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Meet Emily Goldstein: Leader in DePaul's Jewish student community

Emily Goldstein
From Radio DePaul to campus tour guide to leader in DePaul's Jewish student community, Emily Goldstein strives to be an active member of  the Blue Demon campus. (DePaul University/Randall Spriggs)

From a campus tour guide to on-air at Radio DePaul, Emily Goldstein, a third-year film and television student with a minor in creative writing, has found many ways to get the most out of her college experience. However, her connection to the university’s Jewish community is what made her feel most at home. 

“I started going to the Jewish Life Center for the bagels,” Goldstein quips. She became active in Jewish life on campus during her sophomore year after feeling something was missing. She then decided to reintroduce Judaism into her everyday routine.

The Jewish Life Center and Hillel, a Jewish student organization, are two ways Goldstein is active within the Jewish community at DePaul. Both allow her to incorporate the ideas and culture of Judaism into her daily life, and connect with others who share her faith tradition. 

“Emily is an amazing Jewish student and leader here,” says Matt Charnay, coordinator of Jewish Student Life. “She always brings creativity and a fresh attitude to our events. She is a famous campus tour guide for the Office of Admissions and is known for her work on Radio DePaul.” 

Goldstein’s involvement with Hillel includes delivering anti-Semitism trainings, developing anti-Semitism workshops and assisting with other events. Metro Chicago Hillel, a Jewish life center for college students at a number of Chicago-based schools, recently invited Goldstein and other students to take part in an anti-Semitism training led by Cherie Brown of the National Coalition Building Institute. The institute aims to address issues of oppression, diversity and inclusion.

“It was important to attend the training because, for the first time, I was invited to participate in a forum that validated and legitimized many experiences I had growing up,” Goldstein says. “It was incredible to learn about anti-Semitism as integrally linked to all other forms of racism, oppression and discrimination.”
Goldstein is now working with Hillel to develop an anti-Semitism course consisting of a series of workshops for students in the Chicago area.

“The training is still in the works, but we’re approaching it in three parts: What is Anti-Semitism? How does it affect you? How can we talk about it with other people?” she explains.
Goldstein’s on-campus activities also extend beyond the university’s Jewish student life. She hosted an open mic night for the DePaul Activities Board earlier this academic year and co-edited a book with Paul Booth, an associate professor in the College of Communication. The duo edited the text for “A Celebration of Disney,” DePaul’s seventh annual 2019 Pop Culture Conference. As a member at Radio DePaul, she also helped develop a podcast, “Shout out to My Future Significant Other.”

“It’s essentially an hour long personal ad for one of our single friends,” she laughs. “Hopefully, one of our millions and millions of listeners will be interested in our guest and reach out, thus rendering them a success story.”

With such a busy schedule, you might still be wondering what makes Goldstein a star campus tour guide? 

“I’m not really sure, but I think it is because I am genuinely able to communicate my love for DePaul,” she says. “It’s rooted in the way this community has accepted me for all I am.”

Learn more about Jewish student life and other religious communities on the Division of Mission and Ministry website.

More information on DePaul’s annual pop culture conference, as well as the May 2020 conference, “A Celebration of Superheroes,” can be found on a website designed by Goldstein. You also can see Goldstein perform poetry at The Martin in Wicker Park on Thursday, Feb. 27.