River Campus Hillel Student Leaders


Harrah Newman, President

Class of 2018

Major: Biomedical Engineering

Hometown: Morganville, NJ

From Harrah: I love Friday nights at Hillel because it's a great way to relax after a busy week with my Hillel family. I also really enjoy events involving food and traditional Jewish cooking. I love being on the Hillel board as it gives me the opportunity to help organize events to enhance our Jewish community of campus. 


Ali Thaler, Programming Chair

Class of 2018

Major: Mechanical Engineering

Hometown: Larchmont, NY

From Ali: At the University of Rochester, Hillel is a place where Jews of all backgrounds are not only accepted but appreciated. When I first came to Rochester, I did not seek out Jewish life on campus. Then I went to a Shabbat dinner and met the people at Hillel and found they were genuine and kind and provided a community that made me feel at home. I joined the board to enrich the Jewish Community on campus and to ensure that Hillel remains a home aways from home for all. 


Talia Salenger, Israel Chair

Class of 2020

Major: Brian and Cognitive Science and Biology

Hometown: Albany, NY

From Talia: When I was 18, I moved to Israel and lived there for three years while serving in the IDF. After my service ended, I worked and traveled for about a year, including an amazing four-month trip to Asia! I love Israel and always am happy to talk about my experience there, as well as anything else! 


Nipu Berger, Social Programming Chiar

Class of 2019

Major: Mechanical Engineering

Hometown: New York, NY

From Nipu: Shabbat dinner is pretty much the highlight of my week. I love the community and learning more and more about Jewish culture at every dinner. I also enjoy the fact that we get fed free food that also tastes really good, because lets be honest, who doesn't like free food. In addition to Shabbat dinner, I love going to Hillel's events because they are always creative and fun and a great way to meet other Jewish students on campus. 


Michael Kornberg, Jewish Programming Chair

Class of 2020

Major: Computer Science

Hometown: San Diego, CA

From Michael: I grew up in a very supportive and Jewish community and I've always had a keen sense of my own Jewish identity. This probably came from having Jewish values so infused with my everyday life, whether it was in the Jewish day school I attended, to the Jewish summer camp I went to every summer, or in my Kadima and USY life.