College of Charleston

The Yaschik/Arnold Jewish Studies Program at the College of Charleston is the result of the vision and generosity of Henry and Sylvia Vlosky Yaschik, who began the program in 1984 to honor their parents; commitment to philanthropy and community involvement. The matching endowment from Norman and Gerry Sue Arnold in 1998 enabled the Program to significantly expand its offerings.

Jewish Studies at the College of Charleston is unique in its incorporation of Jewish student life, via Hillel, as an integral part of the Program. The College of Charleston currently has nearly eight hundred Jewish students and CofC Hillel is very active in arranging weekly Shabbat services, Wednesday meet-to-eats, and other events and celebrations to keep students interested in Judaism engaged and interacting with one another. For more on what CofC Hillel does, check out their website.

Jewish Studies at the College also emphasizes community outreach as a hallmark of its program. By sponsoring numerous events, lectures, discussions, and Sunday morning brunches that are open to the public, the Program serves as a bridge between town and gown, between the academic and broader South Carolina community. More recently, the Program assumed the last remaining programs of the Charleston Jewish Community Center, the Jewish Book and Jewish Film Festivals.

The Sylvia Vlosky Yaschik Jewish Studies Center, at the corner of Glebe and Wentworth Street, has been the home of the Program since October 2002. The Center houses the offices of faculty members of the Jewish Studies Program, CofC Hillel, and the Jewish Historical Society of South Carolina. It also offers Arnold Hall, a state-of-the-art meeting and conference room where educational and cultural programs are conducted, benefiting both students and the community-at-large. In January 2016, the Jewish Studies Center completed an expansion, doubling in size and including additional classroom space, offices, and Marty's Place, a dining hall offering Kosher, Vegan, and Vegetarian options.

We encourage all who are interested in the Jewish Studies Program to become a part of it, whether by matriculating as a full-time student, attending a community program, or auditing a course. Community participation has long been the lifeblood of the Program, and we have built our foundation on the contributions of a growing group of dedicated donors. To discuss giving opportunities, please contact Program Director, Dr. Yaron Ayalon at 843.953.7625 or via email.

Yaron Ayalon

Director, Jewish Studies Program

Associate Professor of Jewish and Middle Eastern Studies, 843.953.7625

Joshua Shanes

Associate Director, Jewish Studies Program

Director, Norman and Gerry Sue Arnold Center for Israel Studies

Associate Professor of Jewish Studies, 843.953.3929

Ezra Cappell

Professor of Jewish Studies and English, 843.953.5874

Chad Gibbs

Director, Zucker/Goldberg Center for Holocaust Studies

Assistant Professor of Jewish Studies, 843.953.5156

Ashley Walters

Director, Pearlstine/Lipov Center for Southern Jewish Culture

Assistant Professor, Jewish Studies, 843.953.2036

Keren Ayalon

Instructor of Hebrew, 843.953.7585

Jewish Studies Staff Members

Kim Browdy

Associate Director for Community Relations, 843.953.4930

Enid Idelsohn

Director of Operations and Administrator for Jewish Studies, 843.953.3918

Jordan Kodner

Director, College of Charleston Hillel, 843.953.2118

Elana Tiger

Engagement and Program Associate, College of Charleston Hillel, 843.953.3917

Jewish Studies Affiliated & Retired faculty

Richard Bodek

Professor, History, 843.953.8030

John Huddlestun

Associate Professor, Religious Studies, 843.953.4996

Moshe Rhodes

Assistant Professor, Biology, 843.953.8087

Dale Rosengarten

Curator, Jewish Heritage Collection, emeritus, 843.953.8028

Theodore Rosengarten

Zucker/Goldberg Chair of Holocaust Studies, emeritus

Barry Stiefel

Associate Professor, Art and Architectural History, 843.953.3888

Martin Perlmutter OBM

Founding Director of the Jewish Studies Program

The Yaschik/Arnold Jewish Studies Program has a Community Advisory Board which promotes the interests of the Jewish Studies Program and serves as a bridge to the larger community of Charleston, South Carolina, and beyond. Advisory Board members meet twice a year to review the Program and make suggestions about its future direction. Members of the Board also serve on various program committees.

Members of the Community Advisory Board

Chairperson: Louis Tick, Charleston

Chair-elect: Scott Hellman, Charleston

Immediate Past chair: Robert Steinberg, Charleston

Yaron Ayalon, ex officio, Charleston

Tim Johnson, ex officio, Charleston

Gerry Sue Arnold, life member, Columbia

Sharyn Bluestein, Mt. Pleasant

Pam Kaplan, John’s Island

Phillis Mair, Charleston

Olga Mintzer, Sullivan’s Island

Arnold Nemirow, Mt. Pleasant

Erica Rabhan, Charleston

Jeffrey Rosenblum, Charleston

Rachel Kronick Rothbart, Los Angeles, CA

Mollie Selmanoff, Baltimore, MD

Regina Shapiro, life member, Atlanta, GA

Michael Sharnoff, Washington, DC

Michael Shemtov, Atlanta, GA

Loren Ziff, Sullivan's Island

Anita Zucker, Past-Chair & life member, Charleston

Founders of Our Program:

Norman and Gerry Sue Arnold

Edna Banov

Shera Lee Ellison Berlin and Children

Donald and Bobbi Bernstein

Stanley B. Farbstein

Stanley and Teddy Feldberg

The Goer Family

The Hirschman Family

Alan and Charlotte Kahn

The Stanley and Charlot Karesh Family

Harriet and Ben H. Keyserling

Jerry and Sue Kline

Nathan B. Kogan

Allan and Jeanne Lieberman

Rabbi Hirsch Zvi Levin

Allan L. and Carol A. Mysel

The Pearlstine Family

Harold and Esther Sherman

Louis and Phyllis Tanenbaum

Robert M. and Deborah C. Turkewitz

Henry and Sylvia Yaschik

Jerry and Anita G. Zucker

Erected in 2002, the Sylvia Vlosky Yaschik Jewish Studies Center is the center of Jewish activity at the College of Charleston. Located in the heart of the historic campus, the Center houses the administrative offices for the Yaschik/Arnold Jewish Studies Program, a lounge and offices for the College of Charleston Hillel and the offices of the Jewish Historical Society of South Carolina, as well as offices for some of the professors that teach in the Jewish Studies Program. It also offers a state of the art conference room, the Rabbi Hirsch Levin Judaica Library, and Arnold Hall, a large all-purpose meeting room with an adjoining kitchen that accommodates events, lectures, and banquets. The third floor houses offices for the Program's three academic centers of excellence: The Pearlstine/Lipov Center for Southern Jewish Culture, the Zucker/Goldberg Center for Holocaust Studies, and the Arnold Center for Israel Studies.

The original building was a three-story 12,000 square foot facility at the corner of Glebe and Wentworth Streets, immediately across the street from Grace Episcopal Church and one house down from the President’s House. It is the site formerly occupied by Peroclene Cleaners, a dry cleaning operation run by Jerold and Lilah Hirschman. The Center was designed by Rosenblum/Coe Architects and built by M.B. Kahn Construction.

The building is named after the late Sylvia Vlosky Yaschik, a kind woman of valor and a pillar of the Charleston Jewish community. Mother of three daughters and grandmother of six grandchildren, Sylvia was associated with most every Jewish organization in Charleston, often in a leadership capacity. The Jewish Studies Center is a fitting tribute to her well-lived life.

An addition to the Jewish Studies Center opened in January 2016, doubling the size of the building, including additional classroom space and Marty's Place, a College of Charleston dining hall offering kosher, vegan and vegetarian options. Under the supervision of the Kosher Commission of Charleston (KCC) and operated by Aramark, the dining hall accepts the student meal plan, dining dollars, as well as cash and credit transactions, and is open to the wider Charleston community for dine-in or take-out. Marty's Place is open August to May. Hours of operation vary. For more information, please consult the College of Charleston Dining Services website.