by George J Elbaum
The University of San Francisco (USF) is a Jesuit Catholic university located in the middle of San Francisco. Founded in 1855, USF was the city’s first university, and it is the third oldest institution for higher learning in California. Its student body numbers approximately 10,000, with 63% undergraduates and 37% postgraduates, and its faculty numbers approximately 1,000, of which 41% are full-time and 59% are part-time, or adjunct. Religious and spiritual organizations on campus include the Muslim Student Union, the USF chapter of InterVarsity Christian Fellowship and the USF Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life.
As it was last year, my talk at USF was again to an undergraduate class entitled Jews, Judaisms, and Jewish Identities, which is a part of the Swig Program in Jewish Studies and Social Justice. It was organized by its teacher, Oren Kroll-Zeldin, Adjunct Faculty in the Department of Theology and Director of the Beyond Bridges: Israel-Palestine, and was arranged by Nina Grotch of the Jewish Family and Childrens’ Services.