Just as with a rearview mirror, Purim and Passover this year are closer than they appear. And if you are a student who has class on these days – either on Wednesday evening or Thursday during the day, for example – then it isn’t too late to get an accommodation and connect with the festivities at either Chabad on campus or Hillel Ottawa. This is doubly true if it is your first time. It is never too late to do “Jewish,” and there is no better time to start than now. Let me count the ways.
First, know that it is your right, especially on campus. At the bottom of most syllabi, in almost every publicly-funded university in Canada and the United States, there is a blurb that enshrines religious freedom. Sometimes it is stated vigorously, other times it is barely a sentence, and it is jammed between the far larger sections on plagiarism and the writing services centre. But, most of the time, it still sings the same tune: that the university believes in cultural or religious diversity, and within the first two, three, four weeks, or as soon as possible, the student ought to communicate with the professor in case accommodation for religious observances is needed. [Read more…]