The Nottingham Jewish Student Census
"Whilst being the home of the largest Jewish student community in the UK, Jsoc has been in fact struggling with attendance at many events for a few years. Jewish organisations, such as Chabad and Aish, now play a significant role in providing for and maintaining the needs for Jewish students. In March 2014, the Jewish Society created the first ever Nottingham Jewish Student Census. Led by Benjamin Carr, the aim of the project was to recalibrate the position of Jsoc on campus in order to attract larger numbers of students at its events and place it firmly in the centre of Jewish life on campus. With the guidance of the Union of Jewish Students and University Jewish Chaplaincy, an online survey was launched across social media encouraging students to have their say. This was also an opportunity to build a picture to find out exactly who are Nottingham Jewish Students. What part of the UK are they from? Do they keep shabbat at university? Do they live with other Jews? Issues of identity were not exclusively the remit of the exercise, practical considerations were also presented. How much would students be willing to spend on a Friday Night Dinner, if any? After 151 responses, the results were analysed by the Jewish society and provided direction for the future strategy of Jsoc. This research found that the general attitude towards the J-Soc in Nottingham was underwhelming, with many feeling that the absence of a Hillel House, or central Jewish building, had fragmented the Jewish organisations into competitors that had seen J-Soc take a less influential role. Furthermore, the survey highlighted that 58% of the sample felt that J-Soc could do more to be inclusive of all Jewish students, the highest of any Jewish organisation in Nottingham. It was also found that 66% of students were not willing to pay more than £5 to go to a Friday Night Dinner, a price which has since been addressed by the current J-Soc committee. Ultimately, this research provides rich data to explain how the Jewish student population in Nottingham felt that more can be done in the community to make it more inclusive, progressive and varied in what events are shown."
The Nottingham Jewish Student Census. . 2014: https://archive.jpr.org.uk/object-uk395