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Fund to support Jewish life on campus is being named in his honor

Hillel Society held a dinner June 4 in honor of Robert Weiner’s 40 years of service to Lafayette and his contributions to Jewish life on campus.

More than 120 students, alumni, faculty, staff, and friends were in attendance at the celebration. Weiner, the Thomas Roy and Lura Forrest Jones Professor of History, serves as the campus’ Jewish chaplain and director of Hillel.

A fund in support of Jewish life on campus will be named in his and his wife Sandy’s honor. The fund will aid in Hillel Society programming, which includes interfaith events, lectures, and performances by cultural groups, among other activities.

“Hillel is very active on campus, and it has been greatly through Bob’s efforts that there is so much going on,” says Hillel faculty adviser Ethan Berkove, associate professor of mathematics. “Bob works very hard to help provide students with a sense of Jewish community on campus.”

Weiner has been teaching and involved with Hillel at Lafayette since 1969. He has received numerous awards from the College including the Christian R. and Mary F. Lindback Foundation Award for excellence in teaching and outstanding contributions to campus life in 1975, the Marquis Distinguished Teaching Award for distinctive and extraordinary teaching in 1997, a Student Government Superior Teaching Award in 1999, the Daniel F. Golden Faculty Service Award in 2002, and the James E. Lennertz Prize for exceptional teaching and mentoring in 2009.

His excellence also has been recognized by The Teaching Company, which videotaped 36 of Weiner’s lectures in August 2004 and made them available in a series titled “The Long 19th Century: A History of Europe, 1789-1917.” Weiner’s main research for the last 15 years has focused on the Jewish community of Dijon, France. He has conducted many interviews with residents of the region for a book looking at French-Jewish history. He has included dozens of students in the project as research assistants.

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