The first Jewish club in South Dakota, B’rith Shalom, formed a year ago by SDSU students, offers a learning environment for those interested in learning more about the Jewish culture.
The club currently has nine members and is hoping to find more. President of the club, Andrew Engelmann, said the past year was “not too shabby” for the club.
Currently, B’rith Shalom is the only Jewish club in the state of South Dakota. Engelmann hopes that with the start of a club at SDSU, more will form at other campuses across the state.
“It would be nice to have a sister chapter to bounce ideas off and build unity… we are a lone wolf,” Engelmann said.
According to Engelmann, the club attended several events together in the past year. They have gone to Sioux Falls for a meal at the synagogue. A synagogue is a Jewish house of prayer. In Sioux Falls they had a Purim party, which is a Jewish holiday from the Book of Esther. The club also hosted a local Passover meal on Main Street in The Union.
“[The club] is always open to anyone who is interested… the Jewish culture club is about learning about it [the Jewish culture]… it is as much for Jews to feel home away from home,” Engelmann said.
B’rith Shalom is a chapter of Hillel, a nationwide Jewish student organization. Engelmann hopes that with more members, the group can do many more events including outreach or fundraising. Many of the members work part time or are working toward their Ph.D. so it is difficult to find a meeting time for B’rith Shalom.