Thursday, May 24th, 2012...9:03 am

Tufts Hillel Students – Bios and Hellos

We leave in less than a week! Get to know us before we blog from the Morocco.

Jon Arditti is a rising Junior from Stamford, CT, and he’s majoring in Cognitive and Brain Sciences. He is most excited to interact with people from a culture so different from his own, and for the meals that end with a cup of green tea and mint!



Becky Allen: I am a rising junior majoring in Religion with a focus on conflict resolution. I hope to pursue a career working towards the goals of inclusive security and building a just and sustainable peace in the Middle East. I was born and raised in Roslyn, New York, about 30 minutes from the city. However, I love traveling and I am super excited to visit Morocco! I have had a bit of an obsession with Morocco for quite some time now as it combines much about which I am passionate: French language and culture, Middle Eastern culture, and even Jewish culture! I am most looking forward to exploring the way in which these cultures interact while engaging in hands-on service work.

Rachel Clarke is a rising sophomore at Tufts University.  Originally from Swarthmore, Pennsylvania, a small town outside of Philadelphia, she is thinking about majoring in political science and minoring in communications and media studies, although she has not declared yet. Rachel cannot wait to go to Morocco and is most excited to experience the culture and meet new people.

Jordan Dashow is a rising Junior, double majoring in International Relations (with a concentration in the Middle East) and Political Science. Even though he is from the best state in the USA, New York (specifically Long Island, New York), Jordan is excited to get off the East Coast and travel to Morocco at the beginning of this summer. He can’t wait to learn about the Jewish communities in Morocco, engage in meaningful service, and get to know his fellow Tufts students even better! In addition, Jordan is looking forward to spending 10 days with Alyza Weinberg and is hoping to perfect his “Alyza face” by the end of the trip.

Sara Eisemann is from Manchester, VT. She graduated on May 20 with the Class of 2012 and now has a B.A. in international relations! With this degree, it is unsurprising that she is most excited to travel to a new country and experience its culture, forming connections with the people there and learning about Moroccan Jewry firsthand. She is also excited to get to know her fellow trip participants better during the trip!


Hi, my name is Mollie Elkin and I am from the sunny Daytona Beach, FL. I am a rising junior at Tufts studying Child Development. I am excited for the opportunity to visit Morocco! I cannot wait to spend Shabbat with the Marrakesh Jewish community, volunteer in two schools (especially helping to teach a computer class to Moroccan students), and just getting time to explore!

Hi, I’m Emma Hershey and I’m a sophomore from Sherborn, MA.  I’m a math and computer science double major with a minor in music.  I can’t wait to work with kids at the Neve Shalom Ozar HaTorah School in Casablanca and experience Shabbat in Morocco!


Leah Lazer: I’m a sophomore from New Milford, CT majoring in Food System Studies. I am most excited to learn about how the lives and religious practices of Jews in Morocco have been influenced by Arab culture, and to make personal connections with members of the Jewish community there.


I am Andrew Lutz, a rising senior from Baltimore, MD. What I’m most excited for: I’m very excited to meet new people and learn from their culture. I’m very interested to see how Judaism fits into Moroccan culture and vice versa. And most of all, I’m looking forward to making lasting connections with the communities we visit!

Hi! My name is Julie Margolies and I’m a rising sophomore at Tufts.  I’m from Carlisle, MA and I’ve lived there all my life.  Although I haven’t declared a major, I’m planning on majoring in sociology and potentially double majoring in child development. In terms of the trip that we will be taking to Morocco, I think I’m most excited about meeting the kids at the schools we’re visiting. I’m really interested in education and I also just love talking to and interacting with people; the fact that these kids are close to our age will just make the experience more interesting and relatable. Overall, though, I really just can’t wait to take off and learn about the Jewish communities in Morocco in a way that will really let us experience their culture firsthand.

Rose Pollard is from State College, Pennsylvania. She is a rising junior majoring in International Relations and minoring in Music. She cannot wait to travel to Morocco and connect with people! She is psyched to get to experiences the communities there and learn about people’s lives, their pasts, their hopes, their families, their friends, and interests.

Hi everyone, my name is Ben Preis, and I just finished my freshman year! I’m from Pittsburgh, but since having started Tufts I love my new home. I’m planning on double majoring in Physics as well as Peace and Justice Studies. I’m extremely excited for this entire trip, but I especially look forward to meeting both Jewish and non-Jewish Moroccans. When traveling, I love interacting with the people who live there, and I hope to use this opportunity to the fullest extent.

Laurie Rabin is a junior majoring in Engineering Psychology and Child Development. She came to Tufts from Oceanside, New York. She is really excited about getting to see how the schools in Morocco are using computers in their classrooms and learning more about the country and the people we meet!

Shayna Schor hails from Millburn, NJ.  A rising junior majoring in Political Science, Shayna also serves as Co-President of LCS and staff writer for The Observer and TuftScope.  Besides turning 20 during the trip, Shayna is very excited to spend time with children at the local schools.

Elana Shapiro (’15) is an intended International Relations and Community Health double major from New York City. Elana is most excited about meeting the Moroccan people and learning more about their culture. She is also looking forward to working with children, trying Moroccan cuisine, and exploring Rabat.

Anna Simonovsky is a rising sophomore from New York City who has absolutely no idea what she wants to study and hopes she will figure it out by next year. She cannot wait for the trip to see Judaism practiced in a completely different manner.

Aliza Small is a rising sophomore from Deerfield, IL. Her major is most definitely undecided, though English and History are both in the running. She is minoring in Film. Aliza is excited to see the architecture of the major Moroccan cities and engage with Jewish residents in rural areas, learning about their daily lives.
Hi, I’m Seth Teleky, soon to be a Senior (first time i’ve said that, sounds so scary) My major is Political Science and History. I’m from Bayside, New York. What I’m most excited for: Getting to meet the locals and experience what life is like for them!



I am Sam Tye, and I am a junior from Newton, Mass. I am majoring in Community Health and Psychology. I am most excited to go on this trip because after meeting Jews from all over the country when arriving at Tufts, I would love to meet Jews from other places in the world. I can’t wait to meet and spend time with the Jewish community in Morocco.

Alyza Weinberg, Program Associate, is responsible for supervising our student board and student executives. Alyza also plays a critical role in Hillel’s Alternative Spring Breaks. Alyza was born and raised in Canada and graduated from the University of King’s College in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Before moving to Boston, Alyza participated in AVODAH: The Jewish Service Corps and worked at a public charter high school in inner-city Washington, DC.

Lia Weintraub is a rising junior at Tufts, majoring in International Relations and Spanish.  She is from West Hartford, Connecticut.  She is most excited to come on this trip to learn about Jewish traditions in different parts of the world, experience a new place and culture, and have an amazing time with the Tufts group!

Tufts Hillel - Morocco - Summer 2012

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