In Talmud, in the section called Masechet Shabbat, Rava points out that there are six sets of questions a person is asked in the hour he or she is to be judged. The school’s vision of the ideal graduate grows directly from these Talmudic queries
Did you conduct your worldly affairs in a righteous manner? Did you take unfair advantage? Were you honest in business?
Our graduates engage in thoughtful acts of Tikkun Olam (world repair); understand that they are part of a larger plan, yet are essential to the completion of that plan through individual acts of loving kindness; and know that justice is created in the world by donations of personal time and material resources.
Our graduates understand that knowledge is for the sake of achieving wisdom, wisdom leads to peace, peace engenders a context for Tikkun Olam, and Tikkun creates an atmosphere of Godliness in our world.
Was lifelong learning a priority? Was it a regular part of one’s life? Did you fix a regular time to study?
Our graduates possess deep and integrated knowledge of Jewish tradition, values, and world civilization; recognize the relationship among all facets of human knowledge; and appreciate the interaction between the greatest minds of Jewish and general thought.
Our graduates love to learn and have mastered the reading, comprehension, and analytical skills to enable the pursuit of lifelong learning activities. Our graduates will strive for excellence in intellectual pursuits, personal health, artistic development. Graduates will comport themselves according to Jewish values and ideals of American democracy and will strive for high standards of moral character and behavior.
Did you engage yourself in the raising of children? This means not just in the sense of procreation, but were you part of the “village” that raised all of the community’s children? Did you become a part of all of the communities of all of our children?
Our graduates consider themselves “trans-Jews” or those who possess a full range of Jewish knowledge and skills, so as to be comfortable in any Jewish community anywhere in the world. When asked to lead a prayer minyan, our graduates can lead; when asked to explain Jewish holidays, texts, history, and philosophy, our graduates can explain. In essence, our graduates appreciate and respect all facets of Jewish life and can easily “transit” within the complex Jewish world.
Were you an optimist? Did you try to make things better by participating in acts of Tikkun Olam? Did you have faith in God and the goodness of the world? Did you work for peace in Israel and the world?
Our graduates achieve a sense of self-confidence, joy, and passion for life, based upon a deep understanding of Jewish tradition and knowledge of how that tradition creates personal meaning and inner peace. They support the State of Israel and appreciate Israel’s centrality in Jewish life and Jewish history.
Did you use wise judgment? Did you argue details with wisdom? Did you know when to let go of the unimportant? Did you separate the argument from the individual? Did you make a contribution of wisdom to the greater academic and world communities?
Our graduates know and apply critical thinking skills needed for analytic and synthetic thought. These include inductive and deductive reasoning; finding similarities and analogies; synthesizing information; assessing the costs and benefits of ideas; predicting short and long-term consequences; achieving insight- the awareness of self in relation to others, to moral problems, and to world issues. They can analyze their own thinking process to identify strengths and weaknesses and to adopt strategies for productive action based on the highest principles of moral and ethical thinking.
Our graduates gain admission to fine colleges and universities not only to enhance their own education and opportunities, but also as a means to enhance their ability to make a significant contribution to our local and national communities.
Did you understand and search for the deeper meaning and hidden meaning of life? Did you understand a word within a word or the thing within a thing?
Our graduates value their special gifts and understand their responsibility to use those gifts to uplift humanity. They maintain balance and perspective in life, thereby being able to determine that which is truly important and meaningful and that which will make a difference for future generations.