Talk:American Jewish University

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Early edits[edit]

So I went ahead and created the page. Most of the information I culled from the UJ's website, but they don't publish certain data there, such as the number of students enrolled. I left some ???? marks in the page where I couldn't find some data. If anyone can help out there, or in any other way, please feel free to do so. Makaristos 02:14, 5 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I did what I could do to add some additional information, including the standard american university infobox template. Streltzer 20:10, 19 August 2006 (UTC)
I also uploaded the logo. I found several different versions (including multiple colors) so perhaps someone can clarify if this is the most-current school logo. Streltzer 20:10, 19 August 2006 (UTC)

I have additional and accurate information on American Jewish University and I can also get you the most recent logo. Here is the information in categories. 01-08-14 Rensin.

AMERICAN JEWISH UNIVERSITY American Jewish University (AJU) is a private, nonprofit university with two campuses located in Los Angeles, California. The university maintains a faculty-to-student ratio of seven to one. The individual attention AJU students receive from their professors is one of several reasons why the school has been repeatedly acknowledged by the editors of The Princeton Review as one of the Best Western Colleges. The University places an emphasis on ethics and leadership with students and also provides the broader community with diverse educational experiences.

HISTORY American Jewish University is the outcome of the 2007 union of Brandeis-Bardin Institute (BBI) and the University of Judaism (UJ). In 1947, the University of Judaism was founded in Los Angeles as the vision of Dr. Mordecai Kaplan, the author of Judaism as a Civilization, who advocated the creation of an educational institution incorporating diverse elements of Jewish civilization and culture under one roof. To carry out his dream, he received the support of the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York and the then Bureau of Jewish Education of Los Angeles - currently BJE. Six years earlier, Brandeis Camp Institute (BCI) -currently the Marilyn & Sigi Ziering Brandeis Collegiate Institute - was founded by Dr. Shlomo Bardin to safeguard against assimilation of young American Jews by making “the great ethical heritage of Judaism” relevant to them. BCI was named to honor America’s first Jewish Supreme Court Justice, Louis D. Brandeis, who was instrumental as the visionary and primary funder of Dr. Bardin’s initial programmatic endeavor. BBI was located for brief periods of time in Amherst, NH, Winterdale, PA and Hendersonville, NC before finding its home in 1947 in Simi Valley, California. The UJ was originally housed in the vacant Sinai Temple building and relocated to a number of Los Angeles sites before moving to the Familian Campus in Bel Air in 1977. Thanks to the foresight and leadership of the founding President, Dr. Simon Greenberg, his successor, Dr. David Lieber, and first Chairman of the Board, Dore Schary, the UJ became well known early on for its teacher training and adult education programs. In 1979 the UJ began the Graduate School of Nonprofit Management, an additional program to further the vision of Mordecai Kaplan. In 1982 a four-year liberal arts college (College of Arts and Sciences) was launched. These in turn were followed in 1986 by the establishment of the Graduate Center for Education and in 1996 by the creation of the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies, the first independent ordaining rabbinical school in the western United States. In 1947, BCI purchased and eventually moved to 2,200 acres of land in what is now called Simi Valley. During the fifties, Max Helfman and Raikin Ben-Ari elevated the realm of creative music and drama and the BCI model was adapted for adults, launching the concept of adult weekend retreats known as House of the Book Weekends. A residential summer camp for children 8-16, Camp Alonim, opened in 1953, soon followed by the expanded use of facilities for non-summer activities for youth. In 1960 the House of the Book Association was organized by couples who had participated in weekend programs, leading to the 1970 groundbreaking of the House of the Book, a mountaintop facility used for large group presentations and celebrations.

Impressed and inspired by Dr. Bardin’s vision and educational philosophy, neighbor James Arness (star of “Gunsmoke”) gifted his entire ranch to the institute, increasing BCI’s acreage by 40% and making it the largest parcel of land owned by a Jewish institution outside the State of Israel.  In 1977, the BCI Board of Directors changed the name of the Institute to Brandeis-Bardin Institute (BBI) in honor of the late founder.  

The two institutions united in 2007, establishing American Jewish University.

TWO CAMPUSES The Familian Campus is characterized by contemporary open-air architecture and grassy, tree-lined walkways. It is set on 27 acres in Bel Air, one of the most desirable residential neighborhoods in L.A., and is within a 30 minute drive to Hollywood, the beaches and other major L.A. sites. Located on a rustic hilltop, the scenic campus is host to a wide variety of events including conferences, retreats, business gatherings, performances and life cycle events.

The Brandeis-Bardin Campus is located on 2,700 acres in the Santa Susana Mountains of Metropolitan Los Angeles’s Simi Valley. It is a working ranch with hiking trails, camping areas, swimming pools, gardens and wildlife and provides the experiential nature lab for AJU students. Visitors can see horses running down the hillside, wild cattle grazing, and peacocks wandering through the campus. Each summer, the campus welcomes 800 youths, ages 8-16, to Camp Alonim, and scores of young adults to the Marilyn & Sigi Ziering Brandeis Collegiate Institute program. This campus is also host to a wide variety of events including weddings, performances, business gatherings, retreats and conferences.

ACADEMIC SCHOOLS The College of Arts & Sciences emphasizes individualized attention to its students and maintains a 7:1 student-faculty ratio. Degrees are offered by the following departments: Behavioral Sciences; Bioethics and Natural Sciences; Business; Jewish Studies; Liberal Studies; Literature, Communication and Media; and Political Science. Each student has a department chair act as their advisor. The University offers two Dual Degree programs: the BA/MBA in Nonprofit Management, and the BA/MAED in Education. Both of these programs allow qualified upper-classmen to take graduate-level courses during their undergraduate years. This dual-level approach allows qualified students to graduate with Bachelor and Master degrees within five years. All students participate in the multi-disciplinary Core Curriculum Program and are required to earn a minimum of 120 academic credits to graduate. Credits are earned in Core requirements, the major and electives. The College welcomes transfer students; a maximum of 70 credits are accepted from two-year colleges, while there is no maximum on the credits that may be accepted from an accredited four-year college. The minimum residency requirement for graduation is 45 units, 15 of which must be in the major. In addition to classroom studies, students may become involved in a range of co-curricular activities. Among them are: participating in the facilitation of the annual city-wide Prejudice Awareness summit or the intercollegiate Model United Nations; producing the college's digital newspaper; performing in the annual College Theatre Production and/or the Literary/Arts event, Cymbals Underground; and partnering with the Arava Institute for Desert Research through AJU’s Business Department. Students in the College of Arts & Sciences also have available to them internships and mentor programs designed to meet individual student’s interests. Partnering organizations that provide internship and mentoring opportunities are: Cedars Sinai Medical Center, Dreamworks, AIPAC, Universal Studios and the Shoah Foundation. Upon graduation, ninety-five percent of AJU students continuing on to graduate school are accepted by the school of their choice. The Graduate School of Nonprofit Management focuses on the business of running a nonprofit organization: the strategic planning, marketing, fundraising, accounting and innovative thinking necessary to manage and create change within the nonprofit world. The program allows students to continue to work during the day while attending classes in the evening. It is the only MBA program in the western United States solely focused on the nonprofit sector. The Graduate Center for Jewish Education has a curriculum built upon a synthesis of four pillars: 1) Fundamental and cutting edge theories and methods of pedagogy, curriculum design and administration 2) Conceptual frameworks of philosophy, psychology and sociology of education 3) Reflective Practice and Inquiry linked to fieldwork and 4) Judaic Studies through scholarly and educators’ lenses. The Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies is a five-year rabbinical school that values rigorous scholarship as well as spirituality. In an atmosphere that places great emphasis on personalized teaching, students study Jewish texts and traditions, feel the presence of God in their lives and assume the ever-expanding roles and responsibilities offered to those entering the Conservative rabbinate of the 21st century.

GAP YEAR PROGRAMS American Jewish University College in Israel (AJUCI) is an accredited program that works with both Year Course and Aardvark Israel to provide academically qualified gap year participants an opportunity to earn academic credit. Through AJUCI, Course and Aardvark Israel participants can earn nearly a year’s worth of college credit while studying, volunteering, and experiencing Israel.

RESIDENTIAL FACILITIES American Jewish University considers residential life, especially the undergraduate residence hall experience, to be an integral part of its educational mission. This stems from AJU’s principle that the academic and social dimensions of university life should be integrated. There are four residence halls, each featuring 24 modern and spacious rooms. Additionally, the Residence Life Complex features sixteen 1 Bed/1 Bath apartments and four 2 Bed/1 Bath apartments. All dorms and apartments are located in a park-like setting adjacent to main the campus. Every residence hall room and apartment is fully furnished, each including a private bath and air-conditioning, and is cable and Wi-Fi ready. The Residence Life Complex is equipped with a laundry facility, study lounges, computer centers, kitchens, an outdoor basketball court and a fully-stocked gym.

YOUTH PROGRAMS Camp Alonim is an overnight camp housed at AJU’s Brandeis-Bardin campus for children ages 8-16. The camp strives to instill a love for Jewish culture, tradition and community by exposing campers to a multitude of ways to be Jewish. Camp Alonim is a complete immersion experience, where Jewish values are lived and modeled by the staff and Jewish culture is brought to life through song, dance and experiential education. The Marilyn and Sigi Ziering Brandeis Collegiate Institute (BCI) offers young adults ages 18-26, an intensive experience in Jewish learning, culture and community. BCI is a 26-day exploration of self and Judaism, set in the context of the American recreational summer camp, bringing together young Jews from around the world with some of Judaism’s most compelling, talented scholars and artists to experience the multifaceted aspects of Jewish life.

COMMUNITY PROGRAMS The Whizin Center for Continuing Education (WCCE) is the largest Jewish continuing education program in the country and offers courses in Jewish studies, Hebrew language, fine arts and personal growth, as well as seminars, all-day institutes, public lectures and residential study experiences. Jewish Television Network (JTN) joined American Jewish University in 2010 to create a third and virtual campus complete with extensive academic and community resources in addition to a community broadband network featuring a mix of news, entertainment and culture.

THINK TANKS American Jewish University is home to two think tanks. The Sigi Ziering Institute (SZI) explores the ethical and religious implications of the Holocaust and challenges our understanding of divinity, humanity, responsibility and mankind’s capacity to do evil. The Center for Israel Studies (CIS) promotes greater understanding of the history, culture and policies of the State of Israel through education, media outreach and policy studies/reviews.

COMMUNITY RESOURCES The Bel and Jack Ostrow Academic Library is designed to meet the needs of the University's faculty and students, as well as scholars conducting research in all fields of Jewish culture and civilization. Members of the general public are invited to use the Library’s materials free of charge. With approximately 110,000 print volumes, the library's collections have grown consistently through endowments, gifts of major private collections and an ongoing acquisition program.

The Burton Sperber Jewish Community Library sponsors programs for children and adults alike, including Jewish holiday celebrations, Sunday story hours, and regular lectures by prominent Jewish authors. The library is the successor of the Jewish Community Library formerly housed at the Los Angeles Jewish Federation. It also features a special collection on the history of Jews in magic.

Lowy-Winkler Family Rare Book Center has impressive holdings in this specially acclimatized center. The Maslan Bible Collection includes hundreds of rare bibles dating back to the inception of printing in the 15th century.

Phoebe & Werner Frank Family Learning Center houses special collections on Jewish genealogy, Jewish historical works and Yizkor books commemorating communities destroyed in the Holocaust. The Frank Center is a place for families to explore their roots and experience the diverse communities of the Jewish world.

The David Alan Shapiro Memorial Synagogue Center, dedicated in his memory, is available for prayer services and lifecycle events and serves as a multipurpose center for classes and meetings.

The Sondra and Marvin Smalley Sculpture Garden, dedicated in 1981, features works by Aldo Casanova, Fletcher Benton, George Rickey, Jenny Holzer and Sir Anthony Caro and is one of Los Angeles’s outstanding sculpture gardens. It hosts a growing collection by preeminent artists from the second half of the 20th century. Wendie’s Garden, in memory of Wendie Jo Sperber, is a succulent garden punctuating the west side of the Familian campus.

Here is the Mission Statement and I will get the new logo asap. Please let me know if you would like photos of the campus, or faculty...etc. i have access to that as well. 01-08-14 Rensin.

Mission Statement LEARNING AND SCHOLARSHIP לימוד ולמדנות We believe in the principle of Torah Li’Sh’mah – learning as an intellectual and inspirational endeavor that embraces both academic scholarship and the efforts of all Jews to explore their shared heritage through the formal and informal study of Judaism and the other great civilizations of the world.

CULTURE תרבות We acknowledge that Judaism is a flourishing civilization with a culture that is fundamental to modern Jewish identity. We strive to advance that culture by encouraging artistic endeavor in all of its many forms.

ETHICS קדושה We recognize that ethics is the language of Judaism and its most important link to the world at large.

LEADERSHIP מנהיגות We understand that the future of Jewish life depends on the careful preparation of dedicated and impassioned individuals who are called to leadership.

PEOPLEHOOD עם We are a pluralistic institution that embraces diversity within Judaism and values the contributions of all groups to the growth of Jewish civilization.

AJU Merger[edit]

Began converting page to American Jewish University, the new institution formed from American Jewish University and Brandeis-Bardin Institute. Yet to do: merge in Brandeis-Bardin Institute article. --joeOnSunset 03:43, 7 August 2007 (UTC)

Jewish, non-denominational[edit]

This sounds bizarre to me, although I don't know if it is a normal thing in the USA. Does this mean something like that the place has programs for Jewish studies, but anyone can apply there? 2001:14BA:27F6:AC00:7C38:31DF:F67D:C451 (talk) 08:09, 11 December 2015 (UTC)

My understanding (yes, I'm an American) is that the University is not affiliated with any of the three primary "denominations" in the USA; Reform, Conservative, Orthodox. Take a look at the material above, especially the Mission Statement. Application and admission is likely another matter. Pjefts (talk) 15:31, 12 December 2015 (UTC)