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The JS Wishlist

The KU Jewish Studies Program wishlist

Endowments can be created with an initial gift of $5000. Whatever financial goal is wanted, it is usually the result of an endowment with 4% annual interest (for instance, if $10,000 a year is wanted for study-abroad scholarships, an endowment of $250,000 will be needed to produce this. If a professorship is wanted at $60,000/year [KU would pick up the remaining tab], an endowment of $1.5 million would be needed to produce this).

1. An endowed, named department (on the order of $5m, providing $200k/year) to name the program/department, provide new professorships and student scholarships, and nudge the University to provide us more space).

2. Our own space: 6 offices, library, and student lounge. At the moment, we are just 4 offices in a row on 4th floor Wescoe; we have no student area or library and no room to grow (endowment of $2m-$3m minimum).

3. Faculty ($40,000-$75,000; endowment of $1m-$1.75m):

  • Israeli professor: we need an endowment to bring over an Israeli professor for 1 year (with 1 year renewable) to teach courses in modern Israel (conflict, citizenship, culture & society).
  • 2nd Hebrew instructor, lecturer position.
  • Professor of Jewish history (at present, we have a lecturer for 2 courses a year).
  • Professor of Jewish literature and culture in America (to replace Cheryl Lester who's retiring).
  • Professor of Jewish music, a shared position with the Music School: sacred music, Broadway, movie music.
  • Professor of Jewish art, a shared position with the History of Art Department.

4. Scholarships for study abroad, $10,000 year (endowment of $250,000). We are grateful to Harvey Bodker for his annual gift of study abroad scholarships. It would be good to get this gift endowed.

5. Slush money to develop/offer 1 more new course a year ($5000, endowment of $125,000). We already have the Stein Fund which yieleds $5000/year for one-time lecturers, visiting faculty, or an extra course/year. It'd be great to have an extra $5000 a year for this.

6. Event money for a speakers series (2 speakers a year) or 1 symposium a year ($10,000, endowment of $250,000).

7. Research, travel & publication fellowships to enhance faculty research: $2500-$5000 a year (endowment of $62,500-$125,000).


Welcome Professor Zeedan!
The Jewish Studies Program is delighted to welcome Prof. Rami Zeedan as a new faculty member! Prof. Zeedan holds a Ph.D. in Israeli Studies from the University of Haifa in Israel. His research interests include the history of modern Israel, Israeli politics, Middle-Eastern politics, ethnic politics, urban affairs and local governments, and public opinion. This Fall he is teaching courses on Israeli politics and government, and on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. 
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