Admissions, Retention, and Graduation Information

Rabbinical School (five-year program)

New Admissions 2002-2012: 67
5th-year Graduation Rate: 43%
Still enrolled after 5 years: 18%
Total Graduation Rate: 61%

Cantorial School (five-year program)

New Admissions 2002-2012: 32
5th-year Graduation Rate: 34%
Still enrolled after 5 years: 41%
Total Graduation Rate: 75%

Chaplaincy School (three-year program)

New Admissions 2003-2014: 33
3rd-year Graduation Rate: 42%
Still enrolled after 3 years: 24%
Total Graduation Rate: 66%

Transfer Students 2002-2012: 23

3rd-4th-year Graduation Rate: 70%
Still enrolled after 4 years: 17%
Total Graduation Rate: 87%

Gender

New Admissions 2002-2012 (all programs)
Male: 52
Female: 83

Prior Degrees Earned

New Admissions 2002-2012 (all programs)
Graduate: 59
Baccalaureate: 76

*Note: 40-60% of our students have been part-time, and therefore many of them take longer than 5 years (or, in the case of Chaplaincy, 3 years) to finish their professional programs.

Educational Effectiveness

AJRCA programs share basic overall objectives of education for Jewish leadership. We affirm the Jewish tradition that our lives, collectively and individually, rest on three pillars: Torah (the Teachings), avodah (prayer and ceremonial life) and gemilut hasadim (acts of lovingkindness). Jewish leaders serving a variety of communities must achieve expertise and leadership qualities in these areas, and we understand these as defining the institutional learning outcomes (ILOs) for our students, with appropriate variations as described in our Catalog, in the descriptions of each program.

In addition, we affirm that spiritual development is essential for the individual who chooses to serve God and the Jewish people as a Rabbi, Cantor, Chaplain, or Community Leader. Such a person takes on a major task as exemplar, teacher, and helper. This level of professional work requires constant attention to one’s own motivations, emotions, and behaviors. For that, a strong foundation of practice must be laid during the years of one’s professional education.

Demonstration of Achievement of Outcomes

The achievement of the above outcomes is demonstrated to the Faculty of the Academy by successful completion of the curriculum of each program, its co-curricular requirements, and periodic examinations and evaluations. Details of the curricula and requirements are provided in the appropriate sections in the Catalog.

Our diverse course offerings provide traditional and contemporary approaches to biblical and rabbinic studies, professional skills, song and chant, pastoral counseling, education, history, ethics, liturgy, life cycles, and mystical traditions. Minyan and classes enable them to learn not only to lead religious services, to appreciate the significance of music as the soul of Jewish liturgy, and to understand the importance of ritual structures in community-building. Most of all, our students learn to transmit Torah and tradition in a manner that reflects the highest Jewish values, in the context of the realities of contemporary Jewish life.

A unique aspect of the Academy is that students from the various programs have the opportunity to study with one another in core courses as well as electives. Prospective rabbis and cantors have the opportunity to work with each other in our minyan, recognizing the unique expertise held by each. Both also take numerous Jewish studies and professional skills courses with chaplaincy students and other degree candidates. In this way, all students develop an appreciation for the unique contributions of different types of Jewish professionals.

With the advantage of AJRCA’s unique transdenominational and spiritual education, our Rabbis, Cantors, Chaplains, and other community leaders who have graduated from the Academy have been hired by a wide variety of synagogues as well as communal organizations and institutions nationwide. Their choices of pulpits have included large and small synagogues in many denominations, and range from some of the oldest and most established congregations to newer, entrepreneurial communities. Many are also serving in community agencies, schools, and colleges.