Director of Jewish Life Betsy Polk elected to Hillel International’s Director’s Cabinet

Polk will serve a two-year term on the body designed to advocate for the interests of local Hillel organizations and field professionals

Betsy Polk, Elon’s director of Jewish life, has been elected to Hillel International’s prestigious Director’s Cabinet for a two-year term.

The Hillel Director’s Cabinet is a representative body elected by Hillel directors across North America to advocate for the interests of local Hillel organizations and field professionals. The Cabinet partners with Hillel’s Schusterman International Center and the Hillel International Board of Directors to set direction and strategy for the Hillel movement.

“Betsy has been a fantastic Director of Jewish Life at Elon and so it is no surprise that she was tapped for the director’s cabinet for Hillel International,” said Vice President for Student Life Jon Dooley.

Polk leads the Jewish Life team at Elon University during a time of robust growth for the organization. The Jewish undergraduate population at the university has grown to 13 percent, and Elon Hillel serves the 800 Jewish students on campus through innovative and engaging programming designed to make connections to Jewish identity and build community among Jewish students.

“Betsy’s vision, leadership and innovation is truly inspirational,” shared Debi Gellman P’22, co-chair of Elon’s Jewish Life Advisory Council. “Hillel has prospered and grown through her compassion and dedication to a strong and welcoming Jewish culture at Elon. The students have benefitted from her warmth, genuine concern and ability to nurture their talents.”

Despite the challenges presented by the coronavirus pandemic, in the fall of 2020 Elon Hillel offered well-attended and safe High Holiday programming, hosted a variety of small and socially-distances events to welcome new students to campus, and the Sklut Hillel Center has served as an inclusive home base for Jewish students on campus.

“I’m looking forward to serving on Hillel Directors Cabinet,” said Polk. “It is an honor to represent Elon Hillel and to work closely with Hillels on campuses throughout North America as a sounding board and an advocate.”

Elon Hillel is affiliated with Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life (known as Hillel International), the largest Jewish campus organization in the world, working with thousands of college students globally, and on 550 campuses throughout the United States. Their annual College Guide is a resource for students and families embarking on their college search, and seeking to learn about the opportunities for an exciting and enriching Jewish life on campus.