I chose HUC-JIR because the history of the Bible and Ancient Near Eastern
program is renowned in the academic world,”
says Michael Lyons, who came
with a Master of Divinity from Southern Theological Seminary.
I also came
because of the school’s historical emphasis on Christians and Jews studying
together, learning from each other, and challenging each other to grow in our
understanding of the Bible and living,”
Lyons values his daily interaction with rabbinical students. “They offer a fresh
and new perspective for me in our classes together. Their connection to the rich
history of Jewish studies brings about a helpful influence on my own studies.”
Furthermore, the rabbinical seminary setting “helps remind me that my studies
should not be done in a vacuum hidden within the ivory walls of academia. The
seminary setting brings with it a constant awareness that people matter. It en-
courages my studies to aim for understanding the Bible better so that people
can know God better.”
After completing his Ph.D., Lyons hopes to teach and train pastors in biblical
languages at a seminary, helping them understand the many ancient contours
that shaped the Bible, and plans to serve as a pastor himself. “I believe the Bible
can transform lives, and my time in the Ph.D. program will further enhance my
abilities to bring the Bible to people and see their lives change for the better.”
Michael C. Lyons
Graduate Studies Student/Cincinnati
Jewish Nonprofit Management
f anyone understands our world without borders, it’s Aaron Gorodzin-
sky. This Mexico City-native worked on Israeli advocacy in Jerusalem
before coming to Los Angeles to study for a master’s degree at HUC-JIR’s
School of Jewish Nonprofit Management.
And when the first-year student started an internship with The Jewish
Federation of Greater Los Angeles, what was his first task? Working on
a project with global implications, a community mission to Israel that
drew 400 people.
We were part of the largest Los Angeles mission ever,” he says. “It’s
really rewarding to know that everything paid off in the end.”
His twice-a-week internship, in which he sits in on Jewish Federation Valley
Alliance staff meetings and gets involved in fundraising work, has given
him more than an insider’s look at the nonprofit world. It’s also given him
insight into leadership styles. “That has been inspiring to me,” Gorodzin-
In order to be a good leader, you have to lead by example.”
That’s a lesson that transcends borders too.
Jewish Nonprofit Management student Aaron Gorodzinsky of Mexico City brings a global sense
of Jewish peoplehood to his studies and internship at the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles.
Ph.D. student Michael Lyons conducts research in the Cuneiform Studies Room in the Klau Library, Cincinnati.