To the Future

We are the future of the Jewish Community.

We met at Hillel and embarked north on the two and half hour drive, passing the farm fields and then suburban sprawl as we made our way to the City. We missed class and studied in the car. There were 7 of us, ranging from 19 to 23. There was some conversation, Wikipedia-reading, and daydreaming—what would that evening bring?

We are the future of the Jewish community. The 7 of us, making up the 100-some young adults invited along with the Chicago Jewish United Fund community leadership, to hear the former Israeli President, Prime Minister, and Nobel Peace Prize laureate.

He sat there, so calm and poised and wise, listening to the question. And then he spoke to the young adults, all so eager and yearning for his words. His ideas, strung together like beads on a necklace, composed his message to us … the future.

When there’s nothing, you can do everything.

The past is an on-going mistake. We must move forward.

Make this world a better place to live.

Stay informed, be curious. Invest in friends.

We are all different; we must act on these differences.

To be the wisest means to be honest with your values.

Moses, after all, was the first democrat and led the first revolution.

To be great means to serve a great cause.

To the young woman sitting in the back corner of the room—who did her 6th grade biography report on Golda Meir, experienced war for the first time last summer, and was interviewed speaking to a Palestinian about peace—his words were what she needed.

To believe in them … to believe in we … to believe in the future amidst the shattering of the glass wall separating anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism.

The visionary, a pioneer of the past, welcomed us into that future.

Go ahead, change the world.

About the Author
Hannah Schlacter is a student at the University of Illinois College of Business Honors Program. Passion, ambition, and drive embody her character and impact. Considered a leader in advocacy, she is deeply committed to Zionism, environmentalism, and entrepreneurship. Hannah seeks a career path that will allow her to impact these diverse passions.