Scottish Council of Jewish Communites
Scottish Council of Jewish Communities
 
Scottish Council of Jewish Communities

Being a Jewish Student in Scotland
 
April 2012
Being Jewish in Scotland with Aberdeen students

Groups of students from Aberdeen and Glasgow, spent time discussing their experiences of Being Jewish in Scotland with SCoJeC's project worker, Fiona Frank. Many students who had come from larger communities in England or elsewhere, felt that they had to be more proactive in Scotland "to make things happen here". They all wanted to strengthen links with the local Jewish communities, but often found it difficult to participate in communal activities, particularly in Glasgow where the university is at the opposite side of town from where most of the community live. Following discussions with members of one of the local synagogues, SCoJeC has been able to facilitate links with students living in the city centre, which will enable the students to benefit from the synagogue's facilities.

Students studying in towns without any settled Jewish community also faced challenges, but they often relished the opportunity to tell people about Judaism. "I go to university in Stirling where I’m the only Jewish student" said one, "I’m proud that I’m the only one. I love taking friends to Friday night dinner, showing them a different side of me."

Unfortunately, not all experiences were so positive. "Last year I was staying in halls" said one student. "We weren't allowed candles, but for Chanukah I had cut pictures of flames out and put them on a paper chanukiah on the outside of my door. When I came back to Uni after the holidays, I found that the stems of the chanukiah had been taken down and torn up and replaced in the shape of a swastika."

 

 

 

   
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