Spiritual practices and religious identity part of a Vassar education.
Listed below are the currently active student-led groups, supported and sponsored by the Office of Religious and Spiritual Life and Contemplative Practices. Whether you’re a long-time member of a particular tradition or simply exploring your spiritual identity, all students are welcome at services, discussion groups, and other activities of any of these groups.
To get more information or to get involved, please contact:
Meeting times and places are subject to change. Contact groups for the most current information.
Buddhist Sangha (from the Sanskrit for community) is for people who practice or are curious about any sect of Buddhist teachings (dharma). The group meets weekly on Tuesdays at 8:30 a.m. and Thursdays at 8:30 p.m. via Zoom during distance learning or in-person on the Raymond Avenue veranda of the Chapel Tower. Buddhist Sangha also takes periodic trips to local Buddhist centers, sponsors dharma talks and provides a forum to share questions, experiences and information related to any sect of Buddhist thought and practice. Please contact Buddhist Sangha for meeting location and/or a link to join on Zoom.
Chabad Jewish Community (CJC)
Chabad Jewish Community (CJC) is a fun, inclusive Jewish community! From Shabbat dinners and programming for all Jewish holidays, to individual and group Torah study, to volunteering in our surrounding Poughkeepsie community, come explore Judaism in many different ways and find how you connect. Our goal is to make Judaism and Jewish practice accessible and relevant for all Jewish students on campus- from the unaffiliated, secular student to the more practicing student. CJC’s weekly board meetings are open to all who want to be involved! Our practice has been to join Chabad on Fulton (the local Chabad house one block away from campus) for our Shabbat dinners every Friday at 7 p.m. for a family-style, home-cooked meal, however, we are currently meeting virtually and in-person on Joss Beach. Please contact Chabad Jewish Community for more information, meeting location and/or a link to join on Zoom.
Episcopal Church at Vassar College (ECVC)
The Episcopal Church at Vassar College (ECVC) sponsors a weekly Sunday Worship at 4:00 p.m. and a gathering we call a “Free for All,” Tuesdays at 6:00 p.m. Our meetings are currently being held virtually. Please contact ECVC for more information and/or a link to join on Zoom.
Secular Student Alliance (SSA)
The Secular Student Alliance at Vassar (SSA) promotes community for atheists, agnostics, humanists, questioning students, and other freethinkers at Vassar College. SSA seeks to dispel harmful stereotypes and misunderstandings of what it means to be an agnostic or humanist, and inform each other and the Vassar community on the meaning and liberation that secular beliefs and ethics can bring to one’s life. SSA hopes to engage in conversation with other religious groups to create more tolerant, plural societies, and advocate for and protect the rights of freethinkers, including through robust state-church separation activism. Secular Student Alliance did not meet this term, but we are hoping that the group will reestablish next semester. If you are interested in this group, please contact the Office of Religious and Spiritual Life and Contemplative Practices (RSLCP).
Sikh Student Association (SSA)
The Sikh Student Association (SSA) has both a goal of being a support system (Sadh Sangat) for its Sikh members, and raising awareness of Sikh values and struggles for the greater campus and communities. The primary goal is to provide a community of support through equality, love, and compassion. One major project of the SSA has been replacing Sikh stereotypes and unconscious stigmas with awareness of Sikhi. SSA looks forward to returning to our weekly trips to the local Gurdwara Sahib (a place of worship for all) at Gurudwara Midhudson Sikh Cultural Society in Wappingers Falls, NY (free transportation provided) and holding its monthly meetings and events for the campus and local communities. We are currently meeting every two or three weeks, typically on Sunday evenings via Zoom. Please contact the students below for meeting dates and times and for a link to join on Zoom. All are welcome.
Vassar’s “UU” group engages spirituality and social issues, working to build a welcoming community in the non-creedal traditions of Unitarian Universalists. The group is a VSA organization that met weekly for creative worship, discussion, and meditation and collaborated with the local UU congregation. The UU group did not meet this term, but we are hoping that the group will reestablish next semester. If you are interested in this group, please contact Unitarian Universalists at the link below.
Vassar Catholic Community (VCC)
The Vassar Catholic Community (VCC) works to deepen and enrich the religious life of Roman Catholics at Vassar and anyone who is interested in or has questions about Catholicism. The group is a VSA organization whose activities focus on faith, community life, and social justice. This term, VCC is meeting virtually for Catholic Reflective Prayer on Sundays at 5:00 p.m. Please contact VCC for more information and/or for the Zoom link to join.
Vassar Hindu Association
Hindu Heritage is a group for people who share a practice, heritage, or interest in any sect of Hinduism. Transportation to a local Hindu temple is available monthly. Vassar Hindu Association did not meet this term but we are hoping that the group will reestablish next semester. If you are interested in this group, please contact Vassar Hindu Association at the link below.
Vassar Intervarsity Christian Fellowship (VXF)
Vassar Christian Fellowship (VXF) is Vassar College’s chapter of Intervarsity Christian Fellowship/USA. Intervarsity’s vision is “to see students and faculty transformed, campuses renewed, and world changers developed.” As part of Intervarsity, VXF seeks to establish and advance witnessing communities of students and faculty who follow Jesus by growing in love for God, God’s Word, and God’s people from every ethnicity and culture. VXF is currently meeting on Zoom. Please write to us for more information and/or to get a Zoom link to join.
Vassar Jewish Union (VJU/Hillel)
The Vassar Jewish Union (VJU/Hillel) strives to serve the diverse needs of the Vassar Jewish Community. The group is a VSA organization that sponsors weekly Friday night services at 6:00 p.m. and dinners at 7:30 p.m. in the Bayit tent at 51 Collegeview Avenue, as well as programming for all major Jewish holidays, cultural and educational programs that explore Jewish life and Jewish identity, opportunities for social action, and social events.
Vassar Muslim Students Association (VMSA)
The Vassar Muslim Students Association (VMSA) is a group for Muslims and those interested in Islam. The group discusses issues of concern in the Muslim community and the community at large. VMSA is a VSA organization that sponsors weekly meetings on Thursdays at 8:00 p.m. and Jum’ah Prayers on Fridays from 1:30–2:15 p.m. in the Muslim Prayer Space, located on the lower level of the Old Laundry Building. VMSA also sponsors special meetings and dinners celebrating Muslim holidays, movies, speakers, and other social events for the campus community. Due to COVID-19, the group is meeting mostly online, please contact VMSA for meeting location and/or a link to join.