The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Warrior Weekend draws Jewish ROTC cadets around US

Photo by Photo by Maddie Brennan

Former Deputy Surgeon General Maj. Gen. David Rubenstein spoke at Jewish Warrior Weekend.

Military men and women of the Jewish community across the country came together this weekend for Jewish Warrior Weekend, an event put on by the Texas A&M Hillel to encourage and equip Jewish Americans going into the military by surrounding them with a like-minded community.
As the first of its kind in Aggieland, Jewish Warrior Weekend invited Jewish ROTC and military cadets from various
institutions, including Virginia Military Institute, the Air Force Academy, Amherst College, Colorado State and Princeton. The event took place April 14 to 16 at the Texas A&M Hillel Center and throughout the university’s campus. Various events included celebrating Shabbat and Passover and lectures from various Jewish military leaders, such as the first female rabbi of the Air Force, Chaplain Maj. Sarah D. Schechter and Former Deputy Surgeon Gen. Maj. Gen. David Rubenstein of the U.S. Army.
Dan Rosenfield, communication senior, joined with co-founder, senior Wyatt Kamin, to bring the original Jewish Warrior Weekend idea from West Point down to Texas A&M. Through the event they hoped to connect Jewish cadets with sponsors such as the Jewish War Veterans of America and the Jewish Welfare Board, and show the cadets they have resources supporting them.
“Another reason we had this weekend is to show other Jewish military leaders that they’re not walking it alone,” Rosenfield said. “We each have a small, Jewish community where we are. But coming together shows that our military Jewish American community is stronger when connected.”
Military students from across the country discussed the importance of weekends where the Jewish community grows more unified, and their heart behind their faith and patriotism. Eric Umans, from Colorado State University, explained how exciting it was to meet and instantly connect with people going through the same experiences, despite their different settings.
“It gives you a lot of different perspectives since we come from different cadet environments,” Umans said. “There’s not a lot of Jewish men and women in the military, so it can be lonely. But we’re proud of our faith, and we’re proud to be serving.”
Former member of the Fightin’ Texas Aggie band, Class of 2000 and adviser to the students leading Jewish Warrior Weekend, Lt. Marc Wolf said he sees great importance in sharing the military traditions and history of Texas A&M with the outside world by fostering new relationships and moving experiences for Jews entering positions of leadership.
“You’re talking about people who, over the course of their military career, are going to be leading thousands of people,” Wolf said. “And they can lead because they are not only warriors, but also diplomats and problem solvers. They lead through the lens of their faith, and every type of decision they make will be guided by that.”
Furthermore, Wolf said weekends like this provide Jewish military students with a sense of identity and personhood during a time when many move away from their Jewish community base at home. Through these powerful, community centered events, their network of support only expands, Wolf said.
“Empowering Jewish college students and helping them find their voice really makes a difference to people who come after them,” Wolf said. “And TAMU is facilitating that. This will just be the beginning. The word will get out. We’re taking the resources we have, Texas A&M, Corps of Cadets, Hillel, and leveraging them to create something that’s not been done before.”

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