The 149th Class of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion Steps Up to Meet the Moment

June 10, 2024

FINDING JOY AND HOPE IN CHALLENGING TIMES

The next generation of Jewish leaders, educators, and clergy embrace the charge to change the world.

During this month of celebrations, HUC-JIR’s alumni honorees, graduates, and ordinees have grappled with the conflicting emotions of joy in their accomplishments and sadness and fear at what is unfolding in Israel and across America. As they move on to their next chapters, these milestone ceremonies and celebrations have reinforced the knowledge that our texts and traditions are enduring, leading us through contradictions to something new and greater.

Andrew Rehfeld speaking at graduation

Graduation

At the core of the HUC-JIR experience is a deep commitment to text, to learning, and to a dialogue between the past and the present that paves the path to the future.

“Our world needs your collective guidance, wisdom, and vision more than ever, ” said President Andrew Rehfeld, Ph.D.
Read more about New York Graduation

Marcie Zelikow of HUC-JIR’s Board of Governors stated, “Now, more than ever, we’ll need leaders like you to take us forward into a new future.”
Read more about Los Angeles Graduation

“Our purpose today,” said Rabbi Jonathan L. Hecht ’87, Ph.D., Dean, Cincinnati Campus, “is to recognize the achievements of our students and the work of scholars.”
Read More about Cincinnati Graduation

Ordinees and staff at HUC ordination in Cincinnati

Ordination

Whether through words or through song, in congregations, organizations, or spaces yet to be invented that they themselves will shape, our newest clergy are ready to lead.

“We need rabbis and cantors who can bring people together,” said Provost Rabbi Andrea L. Weiss ’93, Ph.D.
Read More about New York Ordination

“You are poised to contribute to the tapestry of the enduring, dynamic, and exciting story of our people,” said Janice Kamenir-Reznik ’75.
Read More about Los Angeles Ordination

“The Jewish communities you lead will need your intellectual leadership,” Ordination Speaker Rabbi Leon A. Morris ’97 told ordinees.
Read More about Cincinnati Ordination

In November, HUC-JIR demonstrated the vitality of the Reform Movement in Israel with the ordination of three new Israeli rabbis.
Read more about our Ordination in Israel