By Linda Rich
In any city with a large Jewish population and a few good universities, you’ll find abundant opportunities for adult Jewish education. That is, if you know where to look for them. Unfortunately, many are well-kept secrets, all too often featuring top notch speakers addressing half-empty rooms. It can be easier to find longer classes or seminars, but these don’t necessarily mesh with our schedules or commitments. If we only knew about all the one-off lectures, panel discussions, book talks and conferences covering a broad range of subjects, often at minimal cost.
Those in NYC can now choose from a wide variety of year-round offerings, thanks to Wandering Jews and Limmud NY. Each month we provide a free curated listing of some of the best lectures and conferences chosen from a wide variety of sources. Subscribers and those who visit the website can access information on these local events, with links to registration. Most use the service to identify programs to attend, while some just like to keep up with current issues, new books, and recent research.
Programs cover a wide range of topics: from Jewish history, literature, Israel, and anti-Semitism, to Torah, Talmud, and Jewish law, from kabbalah to comedy to cooking, and more. Some programs offer live streaming, and many can be accessed afterwards on the provider’s website.
In NYC, annual highlights of the adult Jewish learning calendar include the Global Day of Jewish Learning (Nov 12 this year) and Tikkun Leil Shavuot at the Manhattan JCC. While it’s easier to keep track of these major events, it’s more difficult to stay up on things like synagogue scholars-in-residence or talks at Book Culture or Rizzoli. Some of the sources we mine are well known: The Center for Jewish History, 92Y, and the Streicker Center at Temple Emanu-el. Others are Mechon Hadar, JTS, the Museum of Jewish Heritage, the Jewish Book Council, the NY Public Library, and universities that include Fordham, Baruch, and CUNY.
The only problem we’ve found is having to decide from among the abundance of riches. Consider October 17th, when the selection is between An Evening with the Zohar at 92Y, The Other Peace Process at JTS, and Jewish New York 1917 at The Center for Jewish History.
We’re truly blessed to have such choices, and we hope to encourage you to partake of some of them, either in person or online. With the holidays behind us, Jewish learning opportunities lie ahead.
To access Wandering Jews and to sign up for monthly mailings, visit: limmudny.org/learn-all-year/wandering-jews-nyc-events/
For questions or to submit events, email: [email protected]
Linda Rich provides executive coaching and leadership development to nonprofit clients, including JTS, CLAL, UJA-Federation of NY and the Alban Institute. A strong believer in adult Jewish education, she created Wandering Jews several years ago to share the rich opportunities with others. She can be reached at: [email protected]