The opportunity for students and the greater New Orleans community to engage in dialogue and discourse with Tulane’s JWST faculty is a key strength of the department. In that regard, the recruitment and retention of exceptional faculty is our top priority, and can be made possible by the establishment of several endowed chairs and professorships. Endowed chairs are awarded to internationally recognized scholars. These professors conduct ground-breaking research, lead innovative initiatives, and mentor students and other faculty. Without these respected positions, Tulane may miss the opportunity to compete with our rival schools for the most talented. And at the world-class level on which Tulane University competes for faculty, these positions are no longer a perk — they are an expectation.
We also seek to increase our endowment to produce world class events and scholarship. Our public events draw wide audiences from across the university and the city, providing an opportunity for students and community members to interact with top scholars from across the globe. The ability to bring the world’s leading scholars to our campus will allow us to convene lectures, seminars, films, exhibits, and academic conferences that reimagine our approaches to the study of Jewish life and culture. It will also ensure that our faculty have the resources to conduct research in archives across the globe—an essential element in publishing the cutting-edge books and articles for which Tulane’s Jewish Studies faculty are known. A strong endowment will allow our academic reputation to reverberate around the city and the world.