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News at HUC-JIR
Rep. Henry A. Waxman Receives Honorary Doctorate at HUC-JIR/LA
U.S. Congressman Henry A. Waxman, Chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee, received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree at HUC-JIR/Los Angeles at its Day of Learning for California communal leaders on March 14. In his remarks, Rep. Waxman stated: "I was raised by New Deal Democrats who felt that government had a role in ensuring that everyone has an opportunity to succeed and that a safety net should be available to make sure that no one is marginalized because of age or disability. I have no doubt that what drew me to politics were the esteem I felt for public service and my commitment to Jewish values like the concept in the Haggadah of helping all people be able to realize their full potential. While I do not believe that the role of government is to guarantee the equality of results, I sincerely believe that government does have a profound role in giving all people an equal opportunity to succeed. Some of what I consider to be and my own greatest legislative accomplishments revolve around this principle. And I am very proud to have built a strong record of progressive legislation in the environment, health care, and consumer protection. We have to seize the opportunity to put our country back on the right track, to do some good, and to help improve our society. Our Jewish values teach us to embrace these opportunities every day and to look for opportunities to engage in tzedakah and Tikkun Olam."
Please click here for Rep. Waxman's speech.
Please click here for the live video of the proceedings. More...
David Mendelsson Appointed Schusterman Visiting Professor of Israel Studies at HUC-JIR/Los Angeles and USC
Dr. David Mendelsson has been appointed the Schusterman Visiting Professor of Israel Studies at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion/Los Angeles for the 2010-2011 academic year, it was announced by Dr. Michael Marmur, Vice President for Academic Affairs, HUC-JIR. This joint appointment with the University of Southern California has been made possible by a generous grant from the Lynn and Charles Schusterman Family Foundation in conjunction with the American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprises' Scholar Development Fund, with matching grants from Lief Rosenblatt and Elliott and Robin Broidy. Dr. Marmur stated, "At HUC-JIR, we seek to train Jewish leaders who are steeped in the concept of Jewish peoplehood and nurtured by the enduring ties linking the State of Israel and Diaspora Jewry. As a leading Israeli scholar, Dr. David Mendelsson will share his scholarship and research through teaching and further reinforce our students' relationship with the people and land of Israel, building upon their required first year of study of the history, politics, and culture of Israel and intensive Hebrew language studies at our Jerusalem campus." More...
Day of Learning at HUC-JIR/LA
On Sunday, March 14, one hundred congregational leaders and community rabbis along with local Overseers joined members of HUC-JIR's faculty and student representatives for a unique day of study at the LA campus. Congressman Howard Waxman, who received his honorary degree, spoke about the Jewish values that have undergirded his public policy views. Following this opening ceremony, Sue Hochman introduced our incoming dean, Dr. Joshua Holo. In the course of the afternoon, four of HUC-JIR's younger colleagues taught classes for the attendees. In addition, Steve Breuer, adjunct instructor for HUC-JIR's School of Jewish Communal Service, taught a seminar on Synagogue Management. To close out our day, four students representing the four programs of the LA campus were interviewed by recent alum Gosia Szymanska (HUC-JIR/LA SJCS '06). More...
Dr. Matitiahu Tsevat (z"l) Passes Away at 96
Our dear friend, colleague, and teacher, Dr. Matitiahu Tsevat (Professor Emeritus of Bible at our Cincinnati campus), died on March 13, at the age of 96. Dr. Tsevat was the beloved husband of Miriam; devoted father of Dr. Joel and Jody Tsevat, David Tsevat and Susan Hummer, and the late Daniel Tsevat; loving grandfather of Rebecca and Danielle Tsevat; and dear brother of Chana Urbach and the late Eliezer Pinczover. Dr. Tsevat was buried March 16 at a private graveside funeral service. The College Community and the Tsevat family will gather for a service of remembrance (followed by a brief Shabbat service) this Friday afternoon, March 19, 4:30 pm., in the College Chapel at HUC-JIR/Cincinnati. Several faculty members will conduct the service and deliver presentations. More...
Recruitment Open House: A 24-Hour Taste of HUC-JIR
HUC-JIR is excited to welcome students to the Cincinnati, Los Angeles, and New York campuses on March 21st and 22nd. Enjoy a day in the life of the HUC-JIR campus of your choice and explore your career opportunities. It's your turn to learn about an extraordinary life at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. Registration is free. We offer home hospitality and generous travel subsidies for interested students. More...
Support progressive Judaism in Israel: Please sponsor Team HUC in the IMPJ Ride4Reform on March 14-18, 2010! HUC-JIR students and faculty on the Jerusalem Campus are gearing up to take part in the Israel Movement for Progressive Judaism's 5-day bike ride. All proceeds are used to promote Progressive Jewish ideals in Israel through the funding of social, educational, cultural and community programs in Israel. How can you help? Visit and click on "Donate Now" OR visit and click on "Credit Card Donations" in the column on the left. Thank you for your support! More...
HUC-JIR/NY Food Drive in partnership with City Harvest
The Student Association at HUC-JIR/NY, in partnership with NYC's only food rescue organization, City Harvest, is organizing a food drive. Your participation is essential in helping to ensure that as many hungry people in NYC as possible have meals. Please bring in non-perishable chametz items and leave them in the boxes by the elevator in the CL by Thursday, March 25. Thank you for your participation and for helping to make this initiative a success! More...
Faculty News
HUC-JIR is proud of our accomplished faculty:
Wendy Zierler, Associate Professor of Modern Jewish Literature and Feminist Studies at HUC-JIR/New York, was featured in the special edition issue of Tikkun magazine. The theme of the current issue is God and the 21st century. Professor Zierler's article is titled, "God in the Age of Twitter." Please click here to view this issue of Tikkun magazine. More...
HUC-JIR in the News
Remembering Alfred Gottschalk - Needle in the Bookstacks: HUC-JIR's Library Blog
Dr. Philip Miller, Director of the Klau Library at HUC-JIR/NY, writes: "The late Alfred Gottschalk was a commanding and dominating presence throughout my career at the College-Institute. He clearly relished such occasions as Opening Ceremonies, Founders' Day, Graduation, and Ordination-Investiture. But it was on Founders' Day here at the New York School that he waxed truly eloquent about Rabbi Stephen S. Wise and the Jewish Institute of Religion, where Dr. Gottschalk attended classes while still a student at Boys' High School in Brooklyn. With Founders' Day approaching, and the six month anniversary of his death, I find myself thinking about Fred and our personal interactions over the decades." More...
Lessons in Manliness: Professor Avraham Biran - The Art of Manliness
Professor Avraham Biran became the head of the Nelson Gluek School of Biblical Archaeology at HUC-JIR/Jerusalem at the age of 65. As the head of this school, he headed more than one archeological excavation, but the most famous of his excavations was the one at Tel Dan in the north of Israel. It was there he made his most important discoveries and he physically, actively, dug there until he was ninety. He led his life in a most inspiring way, passing on countless lessons to all those he encountered. More...
Making Prayer Real
Laura Geller, HUC-JIR/New York '76 and Senior Rabbi at Temple Emanuel of Beverly Hills, writes, "The spiritual challenge for us is to make our prayer life as intense as that experience must have been for our ancestors. Our challenge is to make prayer that powerful, that real. Not so simple. Making prayer real is not just the job of the clergy, although clergy need to be willing to take risks in creating prayer experiences that engage different kinds of people. Some Jews are contemplative, others more ecstatic in their spiritual practice. Still others are skeptical, or intimidated by a liturgy they don't understand and that seems to describe a God they don't believe in. At Temple Emanuel, we offer different kinds of worship experiences for that very reason - Shabbat B'-Yachad, with its full band, intense energy and soulful music created with the words of prayer projected onto a screen so our hands are free to clap and our bodies free to dance; Shabbat Unplugged, quieter, in the round, enhanced by guitar, drums and clarinet; the Shabbat morning New Emanuel Minyan, with silence as well as music, poetry and interactive learning. But no matter how perfect a worship experience might be, prayer doesn't work unless the pray-er does the work, the work of opening the heart." More...
Upcoming Events
National Leadership Symposium to Honor Dr. Norman J. Cohen, Provost Emeritus, HUC-JIR
"Moses and the Journey to Leadership: Visions for the 21st Century" -- A National Symposium Honoring Dr. Norman J. Cohen" will take place across HUC-JIR's stateside campuses on Sunday, April 18, 2010. The program will take place at 1 pm on the New York and Cincinnati campuses, and at 10 am on the Los Angeles campus - with the presentations and discussion nationally linked through HUC-JIR's e-classroom technology. Organized in tribute to Dr. Norman Cohen, Provost Emeritus and Professor of Midrash, the symposium will feature a keynote address by Dr. Cohen on Moses and leadership. Distinguished faculty scholars will respond in a national dialogue, live from their campuses in New York, Cincinnati, and Los Angeles, on leadership in the American Jewish community and preparing HUC-JIR's students for their leadership roles. The participants include Rabbi David Ellenson, President; I.H. and Anna Grancell Professor of Jewish Religious Thought; Rabbi Jerome Davidson, National Coordinator of Leadership Initiatives, New York; Rabbi Sam Joseph, Professor of Jewish Education and Leadership Development, Cincinnati; and Professor Sara Lee, Director Emerita, Rhea Hirsch School of Education, Los Angeles. A special reception for alumni, students, and friends will take place at 2:30 pm in New York at the conclusion of the symposium. At 2:45 pm in Cincinnati, there will be a panel discussion with leaders of the Cincinnati Jewish Community on "Cincinnati's Jewish Community: Past, Present, Future." To register for the symposium, please contact: Cincinnati:; Los Angeles:; New York: If you would like to make a tax-deductible contribution to the Dr. Norman J. Cohen Chair, please send your check to: Dr. Norman J. Cohen Chair, HUC-JIR, One West 4th Street, Room 418, New York, NY 10012. For questions, please call Eve Starkman at 212-824-2285. More...
The Nelson Glueck School of Biblical Archaeology: Lecture 3/25 at HUC-JIR/Jerusalem
Please join HUC-JIR/Jerusalem and The Nelson Glueck School of Biblical Archaeology as Shlomit Weksler-Bdolah presents "Excavations in the Western Wall Plaza, Jerusalem." The lecture, conducted in Hebrew, is designed to present the results of recent archaeological research to the general public in Israel. It will take place on Thursday, March 25 at 5:00 pm at HUC-JIR/Jerusalem. Admission is free. The series is supported by the Fellner Foundation and its Trustee, Mr. Frederick L. Simmons of Los Angeles. More...
Israel and Islam: Is the Malevolence Mutable?
The Middle East Studies Program at USC College and HUC-JIR's Louchheim School of Judaic Studies announce "Israel and Islam: Is the Malevolence Mutable?" Please join us at USC's Doheny Memorial Library Intellectual Commons on Thursday, March 25 from 6:30 pm - 8 pm for a lecture by Dr. Martin Sherman, USC-HUC Schusterman Visiting Israel Studies Scholar, Tel-Aviv University. Dr. Sherman is the Academic Director of the Jerusalem Summit and Research Fellow in Security Studies Program. All are welcome to attend. More...
Student Services, Sermons, Practica, Recitals, Thesis Presentations, and more!
Cincinnati - at 10:50 am unless otherwise noted:
Mar. 20 at 10:30 am: Leading Services: Jessica Karpay
Mar. 22: Leading Services: Anne Strauss and Courtney Berman
Mar. 23: Leading Services: Brent Guttman
Mar. 25: Leading Services: Samuel Rose-Carmack and Erin Boxt

Los Angeles - at 10 am:
Mar. 22: Schaliach Tzibbur: Joel Abramowitz; Reading Torah: Jaclyn Fromer; D'var Torah: Luann Tyzzer; Gabbai: Ethan Bair
Mar. 25: Schaliach Tzibbur: Joel Abramowitz and Cantor Kent; Reading Torah: Deena Sussman; Sermon: Stephanie Kramer; Gabbai: Jordi Schuster

New York - at 10 am unless otherwise noted:
Mar. 22: Rabbi: Daniel Bar Nachum; Cantor: Vicky Glickin; Reading Torah: Brian Immerman; Gabbai: Carle Gould; D'var Torah: Gavin Hirsch
Mar. 23 at 10:45 am: School of Education Practica: Jessica Ingram and Dena Wachtel Stein present "Hineni: Personal and Communal Obligation and Response."
Mar. 23 at 10:45 am: School of Education Practica: Yaron Kapitulnick presents "A New Model for Religious Schools."
Mar. 24 at 10:45 am: School of Sacred Music Senior Cantorial Recital: Galit Dadoun Cohen presents "Reinventing the Songs of the Sephardim," exploring the evolution of the Judeo-Spanish Song from folk to art song; from oral tradition to the concert stage.
Mar. 25: Reading Torah: Faryn Kates; Gabbai: Julia Rubin-Cadrain

Mar. 20 at 9:30 am: Leading Services: Rachel Kaplan; Dvar Torah: Ahuva Zaches
Mar. 22 at 9 am: Drasha: Avigail Etam; Shaliah zibur: Merav Kalush
Mar. 25 at 8:30 am: Leading Services: Carmela Blau; Dvar Torah: Amanda Greene More...
New at the HUC-JIR Judaica Gallery in New York
Celebrate special moments in your family's history this Passover with a custom-made L'Dor V'Dor matzo cover by Judaic textile artist Reeva Shaffer. Your precious family photos are duplicated in fabric form and are sewn into a uniquely designed matzo cover that can be appreciated by all generations. $250, plus shipping and handling. To purchase, please contact: 212-824-2218,

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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, 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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