Student to Student
A program of the Newmark Institute.
Bigotry is often the result of a lack of knowledge and familiarity. As a response, JCRC developed Student to Student (STS), a program that reduces stereotypes and prejudice in the students it reaches. Initially funded in 1992 by a planning grant of the Jewish Federation, Student to Student has reached thousands of students in area schools that lack a Jewish presence. Young people who have had this experience can now put a “human face” to Judaism—the best antidote to bigotry and intolerance.
STS participants have made presentations throughout the St. Louis region in public schools for world history, speech, journalism, and literature classes; and in faith schools, in conjunction with world religion and Hebrew Scriptures classes.
Today, Student to Student has grown into a national non-profit. You can learn more here.
Impart Information, Foster Connection, Counter Stereotypes
Each presentation is given by a group of three or four students, members of the Reform, Conservative, and Orthodox branches of Judaism. This presentation is an interactive, informal discussion by students for students, not “just another lecture".
Presenters discuss a range of topics, such as:
- A description of the branches of Judaism
- The Jewish life cycle from birth to Bar/Bat Mitzvah to marriage to death
- The Sabbath
- Anti-Semitism and the Holocaust
- The Hebrew language
- Jewish dietary practices
- The Jewish calendar, including holidays
Instead of just describing a shofar (ram’s horn), an actual shofar may be passed around and, when possible, blown by one of the presenters; instead of just describing challah, the Sabbath bread may be passed around for sampling!