Recent GS alum Elan Ganeles passed away Monday, according to an email sent to Columbia students Tuesday evening.
Editor’s warning: Mentions of death and gun violence
Elan Ganeles, a recent graduate of the Columbia School of General Studies, passed away on Monday. Dean of the School of General Studies Lisa Rosen-Metsch and Dean of Undergraduate Student Life Cristen Kromm sent emails to the Columbia undergraduate community on Tuesday night.
Ganeles was killed in a shooting outside of Jericho. He was visiting the region to attend the wedding of a friend.
Ganeles was born in West Hartford, Connecticut and started at Columbia in 2018. Before college, he served in the IDF and spent time as a Kibbutz volunteer. He graduated from GS in 2022 with a double major in Sustainable Development and Neuroscience & Behavior. Ganeles is survived by his parents, Andrew and Carolyn, and two younger brothers, Simon and Gabriel.
An active member of the Jewish community at Columbia, Ganeles participated in the Kraft Center First Year Leadership Fellowship, the TAMID Consulting Group, the Wednesday Night Learning Program, and Yavneh. He also attended Shabbat Dinners and studied with Rabbi Yuda of Chabad.
In Dean Rosen-Metsch’s email, several of Ganeles’s friends from his time at Columbia shared memories they had with him. His former roommate described him as “the best friend you could ask for.” Others who knew him well said he was “one of the most inquisitive, friendly, and thoughtful classmates I was privileged to meet at Columbia” and “an impassioned and vibrant person [who] cared really deeply for his friends and family, and had an unrivaled zest for life.”
Columbia/Barnard Hillel and Chabad held a gathering Tuesday evening at the Sundial at 7:30 pm to remember Ganeles. Following the remembrance, the Kraft Center was open as a support space for students and alumni.
Deans Rosen-Metsch and Kromm also highlighted the resources available to Columbia students at this time, including Counseling and Psychological Services and Columbia Religious Life, with links to these resources included below.
Email sent to General Studies students on Tuesday, February 28:
Dear GS Students,
I write with profound sadness to inform you of the loss of a member of our GS community, Elan Ganeles ’22, who was killed by a gunman in a terror attack just outside Jericho yesterday. Elan was visiting Israel to attend the wedding of a friend.
A native of West Hartford, Connecticut, Elan came to Columbia in 2018, after spending time as a Kibbutz volunteer and serving in the IDF. A dean’s list student, he graduated in 2022 with a double major in Sustainable Development and Neuroscience & Behavior.
During his time at Columbia, Elan was active in the Jewish community on campus. At the Kraft Center, Elan was a participant in the First Year Leadership Fellowship, and was involved in TAMID Consulting Group, the Wednesday Night Learning Program, and Yavneh. Elan would study and get coffee with Rabbi Yuda of Chabad and participated in Shabbat Dinners.
Elan’s former roommate at Columbia described him as “the best friend you could ask for.” Others who knew him well during his time at Columbia said he was “one of the most inquisitive, friendly, and thoughtful classmates I was privileged to meet at Columbia” and said he was “an impassioned and vibrant person [who] cared really deeply for his friends and family, and had an unrivaled zest for life.”
Our thoughts are with his family as they mourn, observing the Jewish ritual of shiva this week. Elan is survived by his parents Andrew and Carolyn, and two younger brothers, Simon and Gabriel.
The loss of a member of our community is always difficult and I want to remind all of us that we are not alone in dealing with loss. The entire staff at Columbia GS, as well as our colleagues throughout the campus, are available to offer continued support to GS students.
For those who would like to gather, Columbia/Barnard Hillel and Chabad at Columbia University invite students and alumni to join us this evening at the Sundial at 7:30 pm to remember Elan Ganeles. Immediately following the gathering, students and alumni are invited to the 5th floor of the Kraft Center where there will be space to support one another.
There are a number of additional resources available to you: Counseling and Psychological Services (CPS) is available via the number below. As always, you can reach out to your academic advisor directly, and members of the Office of the University Chaplain are all available to provide you with additional support. I have listed contact information and additional resources below.
With deepest sympathy,
Dean of Columbia School of General Studies
Email sent to Columbia College and School of Engineering students on Tuesday, February 28 at 6:24 PM:
I write to share the following message from Dean Lisa Rosen-Metsch regarding the recent death of alumnus Elan Ganeles GS’22. We join the entire General Studies community in sending our deepest sympathy and condolences to Elan’s family and friends.
Each of us is impacted by the loss of a community member in different ways. I encourage you to reach out to your peers in GS and each of the schools to offer comfort to one other.
Should you need additional support, you will find community resources and contact information below. Please do not hesitate to reach out.
My thoughts are with you,
Dean of Undergraduate Student Life
Counseling and Psychological Services (CPS) provides 24/7 phone support at 212.854.2878.
Columbia Religious Life can be reached for spiritual counseling at email@example.com or 212-854-2184. For those on campus, Earl Hall and Saint Paul’s Chapel are open from 9am-6pm Monday through Friday, for prayer and reflection.
Your advisers in the Berick Center for Student Advising can be reached for personal support by scheduling an appointment that is convenient for you.
Professional staff in Residential Life are available should you need support. An RA on-duty can connect you with the Residence Hall Director on-call.
The Nightline Peer Listening service is available from 9:00 pm to 2:00 am at 212-854-7777 if you need help finding resources or simply someone to talk to.
Cover Image via Bwog Archives
@Anonymous Jericho is not in Israel.
@Anonymous I would change title to he was killed in violent terrorist attacking in Israel, not “passed away.”
@Anonymous Thank you for this beautifully written piece about Elan. Something to note- Elan did not ‘pass away’, he was killed in a terror attack.