HUC-JIR Awarded Grants from Reform Women’s Movement to fund student scholarships and Panken Professorships - Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion
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HUC-JIR Awarded Grants from Reform Women’s Movement to fund student scholarships and Panken Professorships

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Monday, September 9, 2019

HUC-JIR is honored to receive two grants from Women of Reform Judaism (WRJ), through its YES (Youth, Education, & Special Projects) Fund. WRJ grants provide for student scholarships and awards at each of HUC-JIR’s four campuses, Cincinnati, Jerusalem, Los Angeles, and New York. More than 90% of HUC-JIR students receive some form of scholarship assistance.

“WRJ has supported HUC-JIR since our inception over 100 years ago,” said Rabbi Marla J. Feldman ‘85, WRJ Executive Director. “From building the student dormitory in Cincinnati during the 1920’s to today’s support of the Israeli Rabbinical Program, scholarships for students at every campus, and numerous awards for students and faculty, WRJ has been a proud partner of the College-Institute in supporting the next generation of Reform Jewish professionals.”

An additional grant was given to help fund the Rabbi Aaron D. Panken z”l Professorships, established in memory of Rabbi Aaron D. Panken, President of HUC-JIR from 2014-2018.

“In addition to our long-standing support of students at HUC-JIR, this year we are providing additional funds in memory of Rabbi Aaron Panken, z”l, Ph.D. We deeply mourn his loss and were gratified by the opportunity to memorialize him by supporting the professorships that bear his name,” said Susan C. Bass, WRJ President.

The inaugural cohort of Panken Professorships have been carefully selected and the designated faculty members and their disciplines best reflect the values that made Rabbi Panken a singular leader for HUC-JIR and the Reform Movement. The named professors represent both emerging scholars at the outset of promising careers and accomplished members of HUC-JIR’s renowned faculty, all of whom are committed to serious scholarship and animated by a love of teaching and a commitment to the nurturing of Reform Jewish leaders.

Women of Reform Judaism (WRJ), founded in 1913, is the women’s affiliate of the Union for Reform Judaism, the central body of Reform Judaism in North America. WRJ represents tens of thousands of women in hundreds of women’s groups, strengthening the voice of women worldwide and empowering them to create caring communities, nurture congregations, cultivate personal and spiritual growth, and advocate for and promote progressive Jewish values.

Founded in 1875, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion is North America's leading institution of higher Jewish education and the academic, spiritual, and professional leadership development center of Reform Judaism. HUC-JIR educates leaders to serve North American and world Jewry as rabbis, cantors, educators, and nonprofit management professionals, and offers graduate programs to scholars and clergy of all faiths. With centers of learning in Cincinnati, Jerusalem, Los Angeles, and New York, HUC-JIR's scholarly resources comprise the renowned Klau Library, The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives, museums, research institutes and centers, and academic publications. In partnership with the Union for Reform Judaism and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, HUC-JIR sustains the Reform Movement's congregations and professional and lay leaders. HUC-JIR's campuses invite the community to cultural and educational programs illuminating Jewish heritage and fostering interfaith and multiethnic understanding.