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Oregon Hillel staff and student leaders are working together to create an amazing year filled with leadership, fun, and community. Below is a growing list of FAQs and information about how Oregon Hillel will continue to be there for students with support and programming despite the challenges of living in a COVID-19 world. If this email doesn't answer one of your questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to our Executive Director, Andy Gitelson (andy@oregonhillel.org or 541-556-3095). 

While a lot about the Oregon Hillel will change from how we knew it, we remain committed to fostering the most vibrant, diverse, inclusive, and high-impact set of opportunities for Jewish life.

All of the following decisions were made following University of Oregon and Oregon State University guidelines as well as the Oregon State Government guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19. All of these are valid through fall term and will be re-evaluated mid term for winter and as needed based conditions on our campuses, and local communities.

The Oregon Hillel Builidng in Eugene

Will Oregon Hillel be open in the fall?  Following University guidance, The Oregon Hillel building in Eugene will be closed to students for meetings, activities, and hanging out. However, on both campuses Oregon Hillel is still open for all students, we are here to support and engage you virtually and socially distanced in groups of 10 or less this fall. If you need to arrange a visit to the Oregon Hillel building to pick up packages, grab things you left last spring, or anything else, please contact Oregon Hillel’s Executive Director at andy@oregonhillel.org or at 541-556-3095 (cell).

What precautions will be in place to ensure our health and safety for students at Oregon State or University of Oregon?  Oregon Hillel takes the health and safety of students and staff very seriously and will follow the highest standards as established by the University of Oregon, Oregon State University and the State of Oregon. These guidelines include but are not limited to:

  • Masks required at all Hillel organized in-person gatherings or one-on-one meetings

  • 6 foot social distancing enforced

  • Anyone feeling sick, showing symptoms, or with a fever will not be allowed to enter

  • No more than 10 participants (staff & students combined) at any one gathering unless outdoor space permits otherwise

**Guidelines are subject to change as public health recommendations change.

Do I have to wear a mask at Hillel? Yes. As noted above, all individuals must wear a mask indoors as well as outdoors when near others.
  We have some great new Ducks & Beavers face-masks on the way and available to students for FREE! To get a face-mask, please email Maddie (maddie@oregonhillel.org)

Can I visit Oregon Hillel’s building in Eugene if I am not affiliated with the University? For fall term, our building at 1059 Hilyard Street in Eugene will be closed to staff only. This hard decision was made due to the current facilities footprint, layout and lack of HVAC system to help with airflow and is intended to protect the wellbeing of students, community members and staff. We will utilize outdoor space when possible and Hillel can be a pick up point for meals or soup at prearranged times to aid in keeping group sizes under the 10 person threshold.


Min zidell matzo ball soup hotline

If I’m in Eugene or Corvallis, can I still order matzo ball soup? Yes, please continue to order soup as you need and want it. We will be prepping and delivering soup following all COVID-19 guidelines including wearing masks while making and delivering the soup and making contact-less delivery services available. We are gathering information from students who will be in Eugene and Corvallis to help cater to their needs. Please fill out this form to let us know if you will be around. Order here.


oregon hillel events and programming

What will Oregon Hillel’s programmatic offerings look like this year? Oregon Hillel will work creatively and safely to create a robust and wide variety of ways to connect to Jewish life this year with a special focus on helping students connect with each other and to support student mental and physical well being. Our current thinking is that Oregon Hillel will engage students in the following ways:

  • Supporting students at home, on campus, in off-campus singles, and in off-campus pods with personal check-ins, Shabbat dinners, High Holy Day dinners, care packages, soup deliveries, and anything else that makes students feel connected and taken care of.

  • Virtual programs that represent the fullest expression of Jewish life created by students and staff in areas of their interest.

  • Online internships and book clubs.

  • Virtual for credit courses through the Jewish Studies department at the University of Oregon and paid Jewish learning fellowships at Oregon State University.

  • Continuing to engage students to empower and invest in their ideas.

What types of programs are offered through Hillel?  Hillel’s programs are diverse, welcoming, and designed to reach students from all different backgrounds. Key areas of focus for Oregon Hillel include: Shabbat and Holiday celebrations, mental health and wellness, Jewish learning, Social Justice, Israel engagement, leadership, Rosh Chodesh - women’s programming, and mentoring. For a fuller sense of all the ways to connect with Oregon Hillel, check out the student tab on our website.

How do I connect to Hillel programming? How do I know what’s right for me?  With so much on the calendar there is something for everyone! Click here to learn more about what’s right for you. For a more personalized experience, email our UO Director of Engagement & Leadership, Kaya (kaya@oregonhillel.org) or our OSU Director of Jewish Student Life, Susannah (susannah@oregonhillel.org) who will connect you with the right Oregon Hillel professional or student leader to help you find your people and your place. 

Where can I find out about events for first-year and transfer students? Our awesome staff members at both schools have been working endlessly to create easy ways for freshmen to connect with Oregon Hillel and each other. Please contact Kaya  (kaya@oregonhillel.org) for Freshmen Duck events and Susannah (susannah@oregonhillel.org) for Freshmen Beav meetups.

Will there be Birthright Israel this winter? Hillel is currently recruiting for Birthright in the fall knowing there is a chance the trips may be cancelled. All deposits will be refundable. If Birthright International decides to cancel the trip this winter, we are happy to roll over winter registration to our spring trip that will leave in June. Contact Kaya (kaya@oregonhillel.org) for more information. 


Shabbat with Oregon hillel

What options will be available for Shabbat services? Oregon Hillel is committed to create a Shabbat experience for every student on both UO and OSU’s campuses although we will not be together in our building. Here are some examples of what Shabbat might look like: 

  • Any student who wants or needs any ritual item - candles, wine/grape juice, challah, spice box, mezuzah is able to have what they need. To let us know what you need, please email Rabbi Meir at rabbi@oregonhillel.org

  • Pre-made meals in to-go boxes available to all students for free for contactless pick up and delivery at our building. These meals will include options for gluten free, vegetarian, and vegan. 

  • Gift cards to Uber Eats, local restaurants, and other food delivery options to ensure that every student has a Friday-night meal.

  • Shabbat-bags with Challah (or Challah ingredients), grape juice, candle sticks, a Havdallah candle, and prayer sheets available for free for all students.

  • Virtual Zoom-Shabbats and Havdallah led by Rabbi Meir open to all students and community members available on our Facebook page.

Do you have an opinion on what Shabbat should look like? Email Rabbi Meir at rabbi@oregonhillel.org to share your idea!

Can we eat Shabbat dinner at the Oregon Hillel building? Not at this time. Based on both UO and OSU’s COVID-19 guidelines, we will be hosting no meals or large gatherings in the building.


holidays with Oregon hillel


Will there be High Holiday Services on Campus? Oregon Hillel is working to develop a safe High Holiday experience for students in Eugene and Corvallis. Some of these ideas include:

  • Tashlich opportunities outside in both Corvallis and Eugene

  • Outdoor sounding of the Shofar with social distancing enforced (conditions permitting)

  • Erev Rosh Hashanah & Hol Nidre individual meals FREE to UO/OSU students or High Holy Day package with gift card to order a meal

  • Online T'filah (services) in collaboration with Hillel International, studnet leaders, and Rabbi Meir.

Will there be Sukkot on campus to eat in this year? Yes. The Oregon Hillel team is working to finalize a plan to make sure there are Sukkot available for students in ways that meet the highest standards for health and safety. Stay tuned for more information.

health and wellness


This is a lot to handle. Where can I find help navigating the complexities?  We know this coming year will be challenging, and Oregon Hillel is here for students in any way we can be helpful. Oregon Hillel Rabbi and Staff are one click away for emotional support and pastoral care. Additional University of Oregon and Oregon State University mental health resources are available here:

University of Oregon Health Center 
Phone: 541-346-2770

University of Oregon Crisis Support
24 HOURS SUPPORT 541-346-3227

University of Oregon Counseling Center
Monday - Friday:  9 am - 12 pm & 1 pm - 5 pm:  Phone: 541-346-3227
**Any time the Counseling Center is closed a mental health professional is available to provide support and connect you with resources.**

Oregon State University Health Center 
Phone:  541-737-9355

Oregon State University Counseling & Psychological Services
Monday - Friday:  8 am - 5 pm:  Phone:  541-737-2131

Oregon State University 24 Crisis Hotline & Services
24 Hour Support:  1-800-273-8255

Please never hesitate to reach out to any of our staff, we are all here for you during this difficult time