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Alumni Spotlight: Joshua Schleien

For CSUN alum Joshua Schleien, he’s always felt like Hillel was his home… because it quite literally was for a period of time. He said, “Well I lived here at Hillel in the old apartment in the back. I remember having New Years here in 2018 and having a party that was a lot of fun. I also worked the front desk at Hillel, was the art intern, and was involved with Matadors for Israel at CSUN.”

Upon his graduation in December of 2018, Joshua took some time off before pursuing a career in higher education. “Once I graduated I took a semester off before starting at Cal Lutheran to get my Masters degree in teaching. I finished my student teaching in 2020, right when Covid-19 hit. So, I got all of my things and moved out to Lancaster. I bought a condo out there and taught online for a year before completing my teaching certificate. I experienced antisemitism out in Lancaster, in work and outside of work, and I decided to come back to the Valley because that left a bad taste in my mouth.”

Coming back to the Valley felt best for Josh because it meant he could come back to his community and feel more free to share his Judaism with others. He said, “Now I’m working in the Valley, I work across the street from Hillel 818 at Holmes Middle School. I’m continuing to teach history, 6th and 7th grade, and I even include a little bit of Jewish studies. I like that I can give that part of myself to my students and also maintain my Jewish community in the Valley as a member of the Hillel Young Alumni Circle.”

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