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Your Jewish Home Away From Home

Hillel Ottawa’s mission is to enrich the lives of the 1,500 Jewish students in our nations capital so that they may enrich the Jewish people and the world. Hillel Ottawa’s student leaders, staff, and lay leaders are dedicated to creating a pluralistic, welcoming, and inclusive environment for Jewish students, where they are encouraged to grow intellectually, spiritually, and socially. Hillel Ottawa helps students find a balance between being distinctively Jewish and universally human by encouraging them to pursue tzedek (social justice), tikkun olam (repairing the world), and Jewish learning, and to support Israel and global Jewish peoplehood. Hillel Ottawa is committed to excellence, innovation, accountability, and results.



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Upcoming Events

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Your Personal Jewish Journey

We Are But One Stop Along The Road On Your Personal Jewish Journey


Here Are Some Things You May Love At Hillel Ottawa

Meet The Staff

Meet Our Fantastic Hillel Ottawa Professionals

Dovi Chein

Director of Jewish Campus Life

Leora Morris

Jewish Student Life Coordinator


The following team of local lay leadership works tirelessly to ensure the continuation of Hillel Ottawa and the impact we have on campus. Without their support Hillel Ottawa would not be where it is today.

  • Jonathan Ben-Choreen Friedman [Chair]
  • Bill Izso
  • Betina Kuzmarov
  • Dorothy Stern

  • Raphael Szajnfarber
  • Geremy Miller


Here’s What People Are Saying About Hillel Ottawa


51 years ago, the Ottawa Jewish community, supported by the National Hillel Organization, created Ottawa Hillel. Before its official inception, there were smaller unorganized, unfunded Jewish campus groups serving Ottawa U and Carleton. These groups merged in 1957 under the official umbrella of Hillel to bring Jewish students together and support social, political, cultural and religious programs on campus.

Rabbi Burstein, the first Hillel director wrote in 1960: Those of us who worked toward this formalization knew what we wanted from Hillel, which, essentially, is the introducing of modern college youth to 4,000 years of Jewish tradition.

In 1974 Hillel became a part of the Jewish Students Union. This name change accompanied the inclusion of different Zionist and Jewish groups on both University campuses. The new campus club like many other Jewish clubs across North America took to the plight of Soviet Jewry. JSU arranged for speakers, had tables, organized national protests on parliament hill, and raised thousands of dollars.

In the past five years, JSA-Hillel has seen phenomenal growth and changes designed to create an even more vibrant Jewish community on campus. There has been a 5 fold growth in membership, the creation of a Hillel presence at Algonquin College and even purchased a Hillel house. This was a huge step forward as it solidified Hillel’s presence on campus.

For 51 years Hillel has been the centre for Jewish life on campus and today more than ever it the most vibrant, active clubs on all three campuses in Ottawa.

(Originally written in 2008)