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News at HUC-JIR
  • HUC-JIR/LA Founder's Day Observed; Dr. Michael Zeldin Speaks
    Dr. Zeldin, Professor of Jewish Education and Director of the Rhea Hirsch School of Education, called for bold experimentation and innovation in Jewish Education in the Founders Day Address he delivered in Los Angeles on February 26. He encouraged educators, rabbis, and lay champions of Jewish education to think in new ways about the purpose and content of Jewish education.
  • FSU Rabbis Gather In Jerusalem for Annual Seminar
    The six members of the Rabbinic Council of the former Soviet Union gathered earlier this month in Jerusalem for their third annual conference for professional, spiritual and personal renewal. HUC-JIR conducted the conference. According to Rabbi Alona Lisitsa, director of HUC-JIR's FSU Project, the annual conference allows the participants to augment their rabbinic and organizational skills while providing them time for professional reflection far from their daily responsibilities. The rabbis attended study sessions led by scholars from the HUC-JIR staff including Rabbi Michael Marmur, Dean of HUC-JIR/Jerusalem, and Rabbi Yehoyada Amir, Rabbi David Levine, Rabbi Naamah Kelman, and Rabbi David Wilfond.
  • Dr. Alfred Gottschalk Delivered Rabbi Nathan A. Perilman Memorial Sermon-Lecture at Temple Emanu-El in NY
    Dr. Gottschalk, Chancellor Emeritus of HUC-JIR, delivered the Rabbi Nathan A. Perilman lecture at Emanu-El on February 23, 2008. He spoke on "Prophetic Thinking in a Non-Prophetic Society," and dealt with the legacy of Elijah, Prophet of God.
  • Rabbi Ruth Alpers Certified as Full CPE Supervisor
    The National Certification Commission of the Association for Clinical Pastoral Education has just certified Rabbi Ruth Alpers as a full CPE Supervisor. Rabbi Alpers, Jay Stein Director of Human Relations at HUC-JIR/Cincinnati, is one of only three Reform Rabbis to have achieved this highest level of ACPE certification.
  • Kalsman Institute on Judaism and Health's "Judaism, Health, and Healing for Physicians" Launched in Phoenix
    The Kalsman Institute on Judaism and Health and the Deutsch Family Shalom Center of Temple Chai in Phoenix kicked off the latest educational initiative designed to use Jewish study as a source of renewal to help physicians integrate clinical and spiritual life. Sixteen physicians from around the country attended the Shabbat retreat.
    Upcoming Events at HUC-JIR
  • The Torah: A Women's Commentary Editor, Contributors, Featured at Panel Thursday, March 6, 2008 at Congregation Emanu-El of the City of New York
    Rabbi Jacqueline Koch Ellenson, Executive Director of the Women's Rabbinic Network, will moderate a program that includes a presentation by Dr. Andrea L. Weiss, Assistant Professor of Bible, HUC-JIR and co-editor of The Torah: A Women's Commentary, and discussion with Commentary contributors and HUC-JIR Professors Dr. Carole B. Balin, Professor of Jewish History, Dr. Alyssa Gray, Associate Professor of Codes and Responsa Literature, and Dr. Wendy Zierler, Associate Professor of Modern Jewish Literature and Feminist Studies. These scholars will explore the Commentary's meaning and significance from the perspectives of Bible scholarship, intellectual history, literature, and rabbinic interpretation.
  • Rochelle Rubinstein: Marginalia to Open at HUC-JIR/NY March 11, 2008
    Marginalia, an installation of printed, painted, and carved wood panels by Rochelle Rubinstein with collaborative book works by Nessa Rapoport and Rochelle Rubinstein, will open at the HUC-JIR/NY Museum March 11th, with a reception and program from 5:30-7:30 p.m.
  • Dr. Rick Sarason Leads On-line Session March 3rd-28th; Available for HUC-JIR Alumni
    The Joint Commission for Sustaining Rabbinic Education's 10 Great Texts course "The God Who Weeps: Divine Pathos as a Model for Human Empathy?" with Dr. Rick Sarason is open to all HUC-JIR alumni. Dr. Sarason is Professor of Rabbinic Literature and Thought and the Associate Editor of the Hebrew Union College Annual.
  • Upcoming HUC-JIR Faculty Lectures

    Dr. Eugene Borowitz will speak at Westchester Reform Temple in Scarsdale, New York, March 2, 2008.

    Rabbi Michael J. Cook will speak at Congregation Beth Shalom in Brandon, Florida, February 29 and March 1, 2008.

    Dr. Steven M. Cohen will speak at the University Club at University of California-Davis, March 3, 2008.

    Rabbi Michael Marmur will speak at Westchester Reform Temple in Scarsdale, New York, March 7, 8, and 9, 2008.

    Dr. Stanley Nash will speak at Hunter College W217 West Building, New York, New York, March 7, 2008
    HUC-JIR in the News
  • HUC-JIR Funds Muslim Scholar's Rescue – The Jewish Journal
    Ismail Bardhi had arrived as a refugee through HUC-JIR's Scholar Rescue Fund. The former Dean of the faculty of Islamic Studies in Skopje, Macedonia, Bardhi was beaten and stripped of his title because he refused to cede to the vision of Kosovar nationalists, who in rising to power were marginalizing secular Muslims and "Islamic humanists" like Bardhi. "In 1939 and 1940, Hebrew Union College had a program to rescue a number of scholars from Europe," said Rabbi David Ellenson, president of HUC-JIR. "One of these men was Abraham Joshua Heschel. I thought of that when I received [the] initial request to find a place for Professor Bardhi. I recalled how HUC had done this for Jewish scholars who were in this kind of situation 50 years ago and felt there really was a Jewish imperative to provide refuge in this case as well."
  • Changing Their Tune – The Jewish Week
    Cantor Bruce Ruben, Director of the School of Sacred Music at HUC-JIR, says as the role of cantor has changed – incorporating more counseling, adult education and really being co-clergy with the rabbi – more people are coming to the school with varied pasts, from former social workers and finance people to opera singers and others with musical experience.
  • Is This a Job for a Nice Jewish Boy or Girl? You Bet It Is! – The Jewish Journal
    Dr. Michael Zeldin writes, "Maybe in a few years we will be able to look back and say that we changed the landscape of Jewish life by making sure that each Jewish child and each adult Jewish learner encountered passionate, well-prepared Jewish educators, and each institution was led by visionary leaders who brought with them the wealth of talents and the gifts they acquired as they prepared for their careers. But to be able to look back this way, we have to work today to bring larger numbers of young people into the profession of Jewish education and encourage them to seek out the very best professional preparation possible."
  • L.A.'s Latino Mayor Welcomed as One of the Tribe – The Forward
    "In Los Angeles, to win elections, one has to build coalition structures," said Steven Windmueller, Dean of HUC-JIR/LA, campus, and an expert on Jewish politics. "What Antonio did was take the same model, except it was now Latinos and Jews, and figure out a way in which they galvanized around his campaign."
  • Adoptive Jewish Families Head Back to China – The Forward
    Rabbi Elena Stein, C '97, is engaging in research to plan a trip back to China with her daughter Dahlia. Touring with other adoptive families would require finding free time to partake in Jewish activities, while traveling with a Jewish heritage tour would deprive Stein and her daughter of experiencing China with families like their own. "I would like for it to be a Chinese-Jewish tour because I would like for her to see her identities as integrated and not separated." she said.
    Spotlight on HUC-JIR's Programs and
    Research Resources
  • Leadership Institute Opens New Cohort; Holds Alumni Network Symposium
    The Leadership Institute for Congregational School Educators opened its new cohort with a learning retreat at the Glen Cove Mansion on Long Island. On February 11, approximately 30 alumni and mentors from the first cohort come to study with Dale Glasser, Director of the Department of Synagogue Management at the URJ.
  • The Myth of the Trefa Banquet: American Culinary Culture and the Radicalization of Food Policy in American Reform Judaism by Lance J. Sussman (PDF)
    Lance Sussman debunks many of the myths associated with the infamous Trefa Banquet of 1883, at which the Hebrew Union College celebrated the ordination of its first four graduates.
    Founded in 1875, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion is the nation's oldest institution of higher Jewish education and the academic, spiritual, and professional development center of Reform Judaism. HUC-JIR educates men and women for service to American and world Jewry as rabbis, cantors, educators, and communal service professionals and offers graduate and post-graduate degree programs for scholars of all faiths. With campuses in Cincinnati, Los Angeles, New York, and Jerusalem, HUC-JIR's scholarly resources comprise renowned library, archive, and museum collections, the American Jewish Archives, biblical archaeology excavations, research centers and institutes, and academic publications. HUC-JIR invites the community to an array of cultural and educational programs that illuminate Jewish history, culture, and contemporary creativity, and foster interfaith and multi-ethnic understanding. Visit us at
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