Day of Learning at HUC-JIR/LA

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

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. Two members of the HUC-JIR faculty, Sharon Gillerman and Bruce Phillips, responded to the words and message of the Congressman.  Please click here for the live video of the proceedings.

Following this opening ceremony, Sue Hochman introduced our incoming dean, Dr. Joshua Holo.  Drawing from stories taken from his field of medieval studies, Josh provided a beautiful vision for the future of this campus.

In the course of the afternoon, four of HUC-JIR’s younger colleagues taught classes for the attendees:
Tali Zelkowicz:  Kiddush Cups on Trampolines? Exploring Durability and Fragility in American Jewish Educational Culture
Sarah Benor:  jPod: Jewish Identity in the 21st Century
Leah Hochman:  What Do Jews Think?
Bea Lawrence:  Prophets and Madmen: Prophecy in the Bible

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 (Class of 2006, SJCS), who chaired this provocative and engaging session. The students were Julie Malkin (SJCS), Bradley Cohen (Rhea Hirsch), Greg Weisman (Rabbinic School), and Libby Clearfield (DeLeT).

The day was planned by an extraordinary committee of Overseers and alums, including Paul Lippe (Chair), Terry Pullan, Merle Weiner, Hal Reichwald, Jules Kabat, Rochelle Ginsburg, Rabbi Steve Einstein, Rabbi Alan Henkin, and Gosia Szymanska.  Adam Greenwald staffed this activity.


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 men and women for service to 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, 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. www.huc.edu