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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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Week-long Jewish holiday ends Sunday

Sukkot
Photo by By Morgan Engel
Sukkot

The Jewish community began celebrating the holiday Sukkot Sunday.

Sukkot, often considered Judaism’s most joyous celebration of the year, commemorates the time period when the Jewish people wandered the desert after their exodus from Egypt and lived in small portable homes, waiting to enter the promised land.  

Rabbi Matt Rosenberg, head rabbi at the Hillel at Texas A&M, said during the seven days of Sukkot, Sukkahs — small shack-like buildings — serve as temporary homes for Jewish participants. For the duration of the holiday, the Hillel will house a Sukkot. There is also a Sukkot in Rudder Plaza put up by the Rohr Chabad Jewish Student Center.

Celeste Swanson, business sophomore and president of the Student Board at the Hillel, said she is glad Sukkot can be celebrated at A&M. Swanson said Texas A&M stands out among other universities because of the welcoming atmosphere of the student body to everyone’s cultures.

“I was scared coming to Texas A&M,” Swanson said. “I was not sure what my Jewish identity would be here. I have met no anti-Semitism. All I have met was interest, which is amazing, and Texas A&M is very unique because of that.”

Rosenberg said he hopes students see Sukkahs and are not afraid to ask questions about the Jewish faith. Rosenberg said he would love to see the Jewish community at Texas A&M expand.

“One of the reasons I took this job was for the challenge to grow this Jewish community,” Rosenberg said. “We have started Jewish college fairs in Houston, Dallas, Fort Worth and initiated the Aggie Open House. Texas A&M is less than 1 percent Jewish while most is 8 to 12 percent. I am trying to change that.”

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