The department of Jewish studies at Tulane University in New Orleans received an anonymous $2 million gift that will be used to establish a chair for the Contemporary Jewish Life Endowed Fund, the university announced on Monday.

The money will be put towards the salary and other expenses associated with the chair’s academic work. That designated person will participate in the Stuart and Suzanne Grant Center for the American Jewish Experience, which opens July 1.

“We are honored to be able to endow Tulane’s chair in contemporary Jewish studies,” said the donors, parents of a recent Tulane graduate. “It embodies Jewish and universal values so important to the humanities in shaping and inspiring the future.”

“With Tulane’s interdisciplinary approach to education, it will not only make Tulane a leader in the field, but will also serve as a model for national and international collaboration,” they added.

Michael Cohen, professor and chair of the department at Tulane University, said “this gift allows us to add an internationally recognized scholar to our faculty, whose work will inspire students and spark open discussion about the Jews’ role in the contemporary world. Our strength in the American Jewish experience will make this chair of contemporary Jewry the most impactful of its kind in the nation.”

Brian Edwards, dean of the School of Liberal Arts, where the department of Jewish studies is located, added: “By enhancing scholarship and teaching on the diversity of the American Jewish experience, we are committed to combating anti-Semitism through knowledge—a vision we share with these donors.”

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