit, guest meals and FlexPlus points.

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