On May 15, 2020, the Program in Jewish Studies along with family, friends, faculty, and community members celebrated the accomplishments of the Jewish Studies class of 2020 in an online ceremony. This year, four undergraduates graduated with Jewish Studies minors and three graduate students with graduate certificates. We also honored recipients of fellowships and scholarships, award winners, interns, and members of our student advisory board.

All of our students are doing incredible things after graduation or with their awards. Scroll down to learn more!

Minor in Jewish Studies

Bailey Hoolihan

BA in History, Minor in Jewish Studies



David RuinDavid Rustemovich Ruin

BA in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Minor in Jewish Studies, and Minor in Russian Studies

For the past two years, David served as a member of the Jewish Studies Student Advisory Board. After graduating, he plans to study for the MCAT and apply to medical schools. 


Minor in Hebrew & Israel Studies

Adam AustinAdam Marcus Austin

BS in Computer Science, Minor in Hebrew & Israel Studies

After Adam's graduation from CU, he will begin work at a local startup. 


Abigail MendelAbigail Mendel

BA in Psychology, Minor in Hebrew & Israel Studies, Minor in Leadership Studies, and Certificate in Peace, Conflict, and Security Studies

Abigail plans to take a year off after graduation before returning to school for law or non-profit management.


Graduate Certificate in Jewish Studies

Gregg DrinkwaterGregg Joseph Drinkwater

PhD in History, Graduate Certificate in Jewish Studies
Dissertation: Building Queer Judaism: Gay Synagogues and the Transformation of an American Religious Community, 1948-1990

Gregg's dissertation explores how gay and lesbian jews navigated the anti-gay attitudes among leaders of the American Jewish community in the decades after World War II and then how they went on to transform the landscape of liberal Judaism in the United States in the 1970s and 1980s. Gregg argues that by creating gay and lesbian synagogues in the wake of the Gay Liberation Movement and asserting public gay and Jewish identifies, gay and lesbian Jews broadened the boundaries of normative sexual and gender roles within liberal American Judaism.

This fall, Gregg will be a lecturer at CU Boulder, teaching a survey of Jewish history to the year 1492 as well as a course in queer U.S. history. In spring 2021, he will be the Norman and Syril Reitman Visiting Scholar at the Bildner Center for the Study of Jewish Life at Rutgers University in New Jersey.

Jacob Allen FlawsJacob Allen Flaws

PhD in History, Graduate Certificate in Jewish Studies
Dissertation: Spaces of Treblinka

In his dissertation, Spaces of Treblinka, Jacob explored the levels of historical space that existed at Treblinka through mapping the experiences of Jewish, German, and Polish witnesses to the death camp. After graduation, Jacob plans to turn his dissertation into a monograph to submit for publication. He plans to find a teaching position at a college or university. 

Adi NesterAdi Nester

PhD in German Studies, Graduate Certificate in Jewish Studies
Dissertation: Biblical Operas and the Discourse of German-Jewish Difference, 1907-1959

Upon graduation, Adi will start a new position as Assistant Professor of German and Jewish Studies at the University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill.