Penn President Liz Magill opened applications for a new Student Advisory Group on the Jewish student experience.
The advisory group will assemble the perspectives of Jewish students at Penn to discuss “issues of concern,” according to an email to the Penn community on Nov. 16. Magill invited nominations for up to 10 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students to serve on the advisory group.
Student representatives will commit to the group for a one-year term, beginning December 2023. They will engage in quarterly dialogues with Magill and Provost John Jackson Jr. about their campus experience and hold “empathetic and solutions-focused conversations,” according to the email.
The self-nomination form, which is due Nov. 21, asks applicants to briefly explain their interest in serving on the advisory group and list their involvement in other campus organizations. The group will be assembled before Thanksgiving Break and have its first meeting this semester, according to Penn’s webpage on the action plan.
The advisory group is part of the campus-wide action plan to combat antisemitism announced earlier this month, which commits to improving safety and security, engagement, and education. The new initiative fits into the “engagement” category by allowing University administrators to hear directly from Jewish students about their experience at Penn.
Another part of the plan to engage with the Penn community is the University’s antisemitism task force. Magill recently named 20 community members who are joining the task force, which is chaired by Mark Wolff, the Morton Amsterdam Dean of the School of Dental Medicine. The group will include faculty representatives from multiple Penn schools, two student representatives, and six staff, alumni, and Trustee representatives.
The United States Department of Education recently launched an investigation into Penn and six other schools over alleged instances of antisemitism and Islamophobia. A University spokesperson told The Daily Pennsylvanian that Penn looked forward to cooperating with the investigation.
"The University is taking clear and comprehensive action to prevent, address, and respond to antisemitism, with an action plan anchored in the National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism," the spokesperson wrote in a statement. "President Magill has made clear antisemitism is vile and pernicious and has no place at Penn; the University will continue to vigilantly combat antisemitism and all forms of hate.”