Jewish Students Describe Facing Antisemitism on Campus to Members of Congress

Nine Jewish students from prominent universities told members of Congress on Thursday that they feel unsafe on campus, but that their complaints of antisemitism had been waved away by university administrations.

At a bipartisan round table organized by the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, the students described various episodes of antisemitism they had experienced on campus since the Oct. 7 attack by Hamas on Israel, accusing their schools of pandering to violent and disruptive protesters while minimizing the threat to Jewish students.

“I’ve been told over and over again that the university is taking these issues seriously, but always — no action,” said Noah Rubin, a student at the University of Pennsylvania.

The round table in Washington was led by Representative Virginia Foxx, a Republican from North Carolina. The 20 members of Congress, including Ms. Foxx, who participated were evenly divided between Republicans and Democrats.

The nine students — from Harvard, Penn, M.I.T., Columbia and five other universities — were picked by the House committee, and the Republican majority on the panel had a stronger hand in choosing them, according to an aide to Ms. Foxx. Committee members looked for students from universities that had high-profile incidents of antisemitism.

Several Jewish groups showed support for the congressional committee’s efforts on Thursday, sending representatives to sit in the audience. But some critics have dismissed hearings on the issue, considering them part of a broader G.O.P.-driven culture war against colleges and universities, which are perceived to be bastions of liberalism.

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