The leader in pluralistic education.
At the heart of the Academy’s work are programs leading to ordination as Rav U-moreh/morah BeYisrael (Rabbi and Teacher in Israel), and Hazzan U-Moreh/Morah BeYisrael (Hazzan/Cantor and Teacher in Israel). These two programs offer depth, rigor and integrity as they embrace academic scholarship, traditional Jewish study, ethical training, professional skills and spiritual preparation. The structure of AJR is designed to support students through the years of formation and study, culminating in ordination.
The atmosphere, described by one student as a community of loving learners, is fostered by students, faculty, and administration revolves around the traditional values of ahavat Torah (love of Torah), ahavat Yisrael (love of the people Israel), kavod laTorah (honor and respect for Torah), and ahavat HaShem (love of God).
The Jewish world is changing rapidly, and with a pluralistic trans-denominational focus, AJR prepares its students for the realities of professional Jewish service and leadership – be it in a congregation, a chaplaincy, as an educator or administrator.
The sequence of courses in professional skills will equip rabbis and cantors alike to meet the challenges inherent in every field of the contemporary rabbinate and cantorate. Counseling classes develop the ability to listen and respond carefully, and also to appreciate when an expert therapist should become involved. Through sequence courses in education and communication, students learn to teach and “preach” in a manner that is responsible to the values of Torah, and also appreciative of the realities of contemporary Jewish life. Courses in contemporary liturgy and congregational dynamics begin to train our graduates in the process of transformational change. They will be able to help a congregation or agency develop a vision for the future, and to begin the process that will actualize this vision.
There may be stages in this process of visioning and transformation that require expert help and consulting; the faculty of AJR are always available to offer guidance to students and graduates, and are also available as consultants and visiting teachers to congregations. In partnership with congregational leadership, the Academy and its ordinees are active in building vibrant and compelling communities for the future.