Chabad is something different to every student…
Choosing a university is a major decision for a teenager and his parents.
Majors, school rankings, sports teams, campus size and quality are some of the many components that go into teh decision. Your Jewish heritage and tradition should also be one on those components. The friends and life views made during college years will last for a life time.
Make sure you will be comfortable being who you and your family are today. If we can be helpful please contact us.
Contact us with any questions or to arrange a visit to see campus and campus Jewish life.
Parents, you too should be a part of this major decision. Please browse our site and contact us with any questions.
For information on Chabad centers at other schools (over 160 schools internationally) please click here
- To some we are a Home made Free Shabbat dinner
- To some we are an address to turn to when you need to talk to someone
- To some we are a fun event on campus
- To some we are the place to learn more about their Jewish heritage
- To some we are ” a Jewish home away from home!”
Everyone agrees that Chabad at Maryland is the address for an exciting and meaningful Jewish experience while at College.
Please visit our photo album and other pages on our web site to learn about what Chabad activities take place on campus.
In their words:
Enjoy reading what some of the students over the years have said about Chabad.
“Chabad has done more to affirm my commitment to Judaism than eight years of Hebrew School ever did!”
“Here at the University of Maryland, Chabad really tries its hardest to reach out to all of the Jewish students on campus. The programs that are run have been a lot of fun and at the same time, i feel that they have been very educational. Also, every Friday night, Rabbi Backman and his wife so graciously host anywhere from 100-300 students for dinner. Their generous hospiltality has been what has gotten me through the semester because I know there is always a family here on campus that I can count on 24/7.”
I stepped in the door and Rabbi Backman greeted me with a huge hello and welcome.
From that moment on, I knew Chabad would be a very special place for me.
I am not the only student that feels this way. Every week, Rabbi Backman, his wife and five children open their doors to what has been hundreds of college students at one time, looking for a homemade shabbat meal. They more than graciously welcome us into their homes and lives with open arms and a huge smile.
“Like every other freshman college student, first semester freshman year, i was truly looking for a place where i could fit in. I was looking for friends that i could have a good time with . I became involved in various programs my first semester on campus, but there was still something missing. I did not feel complete. The first shabbat of second semester, I finally made my way down to the Chabad house and was welcomed by a warm and welcoming house that would inevitably become my Jewish home on campus.
The gratitude that I have for the Backman’s and Chabad is enormous.
I appreciate everything that Chabad has offered me including a Jewish home away from home.”
“Its appropiate that Rabbi Backman hands out a calender every year to the Jews around campus. This is because I mark my year by the events that are held by chabbad. When i think of a Jewish holiday, I can remember what fun and meaningful event Rabbi Backman ran. Whether it is the Sukku mobile, or choclate seder, or lighting of the campus menurah, Rabbi brings events to the students of the University of Maryland that not only strengthens, but enriches the Jewish culture on campus. Rabbi Backman both goes out of his away to attract new Jewish students, but has also opened his home to students making it a center for Jewish life. However, what draws many students to chabbad, besides his wife’s cooking and challah which i will say is amazing, is his down to earth personality. The way he is able to talk and connect with a college student. I have enjoyed deep philosophical conversation with the Rabbi at all hours of the day or night. I also have come to know the Rabbi as a friend I can just sit around and joke with for hours. I am amazed by the impact that Chabbad has made not on only to the Jewish community as a whole, but by the way the Rabbi effects students on a one to one basis. I’m convinced the man never sleeps, but is always doing what he enjoys, working with students to enrich their lives. “
“”Between learning one-on-one, shiurim, Shabbat meals and just personal talking time, Rabbi Backman and his family provide a meaningful addition to my religious experience at college. That personal touch makes the Rabbi also a good friend.”
Jason Schoenbrun, Computer Engineering Senior and Chabad house resident
“Chabad at UMD is just an amazing place to be. There are very few other places that make me feel more proud to be a Jew. Often times people associate their judaism with specific day to day actions like prayer, learning atc… However, many people miss out on the idea of am Yisroel chai, that no matter who you are all Jews are together as one. I truly get this feeling every time I step into chabad at UMD. At chabad I look around and see Jews of every level of observance, interacting and having fun with each other. It warms my heart to see the interaction and breaking down of differences. Many people come to chabad, and as a result feel comforrtable with their judaism. It helps give them a sense of pride that they are Jewish. Chabad at UMD, just feels like a place where you can always go, have a good time, and not be afraid to show who you really are. There just seems to be this welcoming, and warm atmosphere, where people are seen as people, and not judged based on what they do or dont do.”
“The University of Maryland Chabad provides my members with incredible opportunities that they have in few other places. Weekly Shabbat dinners at the Chabad house give my chapter members a place to call home while away from home and also provide the kind of community experience that is rarely found in most communities across the country. Rabbi and Mrs. Backman’s exemplary contributions to my fraternity make me proud to be a Jewish student at this university and I implore everyone to be as generous with Chabad as Chabad has been with my fraternity.”
Sam Rank, Former President, Alpha Epsilon Pi
“Chabbad at the University Of Maryland has offered me the warm feeling that so many institutions lack in college. I have always felt welcomed and at home when i enter into the Backman’s house. It is especially comforting on Shabbat, a time that for me has always been about family, to have a place to go to enjoy a home cooked meal, and genuine hospitality. It is truly something that i look forward to all week. Never, in all my experiences both at the University of Maryland or any other schools i have been to, have i experienced a more unique and inviting environment. It is truly something special.”