20 May 2008

First Annual Weinstein Award Luncheon

Rabbi Angel speakingToday, Yeshivat Chovevei Torah held its first ever Irving S. Weinstein Memorial Award and Lecture for the Advancement of Interdenominational Cooperation. Rabbi Yamin Levy was the master of ceremonies for the program, opening it up and speaking throughout. The keynote speaker was Rabbi Marc Angel, who spoke on "Orthodox and Non-Orthodox Jewish Communities; Can We Learn From Each Other?"
Next up was Ezra Levin, who helped in dispersing the funds for the scholarship spoke about the origin of the fund:
Ezra Levin speaking
"He expressed, in the presence of myself, a financial adviser and someone else, the notion that he was really upset by the divisions among the Jews who were fighting always and wanted to do something to seek accord among the Jewish people. He was not interested in imposing a uniformity; he respected diversity."
The award, according to the pamphlet printed up by the school, is
The Irving S. Weinstein Memorial Award for the Advancement of Interdenominational Cooperation is a scholarship that is awarded once a year to one Yeshivat Chovevei Torah rabbinical student and one alumnus for their excellence in building bridges with other Jewish denominations. The scholarship was created in memory of Irving S. Weinstein.*
Then the award presentation began, with the award going to an alumnus going to Seth Braunstein (Class of 2006), who then spoke upon having received his award. Then Rabbi Dov Linzer spoke. Following him, the student awarded was Daniel Braune-Friedman, who then spoke.


According to the pamphlet printed by YCT:
Irving S. Weinstein was raised in Brooklyn and served in the US Army in Georgia, where he worked as an assistant electrician. Upon returning to civilian life he developed an electrical contracting business, which he ultimately sold after transferring a portion of it to a charitable remainder trust. Irving was an avid golfer and loved dogs. He expressed the wish that the trust proceeds might be used to promote accord among people of the Jewish faith.

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15 May 2008

Katie Light Visits for Q & A on Her Master's Thesis

Katie Light was here today during lunchtime to field any questions and to discuss her recently finished masters thesis at Brandeis University, entitled "Inside Out, Outside In: Yeshivat Chovevei Torah’s Open Orthodoxy Transmitted, Absorbed, and Applied."
In her thesis, she wrote that she
studied Yeshivat Chovevei Torah Rabbinical School because I felt that it needed to be done for to enhance the field of sociology of religion and for the sake of the American Jewish community. I felt an obligation as a student of social science to use my entrée and innate interest to conduct this research. (p. 2)
In her visit, she said that it's especially true that the academic community does not understand what's going on here. She also said that people should know what's going on here because it is impressive. Also, no previous research has been done on YCT, she said.
She wrote that she
studied YCT through the lens of sociology of religion, combining, in particular, Robert Wuthnow’s concept of public religion with Erving Goffman’s theories on front and back stages (explained in the theory section.) The general field and the theories provided a framework through which to understand the people in the yeshiva, their education, and how the two work in tandem to first develop in private and then apply in public YCT’s guiding philosophy of Open Orthodoxy. Theories of clergy education explicated by Charles Foster and his colleagues shed light on the processes of teaching and learning in theological seminaries. (p. 1)

13 May 2008

Rabbi Linzer Awarded Fellowship

Yesterday, the Avi Chai Foundation announced their first set of fellows yesterday, including Rabbi Dov Linzer, the head of YCT. According to Avi Chai's website: "His grant proposal is on the creation of a rabbinical school curriculum for educators, allowing the Orthodox rabbinate to gain enhanced pedagogical training, so that they are better trained to be Day School educators."

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02 May 2008

Yemei Iyun On Bible and Jewish Thought 2008

YCT has announced its sixth annual Yemei Iyun on Bible & Jewish thought to take place this summer. Set to take place Sunday 29 June-Tuesday 1 July, it will be taking place at the Ramaz upper school (60 East 78th Street, New York City) (not where it has been for the last several years in New Jersey). The registration form and online registration are available.
The yemei iyun program being held in cooperation with Beit Morasha of Jerusalem, Center for Modern Torah Leadership, David Cardozo Academy, Lookstein Center for Jewish Education, MATAN, RAMAZ, Yeshivat Hamivtar, and Yeshivat Maale Gilboa.

(Related: Yemei Iyun 2007, Yemei Iyun 2006)

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