Our rabbinical program stresses hands-on, reflective learning across all instructional areas. It cultivates knowledge, skills and character with passion for Jewish tradition, the Jewish people and social and environmental justice.
This year RRC has rolled out a new, reimagined curriculum in which every experience integrates the three aspects of rabbinical learning and development shown below. Choose an area to learn more.
• Small-group reflection encourages
personal growth: for example,
“How do I bring my fullest self into
my rabbinate? What is my Shabbat
practice, and how is it evolving?”
• Close, mentoring relationships and
great access to faculty support
• Warm, caring community embraces
students and their families
• Environment fosters individualized
spiritual and Jewish growth
• Community davens, meditates and
• Pursue individual passions on
a solid foundation of
knowledge and skills
• Experience deep immersion in
• Integrate traditional texts with
• Engage in independent study
• Enjoy opportunities to study at
other learning institutions
• Robust internship program offered
• Hands-on learning emphasized
• Field experiences fully integrated
into the curriculum, not separate
• Experiential learning encouraged,
such as prison chaplaincy and
(paired text study)
Meet some of our current students and learn how a range of field experiences help shape their development
University of Delaware Hillel
My internship this year was particularly helpful because there is no other rabbinic presence at this Hillel. I had great support from professors and mentors at RRC, but once I got onto campus, I was the rabbi this year! That was a huge step for my development. For the first time, I wasn't taking on projects that got filtered down to me through a supervisor. Rather, I had to test my skills in many areas, from halakhah to spiritual advice. This was
a great challenge and a rewarding experience.
Ruhi Sophia Motzkin Rubenstein, Congregational Intern, Congregation Beit Simchat Torah
At CBST, I learned to be a rabbi in the field. It's where all of the theory and the practice came together for me, as I juggled multiple adult and children's education responsibilities, program planning, service leading, public speaking and pastoral counseling. The most powerful moment for me came early in my internship, when I led a private kol nidrey service around a hospital bed, with the family of a CBST member who was on hospice. Less than 12 hours later, I stood on the stage at the Javitz Center in front of 4,000 people as kol nidrey was recited. The energy in each room was very powerful, and I love that I've gotten to do work that brings me into both kinds of holy space.
Clinical Pastoral Education
My first CPE internship was an intensive summer spent at the Hospitals of the University of Pennsylvania. I supported patients and families in the emergency department and intensive care units. Through moments of crisis and often grief, I learned the value of presence as a chaplain, and have been able to inhabit this role with increasing competence.
My second CPE experience has been in a rehabilitation unit, working with patients and families as they negotiate the difficulties of recovery from amputation, stroke and brain injury. This often involves long-term care and allows me to establish close working relationships. Both experiences have proven invaluable to my development, and they have solidified my decision to pursue hospital chaplaincy as my rabbinical career.
As the Torah School director at Kol Tzedek, I have seen how heymish, loving and joyful Jewish education can be. I have developed curricula that are rooted in a Reconstructionist relationship to Judaism plus a strong commitment to social justice. I observed how our students flower when given the chance to lead the discussion, build their own relationships and discover their own truths. Support from my rabbinic supervisors, both at work and at RRC, has helped me develop. I’m learning how to nourish children and help them grow into invested members of our community, as comfortable and confident Jews.
Monroe Village Senior Adult Community
I connect with the hearts and souls of Jewish elders in my pastoral care internships. Elders invite me into their lives, their stories, their passing joys, their fears, and even places where they have not invited the people closest to them. I may bring a healing Jewish presence, but the elders are always my teachers. By being together, we create a makom kadosh, a holy place, where the Divine holds us, protects us and gives us blessing.
Intern for the Tikkun Olam Commission of the Jewish Reconstructionist Communities
I have gotten a firsthand look at how individual congregations and the movement at large make decisions to support social change. I have learned from conversations with representatives of congregations across North America about their work to bring about social justice—both locally and globally. While connecting congregations with resources to generate change in their communities, I have encouraged them to think intentionally about how they can work to lessen the effects of income inequality and help our society become more economically just.
and Multifaith Organizing
Beyond Rabbinical Education
Each semester, RRC opens selected courses and/or workshops to non-matriculated students. In the future, we plan to expand these offerings and include new formats, such as retreat-based certificate programs.