Sam Spencer

Woodbridge, Connecticut

Majors: Talmud and Political Science (tentative)   Interests: Studying the way diverse people interact in common society, reading the Tanakh, and government and public policy. All of these speak to my desire to understand what drives the daily rhythm of human interaction.  

Extracurricular/Cocurricular Activities: I've become regularly involved with Columbia/Barnard Hillel, and work as a Hebrew teacher at the Society for the Advancement of Judaism once a week, at an after-school program for junior high students.  

Favorite Things About List College: I am grateful for the ability to ask questions freely. I'm free to verbalize my concerns even if they're unconventional or unlike a professor or rabbi's views. Another favorite aspect of JTS is the personal connections I have established with faculty members. I have the sense that the rabbis and professors here have a genuine love of assisting students' growth.  

Favorite Things About Living in New York City: Being here allows me to better understand my role within the broader community. One of the greatest appeals is to journey through different neighborhoods. I like to think of the city as my classroom, and all the different people as textbooks. Every person has a different story. Living in NYC opens my mind to new ideas in the traditional classroom, just as I take lessons from campus to my daily living in the city.  

Best Class at List College: My current Talmud class with Rabbi Joel Roth has been the most enlightening thus far. Though it's my first classroom-style Talmud study ever, I'm free to apply myself sincerely to discussions in an open-minded environment. The diversity of the Talmud's pages fascinates me-from the different minds across several generations and communities engaging in a common discourse to the spectrum of topics so wide, I find the lessons on supply and demand in my economics lecture informing discussions of the sugya. Connections like this define the List College experience.  

One day I want to . . . be a community leader, perhaps in government. I intend to join the IDF and make aliyah after graduation. I want to foster alliances among people currently in conflict, using the lessons bridging statesmanship and religious morality gained through my List College experience.