Newsletter 2020 - 2021 - Page 4

A Word from the CEO and Academic Dean

Irecently came across a photo that is one that always touches me . It ’ s a photo from 1951 of the first meeting of Israeli pioneers meeting on the dunes where Tel Aviv was born . The photo is fascinating . A group of people standing on empty dunes only 70 years ago , while we know students need to be renaissance people , and that their education needs include not only STEM ( science , technology , engineering , math ), but actually , STEAM ( science , technology , engineering , the arts , math .) This expansive education allows them to lead the full Jewish community , to reach people where they are , and to be a force for moral literacy in society .

the tremendous metropolis that Tel Aviv is now . As I looked at the scene I thought about what it means to be a pioneer , and what it means to stand on the shoulders of pioneers .
This year , at AJR we celebrated our 65th anniversary . We too started with a group of people with a vision for an institution dedicated to klal yisrael , the whole Jewish community , and a willingness to work hard , to think creatively , and to actualize their sense of what clergy training could mean .
Just as Tel Aviv is now a thriving metropolis , AJR is now a thriving institution of higher learning . Our M . A . program brings together a deep understanding of sacred text and an appreciation of the contemporary Jewish community . Our clergy training is creative , academically rigorous , spiritually deep , and personally meaningful . Our students learn sacred text , Hebrew , history , philosophy , pastoral skills , and more . But at the same time , they take courses in the arts and in science . You could say that we understand that our
AJR has experienced exponential growth over the past 65 years , especially in the last five years . We know that we are standing on the shoulders of pioneers as we grow . But we also know , just as those early pioneers did , that our goal is not to just enjoy the growth , but , to continue to develop and expand by creating new programs , bringing in new students , enhancing our curriculum , and forming new relationships with individuals and institutions in the Jewish community .
We invite you to get to know us better . Just this year , for example , in addition to our curricular work , communal building , and varied communal programming , we are working on areas as varied as bringing science into clergy education , working with Christian seminaries to help Christian seminarians work with the Jewish community , furthering our sacred arts curriculum by expanding on our work in studying text through movement and circus arts , and developing courses for ASL interpreters and Deaf lay leaders to give them enhanced understanding of Jewish prayer , which they can pass on to their communities .
Join us , and be a part of the future of Jewish leadership . Partner with us in our growth , in our vision , and in building the Jewish future .
2 Dr . Ora Horn Prouser
AJR NEWSLETTER