Evie Levy Rotstein, Ed.D., has been appointed Director of the New York School of Education at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR) by Rabbi David Ellenson, HUC-JIR President. Since 1961, the New York School of Education has bestowed the Master of Arts in Religious Education on nearly 200 Jewish educational leaders, who have gone on to lead the congregational schools and educational institutions and programs for the Reform Movement and the Jewish people throughout North America, Israel, and around the world.
Rabbi Shirley Idelson, Dean of the New York School, stated, “Dr. Rotstein brings a commitment to scholarship as well a depth of experience as a practitioner, she has clear vision and the ability to work collaboratively to make the vision we share for the school real. She is an extraordinary teacher. At this critical moment for the New York School of Education and the field of Jewish education more generally, I am thrilled that Dr. Rotstein will be assuming this position of leadership, for with her at the helm, I know our Education programs will continue to soar to ever greater heights."
Dr. Michael Zeldin, Professor of Jewish Education and Director of HUC-JIR’s Rhea Hirsch School of Education, added, “Dr. Rotstein is a talented Jewish educator and a pioneer in the field of professional development and Jewish education for interfaith families. I am thrilled that in her new role she will bring her considerable expertise to bear on our work at HUC-JIR. I look forward to her taking on greater responsibility as a key member of the extraordinary team of faculty and administrators we have at the College-Institute. I look forward to working with Dr. Rotstein and the rest of the team to bring greater collaboration and cooperation to all of our programs in Jewish education so that together we can prepare the next generation of Jewish educational leaders to question what is and imagine what can be in every corner of the field of Jewish education.”
Dr. Rotstein has served as the Director of the Leadership Institute: Shaping Congregational Leaders and Learners since the beginning of the project in 2004. A joint project of HUC-JIR and the William Davidson Graduate School of Jewish Education at the Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS), and fully funded by the UJA-Federation of New York, the Leadership Institute advances the leadership capacity, pedagogic skills, and Judaic knowledge of congregational school educators from all denominations in the New York, Long Island, Westchester and the greater metropolitan area.
Previously, Dr. Rotstein was a congregational school educator and developed programs for faculty learning, teen mentoring, and parent education. She began her career in Jewish education as a camp director for Young Judaea. She holds an M.A. in Foreign Language Education and a Doctorate in Jewish Education from The Jewish Theological Seminary. Her research interests include interfaith families, adolescent identity development, professional learning, and mentoring. She has been teaching courses and advising students in HUC-JIR’s New York School of Education for the last seven years and consults to congregations on various change projects. She works closely with the Jewish Education Project in New York and the Experiment in Congregational Education to design innovation in models of congregational learning.She has published articles and chapters in What We Now Know About Jewish Education (2008), The Gender Gap (2008), and in theInternational Handbook of Jewish Education (2011).
HUC-JIR’s New York School of Education and the Rhea Hirsch School of Education at HUC-JIR in Los Angeles provide a broad range of graduate and certificate programs for Jewish educators, including the M.A. in Religious Education/Jewish Education; the Executive M.A. Program in Jewish Education; DeLeT – Day School Leadership Through Teaching; and the Certificate in Jewish Education for Adolescents and Emerging Adults. HUC-JIR’s Schools of Education also offer research and enrichment projects, including the Experiment in Congregational Education, which is working with synagogues throughout North America to reimagine Jewish learning across the generations in, and the Jewish Early Childhood Educators Leadership institute, a joint project with the Jewish Theological Seminary guided by the Bank Street College of Education. In the coming years, the Schools of Education will be moving towards a more integrated model for all of HUC-JIR’s education programs, providing opportunities for greater synergies among the various programs so that they can play an even more significant role in transforming the landscape of Jewish education to meet the demands of the extraordinary times in which we live.
Dr. Rotstein succeeds Professor Jo Kay, who served as Director of the New York School of Education since 2001, on July 1.