Kesher Hadash Electives for Non–Davidson School Students

Get to Know Israel Outside the Beit Midrash

Studying in Israel? Looking for a way to supplement your experience and explore the realities and complexities of Israel and Israeli society in an educational framework? A Kesher Hadash elective may be the right fit for you.

Kesher Hadash 2015: January 5—May 10

Kesher Hadash is a full-time semester-in-Israel program of The Jewish Theological Seminary's William Davidson Graduate School of Jewish Education. This year, we are pleased to open certain units of the Kesher Hadash experience to students and friends of other institutions.

Each elective requires a different time commitment, enabling you to pick the one that best fits your interests and schedule. You may take more than one if you wish. The units will be held on varying dates between January and May 2015.

Unit 1: Arts and Culture as a Window into Israeli Society
Time commitment: 14 sessions of one and a half to two and a half hours each

This unit will expose participants to a variety of contemporary arts and culture in Israeli society. Through exploring these areas, students will gain insight into some of the key questions and dilemmas that Israeli society faces today, and consider how to use Israeli arts and culture in educational contexts back in North America.

  • On and Off the Beaten Track of Jerusalem's Art Scene, with Dr. Yaara Shteinhart-Moghadam of the David Yellin Academic College of Education
    Date TBD Four two-and-a-half-hour trips to Jerusalem and Tel Aviv art galleries and museums.
  • The Ma'aleh School of Television, Film & the Arts: Issues in Israeli Society as Seen Through Ma'aleh Movies, with Einat Kapach of Ma'aleh
    Date TBD
  • Using the Arts in Israel Education, with Robbie Gringras of Makom
    Cost: US$100

Unit 2: The Conflict with the Palestinians: Its Place in Israel Education and in Your Own Jewish Identity
Time commitment: two two-day overnight trips and six three-hour sessions

This unit, a unique collaboration between Kesher Hadash, Encounter, and Perspectives Israel, will comprise three core components:

  • Encounter Seminar
    Date TBD Two-day overnight program that offers participants the opportunity to hear diverse Palestinian narratives about the conflict and to experience home hospitality with a Palestinian host family.
    See for more information.
  • Perspectives Israel Seminar
    Date TBD Two-day overnight program that exposes participants to a variety of Israeli Jewish voices relating to the conflict with the Palestinians.
    See for more information.
  • Course with Dr. Daniel Moses, director of leadership programs for Seeds of Peace and a member of the Kesher Hadash faculty
    Dates TBD Six three-hour sessions that will give students the opportunity to analyze the pedagogy and vision of both Perspectives and Encounter, to reflect on their own relationship with the conflict, to learn about general educational approaches to teaching about conflict, and to create educational materials on the subject for their own future teaching in North American Jewish educational contexts.

Cost: 250 NIS paid directly to Perspectives Israel plus US$100 paid directly to Encounter plus US$100 paid directly to JTS Israel

Unit 3: Israeli Identity and Israeli Society
Time commitment: five half- to full-day seminars
Dates TBD (Thursdays, with the exception of the third one, which will be on a Monday or Tuesday)


  • Yad Vashem: The Shoah as a Window into Israeli Identity, with Dr. Rachel Korazim
  • The Demographics and Sociology of Jerusalem, with Dr. Elan Ezrachi
  • An Insight into the Haredi Communities of Israel, with Rabbi Yehoshua Pfeffer
  • Alma: The Secular Jewish Renaissance in Israel (field trip to Tel Aviv)
  • Strategic Issues in Israel-Diaspora Relations, with the Reut Institute (field trip to Tel Aviv)

Cost: US$150

To apply, or for more information, please email Dr. Alex Sinclair, director of Programs in Israel Education at The Davidson School, at Include the following details: name, address, telephone number, Israel program (if any) in which you will be enrolled in spring 2015, and Kesher Hadash unit(s) of interest.

Payments will be made to JTS in Israel. Further payment instructions will be given upon application.