Hillel Jewish Student Organization Visits Rangel Lab and Apiary

Students from the Texas A&M Hillel Jewish Student Organization recently visited Dr. Juliana Rangel's lab at Riverside Campus to learn about honey and how it is connected to the Jewish New Year celebration Rosh Hashanah. Photo by Juliana Rangel.

Students from the Texas A&M Hillel Jewish Student Organization recently visited Dr. Juliana Rangel’s lab at Riverside Campus to learn about honey and how it is connected to the Jewish New Year celebration Rosh Hashanah. Photo by Juliana Rangel.

BRYAN, Texas – Members of the Hillel Jewish Student Organization headed out for Texas A&M’s Riverside campus to get the latest buzz on honey and how honey is made during a recent tour in September.

The students learned several different things about honey, including how it is made, what part honey bees played in the role, and how honey is used in such religious celebrations as the Jewish New Year, or Rosh Hashanah.

Hillel’s Jewish Student Life Coordinator Veronica Beskin said that the trip was perfect because they celebrated annually by eating symbolic foods, such as apples, dipped in honey, which represents making the year ahead a sweet year.

During the tour, group had the chance to visit with the staff and researchers and listen to presentations from several of the grad students on their research in the lab and got a chance to taste different types of honey.

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Grad student Adrian Fisher showing a honey comb from the apiary during the tour. Submitted Photo.

Beskin heard about Rangel’s lab after talking to Rangel when planning the organization’s yearly events and wanted to do something different to celebrate Rosh Hashanah.

“Back in May I was planning our holiday programs and did research looking for something fun and unique to celebrate the holiday. Some people go apple picking, but since this an agricultural school I knew there would be more options,” she said. “I honestly found the Honey Bee Lab website and emailed Dr. Rangel asking if a tour would be possible. She put it together and included a wonderful event for us as well.”

Rangel was very excited to have the group visit to learn about bees and how honey was produced.

Pierre Lau showing his research to students from the Hillel Jewish Student Center at a recent tour. Photo by Juliana Rangel

Pierre Lau showing his research to students from the Hillel Jewish Student Center at a recent tour. Photo by Juliana Rangel

“We are delighted that diverse organizations in our community can take advantage of the great resources available at our bee research facility,” Rangel said.

“We all thoroughly enjoyed our visit. I brought 10 students last week, and they have informed me they want more programs just like that! Our experience at the Honey Bee Lab exceeded my expectations,” Beskin said.

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