Tikvah Institute For Yeshiva Men 2017

For a fourth summer, I will be leading the Tikvah Fund’s special summer resident program for yeshiva men. This program presents a wonderful opportunity for men between the ages of 20-35 who have had strong learning experience in mainstream yeshivos. In the course of five days, they will be able to explore hashkafic issues that the rest of the year does not allow; to find serious stimulation in political thought that intersects with the needs of the Torah community; to be exposed to personalities who will try to tease out maximum commitment to the communal needs of the Torah world down the line; and to spend time with other bright and motivated bnei Torah who share similar interests.

Each year in the past, we assembled a stellar faculty of Torah and secular thinkers. This year’s Torah faculyt will include Rav Ahron Lopiansky, R. Aaron Kotler, Jonathan Rosenblum, and myself. Eric Cohen, Yuval Levin and Robert George will immerse the students in high-caliber study of the underpinnings of Western political thought, and their application to Jewish interests in the present and future.

Participation in the program is competitive. In the past, the ratio of applicants to positions was about 3 to 1. Application is through our website, and closes on May 25. Participation in the program, which runs during bein hazemanin from Aug. 14-18 in Manhattan, requires critical thinking, reading, and active discussion in a group setting. Participants’ fees and expenses (travel, Manhattan hotel, all meals) are covered by the program, and they receive a stipend for taking part in it.

The incredible events of the past year, particularly on the American political scene, present new challenges and new opportunities for the Torah community. We are looking at greater influence of Torah Jews than with the previous administration, just as the role of religion in American life in general is shrinking. The presenters in the Tikvah Institute include individuals particularly well-equipped to examine the issues, as well as to plant them firmly in the fertile soil of Torah thought.

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